Conservative Conservatism

The part of Frum’s book I wanted to read was his plan to run as a “green” republican.  In this chapter, he notes that Republicans have always had a good record for the environment, from Teddy Roosevelt to the Endangered Species Act to the Clean Air Act.  He also notes that the Democrats have done little by way of environmental legislation, but come across as the environmental party.

In an interview, he talked about the need to push local environmental issues such as clean water.  However, for the bulk of his chapter he talked about using taxes to even out the playing field.  He wants to tax oil and natural gas to allow cleaner fuels to compete on a more equal footing.

It’s an interesting concept, but I wonder how people would feel paying more at the pump until they converted their car to an ethanol based car.  He did say the tax oil companies pay can be used to add more to the child tax credit, maybe $1000 to $1500.

I’m not sure if his plans are best, but I do think the Republicans should use their historical record to ensure that local environment is protect, especially in suburban and rural areas that face sprawl.  Too many times, people with large tracts of land have two options: 1) sell their land for business uses; 2) or keep their farm surrounded by neighborhoods and WalMarts.  There needs to be more environmental plans available to let these landowners have more options (hopefully more environmental options) than just selling it to a new builder.

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