Drew noted below the hubbub over Obama’s plans to impose bankrupting carbon taxes on U.S. coal companies.
The lefty blogosphere is crying foul over this untimely reminder of Obama’s tax-and-spend instincts. We’re urged to consider the context of those remarks — The One was talking about older coal plants, we are assured. Then why did Obama say if someone builds a coal plant, they’ll be bankrupted by his carbon taxes?
Perhaps the context they mean is that we should recognize that Obama comments were trying to assure Greens that he’s the greenest candidate of all – but don’t worry, coal-producing states, he has no intention of actually following through on that campaign rhetoric. That would jibe perfectly with his record in coal-producing Illinois. This story from the Washington Post captures the issue very nicely:
More broadly, Obama’s contortions on coal point to the limits of the role he likes to assume, that of a unifier who can appeal across traditional lines and employ a “new kind of politics” to solve problems. In reaching out to the coal industry, some observers say, he may have been trying to show that he is a different sort of Democrat, but the gesture had the look of old-style politicking and put him in a corner, where he wound up alienating some on both sides of the issue.
“He was trying to throw a bone to the southern Illinois coal interests . . . and was surprised when people started saying, ‘What the heck are you doing?’ ” said Frank O’Donnell, president of the environmental group Clean Air Watch. “That’s a rookie mistake for a presidential candidate, to think you can get in the middle of a controversial issue and no one will notice.”
Barack Obama has bigger problems than his bankrupting energy-tax policy. He’ll say anything, as long as its exactly what you want to hear.