Bodman: I never talked to W about cap & trade!

bodman.jpgI was watching the grilling by Jay Inslee (D-WA) of Energy Secretary Bodman this morning at the House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing on the “Department of Energy’s Fiscal Year 2009 Budget Proposal.”

And Inslee got Bodman to say, “I haven’t talked to the president about cap-and-trade.” [I’m guessing their conversations are more like — Bodman: “How ’bout them Giants?” Bush: “Turd-Blossom? What are you doing here?”]

Inslee was amazed, but it is hard to be surprised by anything this administration does or doesn’t do — Samuel Nevergen’ Bodman included.

Strangely, Bodman’s defense of our do-nothing policy vis-a-vis the Chinese is that he spent many years trying to negotiate with them on currency and he concluded:

There is no leverage with the Chinese. The only leverage is what we are willing to do.

I wrote it down, and believe that is the verbatim quote. But it would seem to me that’s an argument for us actually doing something! And in any case the Chinese clearly see little benefit to themselves from raising the value of their currency vs. the dollar — whereas I hope they see some benefit to themselves from avoiding catastrophic global warming. If not, the planet is toast.

That said, if you were China and saw the U.S. doing nothing to reduce emissions, and in fact had been lobbied behind the scenes heavily for seven years by senior U.S. officials who were telling you 1) climate change isn’t serious, 2) the U.S. wasn’t going to do anything while Bush was President, and, 3) by the way, we’d really like your help in subverting the entire international negotiating process — well, gosh, big surprise that “there is no leverage with the Chinese.”

When will this long national nightmare end???

3 Responses to Bodman: I never talked to W about cap & trade!

  1. RB says:

    I know the Bush administration doesn’t believe in leadership by example. If we take the lead on climate change we can certainly the Chinese are more likely to follow. The quote “There is no leverage with the Chinese. The only leverage is what we are willing to do.” you list is so telling. Leadership by Example is certainly lacking in the Bush administration. Of course blaming the Chinese is just another Bush Administration stall tactic.

  2. Ronald says:

    I’m not surprised that Sec. Bodman and Pres. Bush never talked about cap and trade. It was never in the consideration of this administration to do anything about global warming.

    Somewhat the same thing happened with the decision to invade Iraq that this administration made. From what I have read, there was never a time in the administration when they asked whether they should do it, it was a forgone conclusion that it was going to happen.

    Politics for some is not about reality of what happens, but the reality of popularity, public opinion and elections. Richard Feynman, a Physicist who was on the first space shuttle failure inquest board, said that we can’t fool nature, what will happen will happen irregardless of our public relations. Not such a earth shattering comment, but in politics to a large degree, it doesn’t matter what the reality is, it only matters what the public relations are. As long as such large numbers of people don’t think that global warming is a problem, we’ll have this problem for a long time.

  3. Jay Alt says:

    When will this long national nightmare end???

    It ain’t over ’til it’s over –