The intellectual bankruptcy of conservatism: Heritage even opposes energy efficiency

gigo.gifConservative think tanks remain oblivious and impervious to the facts. They cling to global warming denial and delay even in the face of the remarkable advances both in scientific understanding about global warming and in clean technology solutions. They provide the foundational misanalysis (disanalysis?) for the entire conservative movement — although “movement” must be the wrong word for immovable ideologues who oppose any motion whatsoever on the central problems facing the nation and the planet.

We have seen that the Cato Institute remains intellectually bankrupt on both the urgency of the climate problem and the availability of cost-effective solutions. The Competitive Enterprise Institute actually runs ad campaigns aimed at destroying the climate for centuries. Kenneth Green, resident scholar of the American Enterprise Institute, gave a recent speech betraying a willful ignorance of climate science and energy technology.

Now the grand-daddy of them all, the Heritage Foundation, reveals it is not aging gracefully. It launched an absurd website and an even more ridiculous video in a bizarre effort to fight the Supreme-Court mandated effort to reduce global warming pollution.

Not content to merely oppose vital greenhouse gas regulation, Heritage recently published a rant and an analytical screed against even the idea of investing in clean technology as a dual strategy to help get us out of this economic mess while jumpstarting the national effort to avoid catastrophic global warming. First, Heritage blogger Nick Loris responded to the UN’s Green Economy Initiative and the Center for American Progress’s Green Recovery program with this absurd rant comparing those strategies to what the Nazis and Soviets did:

The United Nations is proposing an environmental ‘New Deal’ that would “be similar to Franklin D Roosevelt’s New Deal which helped the US recover from the Great Depression of the 1930s.”

First, the reality is that FDR’s New Deal did not help the U.S. recover from the Great Depression but simply made things worse. Second, the only thing a green ‘New Deal’ will do is lead us down a Green Road to Serfdom. (Nobel Laureate Friedrich Hayek’s The Road to Serfdom is a telling portrayal of what collectivism in the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany can lead to: impoverishment and oppression of freedom.)

The Wonk Room debunked this hysterical and ahistorical nonsense, then went on to note:

Loris’s charge of Nazi-Soviet “collectivism” is utterly bizarre. The U.N.’s Green Economic Initative is a mainstream capitalist effort, with research overseen by Pavan Sukdhev, a top investment banker and self-described “total capitalist.” Its press release celebrates venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins, public-private partnerships, and growth of international markets. CAP’s Green Recovery program primarily uses tax credits and federal loans to spur private investment, as well as investment in a 21st-century public infrastructure.

Finally, David Kreutzer, Senior Policy Analyst in Energy Economics and Climate Change, published a truly bizarre disanalysis that conflates greenhouse gas regulations with a green recovery or green economic stimulus, “Impact of CO2 Restrictions on Employment and Income: Green Jobs or Gone Jobs?” Let me review it in detail. He begins:

The clear political failure of the Lieberman-Warner bill last spring shows that support for global-warming legislation wanes considerably when the extraordinary costs are compared to the almost insignificant benefits.

The failure of L-W shows 1) it is very hard to get serious bargaining on a climate bill that everybody knows is going nowhere in Congress and would in any case be vetoed by the President, and 2) conservatives won’t ever support a serious global warming bill until Miami is underwater, if then.

In response, those pushing restrictions on carbon dioxide (CO2) have tried to repackage global-warming legislation as jobs bills.

This is where reality hangs a left turn and Heritage veers sharp right. I don’t know anybody “repackaging” global warming legislation as jobs bills. I do know people, including the Center for American Progress, pushing a green recovery or stimulus bill prior to enactment of global warming legislation.

As appealing as the repackaging seems on the surface (lots of high-paid, high-tech workers in lab coats), the support for these claims collapses once it is examined. A little thought experiment helps give perspective.

Again, there’s been no repackaging. The advocates for L-W always understood that pushing clean energy would create a high tech jobs, but the green recovery bills currently being discussed are completely different than carbon restrictions. Heck, even Heritage blogger Loris understands that distinction.

Suppose Jones used 1,000 kilowatt-hours (kW-h) when the price of electricity was $0.10 per kW-h. He spent $100 on electricity (1,000 kW-h x $0.10 = $100). Now suppose the price rises to $0.15 per kW-h. Responding to the higher price, Jones cuts his electricity consumption to 700 kW-h. How much better off is Jones with the higher price? Most would say, since he is now spending $105 for less electricity (700 kW-h x $0.15 = $105), he is worse off.

Truly bizarre. First off, the green jobs bills don’t even raise carbon prices — so they don’t lead to higher electricity prices, only lower electricity bills. Second, even if we were talking about a combination of CO2 restrictions and a green jobs bill, it is only conservative think tanks, who oppose aggressive efforts to push energy efficiency, that posit Jones acts only because he is “responding to the higher price.” In fact, wherever the government embraces smart utility regulations and incentives that finally put efficiency on a level playing field with increased supply, people invariably embracing energy-saving strategies (see “Energy efficiency, Part 4: How does California do it so consistently and cost-effectively?“).

However, those promoting restrictions on CO2 turn economics, logic, and math upside down. In their world, the answer is: Jones consumes 300 kW-h less and, at $0.15 per kW-h, he saves $45 (300 kW-h x $0.15 = $45). Then he spends this “extra” money and creates jobs.

Uhh, no. Those promoting restrictions on CO2 coupled with smart energy policies believe that Jones and his utility make use of a variety of high-tech and low-tech energy-saving strategies with a demonstrated net cost of $0.02 to $0.03 per kW-h. Thus some of Jones’ money goes to employ people who make energy-efficient appliances, some of it goes to people who insulate homes, and some of it goes into Jones’ pocket, which he spends. All those things create jobs.

Everybody else correctly thinks that since Jones now spends $105 for 30 percent less electricity, he is $5 poorer and has to get by with less energy. He has less to spend, not more. Thus there will be less employment, not more. This is especially true since one of the ways Jones cuts energy consumption is to use more expensive energy-conserving products, making his loss greater than $5.

Yes, I know that in neoclassical economics beloved of people like Kreutzer, it is not possible that Jones or anyone else could be wasting electricity, so any reduction in electricity is inherently an economic “cost.” On the other hand, the beliefs of people like Kreutzer have destroyed the US financial and credit system so much that even uber-neoclassicist Alan Greenspan was forced to admit that his anti-regulatory theory of the economy was wrong. We just can’t afford to wait until the climate is destroyed irreversibly for Heritage, Cato, CEI, and AEI scholars to admit that maybe their anti-regulatory theories are wrong too.

Now Kreutzer begins his wacky attack on energy-saving products that rapidly pay for themselves. I guess it is safe to say that he lives in a home without efficient lightbulbs, without insulation, without Energy Star products, and that he pretty much leaves the lights on, the doors and windows open, and the hot water running 24/7 since any effort whatsoever to save energy would obviously be an economic loss.

The topsy-turvy, we-save-with-higher-prices way of thinking undergirds a recent well-publicized University of California study that claims restricting access to energy creates more income and more employment. The study notes that per capita electricity use in California is 40 percent less than the national average and attributes this reduction to efficiencies brought on by state policies.

No, that isn’t what the study claims. The state never restricted access to energy. No credible, independent analyst would ever make such a claim. The study shows that a systematic multi-decade effort to promote “innovative energy efficiency policies created 1.5 million additional fulltime jobs with a total payroll of over $45 billion” (see “Green policies in California created 1.5 million jobs“).

But Californians pay 36 percent more for their electricity, have watched manufacturing’s share of state output drop by 15 percent since 1980, need less electricity for heating and cooling than the rest of the nation, live in smaller houses than the national average, and pay billions of dollars to generate electricity using inefficient alternatives.

Kreutzer jumps the shark here. First off, the entire country has seen manufacturing’s share of output drop since 1980. California not only isn’t special in this regard, but the state has famously launched both the information technology and Internet revolutions, which are equally famous for requiring electricity-intensive manufacturing, massive amounts of computers, and large data centers — all of which overpopulate the state. Second, yes, Californians do pay more for their electricity — not because they use inefficient alternatives but because they demand a cleaner grid. The state’s electricity has half the carbon dioxide emissions per kilowatt hour of the U.S. grid and much lower emissions of the criteria air pollutants. Unlike Heritage economists, Californians recognize the value of improved health and reduced pollution.

I would note that the primary citation Kreutzer offers for most of the false or misleading claims in this paragraph is a study by the Competitive Enterprise Institute, an organization even more extreme than Heritage in its ideologically blinkered pursuit of the planet’s destruction. No serious independent energy or environmental analyst would ever cite a CEI analysis, except to mock it. This citation, by itself, pretty much invalidates Kreutzer’s entire analysis.

The 40 percent cut in per capita energy use is not free “efficiency,” but it is treated as such. And it is projected to get 1 percent more “efficient” every year without cost. The job creation in this study is as fallacious as the reasoning on which it is based. But the silliness does not end there.

No and No. Because California has a three-decade history of successfully advancing energy efficiency, the California Energy Commission has perhaps the best data in the country on the effectiveness of efficiency programs. The programs aren’t “free” or “without cost,” but they are five times cheaper than new generation (see “Efficiency, Part 3: The only cheap power left“). Indeed, efficiency costs far less than electricity prices in every state in the country.

Another much-publicized study, done for the Center for American Progress, makes an even more fundamental error. The authors of this study fall prey to the classic “broken windows” fallacy whereby spending money creates jobs as the expenditure multiplies throughout the economy. The fallacy comes from ignoring the equally large destruction of jobs (actually larger because of something called “deadweight loss”) from taxing the $100 billion, which eliminates a similar cascade of job creation elsewhere.

Not even close. First off, why don’t we ever see an analysis from Heritage on the devastating job impacts of, say, Bush spending $10 billion a month on the Iraq war. Oh wait. I know. Because Bush isn’t paying for any of that spending. So until we see such budgetary analysis from Heritage, I think we can safely ignore their disingenuous and hypocritical criticisms of much more modest spending to get us out of the massive economic hole that the Bush administration and its Heritage-inspired policies have put us in.

Also, the CAP authors don’t ignore the deficit implications of a $100 billion stimulus, they merely point out that “as the economy remains in a slump, the primary problem is not the size of the federal deficit but how money is being spent.” And they convincingly argue that spending on a green recovery program creates more jobs than spending on household consumption — and four times as many jobs as spending on the oil industry. I would add that one of the primary purposes of the green recovery is to jumpstart the effort to end our addiction to foreign oil. Clearly, spending money on American-made technologies that reduce the multi-hundred billion dollar outflow of money from Americans to oil producing nations is a job-creating economic win-win.

I’m afraid it’s Kreutzer who has fallen prey to the classic “leaky windows” fallacy whereby spending money on energy-saving windows can’t in fact save anybody money because wasting energy must be economically optimal since conservative economic theory says it is.

A third, less-well-publicized study from the University of Tennessee is also based on the broken-windows fallacy. Here the authors calculate the jobs created by forcing renewable energy to 25 percent of total energy nationwide. But they neglect to account for the cost (and lost jobs) of the taxes needed so the government could subsidize all that inefficient energy.

Here Kreutzer 1) assumes that it must cost more to use renewables instead of examining the myriad government subsidies and regulations that have entrenched fossil fuels in our energy system, 2) ignores the health and environmental benefits of clean energy, 3) ignores the importance of reestablishing US dominance in the primary job creating industries of this century [see below], and 4) embraces an endless addiction to foreign oil and multi-trillion dollar trade deficits every decade until the wells run dry.

For Kreutzer and Heritage, the only “efficient” energy is mass consumption of dirty, depletable resources that are consumed by wasteful end-use devices, since, after all, the more energy you waste, the more you must spend, boosting GDP. Heck, in Kreutzer’s economic accounting method, pollution is a win-win for economic growth since it leads to more demands on our health care system — and ultimately to enormous spending on levees, water purification, relocating people from spreading deserts and rising seas, and on and on. Yes, the ever more desperate efforts of future generations to adapt to catastrophic global warming will be a big boon for infrastructure spending and the GDP.

In a recent study of the economic impacts of restricting CO2 emissions, researchers at the Center for Data Analysis at The Heritage Foundation did not find an increase in employment; to the contrary, such restrictions resulted in rather significant job losses. In some years, employment losses from the Lieberman-Warner restrictions would be 900,000 jobs. These job losses are net of any “green” jobs that are created.

Back to the inexplicable conflation of green recovery efforts with climate legislation. Gosh, who ever would have guessed that a Heritage Foundation analysis of climate legislation would only show job losses. If your economic models assume the economy is operating at optimal efficiency and they never account for the cost of pollution or for the learning curves from deployment of clean energy technologies, then all action on climate is doomed to harm the economy. If all you’ve got is a hammer, everything looks like your thumb.

Energy is a valuable input to the modern economy. Cutting CO2 makes less energy available, and when the impacts are traced through the economy, some jobs are created but more are lost. Counting only the jobs that are created distorts the analysis and invalidates the conclusions.

When all is said and done, restricting CO2 cuts energy, income, and jobs. Pretending that breaking windows creates employment may make choosing among alternatives easier, but it leads to bad policy.

Cutting carbon dioxide makes polluting energy less available. And when the net impacts to the economy are calculated, the benefits outweigh the cost according to objective, independent analyses by McKinsey & Co., the National Academy of Science, the International Energy Agency — and even the review of the economic literature by IPCC scientists that was signed off by every member government, including the Bush administration (see links below).

Pretending that leaky windows don’t exist — or worse, using economic models that say leaky windows boost economic growth by forcing overconsumption of polluting energy — may make Heritage feel better in arguing for inaction, but it leads to catastrophic policy (see “Wrong Again: Delayers cry wolf with same old Garbage In, Garbage Out economic model“).

Finally, although Heritage and its conservative allies continue to deny the reality of global warming, all the rational business and political leaders in the world understand we need to replace our polluting energy infrastructure with clean, efficient infrastructure over the next few decades. So the choice isn’t between action on climate and clean energy versus inaction, as Heritage posits. The choice is between action now and action later. Action now is not only cheaper, but it creates the real possibility that we will be a leader and exporter (not a follower and importer) in what is sure to be the largest job creating industry of the century — clean energy.

Related Posts on the sound economics behind climate action:

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15 Responses to The intellectual bankruptcy of conservatism: Heritage even opposes energy efficiency

  1. paulm says:

    They are a coming round….slowly.

    Ronald Bailey the science correspondent for Reason magazine, who has written some interesting content…

    Now says “Anyone still holding onto the idea that there is no global warming ought to hang it up. ”

  2. Tony Noerpel says:


    Is it ok to advertize our energy summit? Attendance is free and we have donated goodies from Harris Teeter and Wegmans plus a lot of non-profit and local company exhibitors mostly wind, solar and geothermal installers and manufacturers.

    Bruce Beddow has done geo thermal school design in the DC area and Stewart Schwartz and Suart Freudberg both served on Governor Kaine’s Commissiion on Climate Change.

    Mke Tidwell will be there with some enthusiastic opening remarks.

    Best regards

    Tony Noerpel
    Founder Sustainable Loudoun (LCCSS)

    Third Annual
    Sustainable Loudoun Energy Summit
    Nov.14, Friday, 6:00 PM
    George Washington University Virginia Campus, Ashburn
    Focus: government action to address environmental and energy issues
    Dr. David Vaccari
    Associate Professor and Director, Stevens Institute of Technology
    Andrea McGimsey
    Supervisor, Loudoun County, Virginia
    Bruce Beddow
    Principal, B2E Engineering, P.C.
    Stuart Freudberg
    Metropolitan Washington Council of Government
    Stewart Schwartz
    Coalition for Smarter Growth

    What can governments do to respond to local and global energy and resource challenges? Tonight’s guests will respond with their insights on the initatives that local, regional, state and federal governments are and will be taking to put Loudoun on a more secure and sustainable path for future generations.

    At 6:00pm, come and learn about local companies and organizations promoting innovative solutions to Loudoun’s energy and resource challenges. Refreshments provided by our local grocery stores. Join us at 7:00pm for engaging presentations from each of the guest speakers, followed by a moderated Q&A session.
    Event Sponsors:
    George Washington University Virginia Campus
    Sustainable Loudoun/LCCSS
    * Directions: The GWU-VA campus is at 20101 Academic Way, Ashburn, VA.
    located off of Route 7, one mile west of Route 28, five miles north of Dulles International Airport, 12 miles west of Tysons Corner, and eight miles east of historic Leesburg.
    See for map.
    Free and open to the public.
    For more information, please contact Tony Noerpel, (540) 882-3289, or Mike Maher (703) 777-5255, ext. 2267
    Sustainable Loudoun promotes the development of a local community economy based on environmental stewardship and the sustainable use of resources.

  3. Brian M says:

    …They provide the foundational misanalysis (disanalysis?) for the entire conservative movement — although “movement” must be the wrong word for immovable ideologues who oppose any motion whatsoever on the central problems facing the nation and the planet….

    I think the term you are looking for is “stagnant”, as in “conservative stagnant”. :-)

    [JR: Yes, that sounds good. From now on I’ll try to refer to them as the conservative movement stagnant.]

  4. Tilo says:

    From Martin Durkin: “Romanticism is in essence anti-Capitalist. Not in the sense of traditional Marxism. The Marxists wanted to go forwards not backwards. They wanted to build bigger factories than the capitalists, not folksy medieval craft workshops. No. Romanticism was a kind of reactionary anti-capitalism. And it was the ideology and aesthetic worldview of those people who lost most, or gained least from capitalism. I think it’s the same today. In Europe, the toffs (Prince Charles and his gang) are green because they have lost their position in society. The intellectuals – teachers, lecturers, scientists are green because they don’t have the status they used to. (Not long ago, a professor would have been someone important, had a big house, maids etc). These days, plumbers make more money.

    It’s not easy to explain this properly in a few lines, but this I think is the real basis for all those anti-modern green prejudices.

    They hated all the factories and cars long before global warming came along. The importance of global warming is it linked what otherwise would a have been a disparate bunch of prejudices and gave them some moral impetus.

    So you can say that scientists profit from global warming (grants etc), but that’s the icing on the cake.

    You can easily tell that global warming is really a political idea rather than a scientific one. In any gathering in polite society you can tell who will be ‘pro-global warming’ and who will be sceptical, in the same way as you can guess who will hate George Bush, or who will be sympathetic to Sarah Palin.

    Go into a party of lefties in New York and tell them the science on global warming doesn’t stack up. They don’t say, ‘Good Lord, what a relief, I thought we were in for it.’ Instead they get very cross with you. They’re terribly attached to their apocalypse and don’t take kindly to people rocking the boat. ”

    Of course limiting themselves to the support of capitalism in the very limited area of what they consider to be green energy is not at all support of capitalism. It’s simply a case of taking a little of it under their wing on the pretense of being open minded and not being total nut cases. They also know that nobody wound buy their “do without energy” stance. If environmentalists were truely concerned about CO2 they would embrace nuclear since they would meet no resistance to this from the right. The fact that they continue to find idiotic rationalizations against nuclear is prove that their agenda is political.

  5. Jim Bullis says:

    Doctrinaire capitalists need to be reminded that much of the economic activity of the last 100 years has been artificially stimulated by government action, which has been in response to pressures from the auto industry and the oil industry. The public has been happy to go along for the ride. I mean literally.

    The obvious example is the oil depletion allowance of 1924 which set off a wave of “whoopee opportunism” which we liked to pretend was capitalism.

    Other examples, going back a bit longer, include the rather popular government policies that made free land available. We cloaked that in semi-religious nonsense under the heading of “manifest destiny” which helped us pretend we were not murderous jerks. I always recommend the Bret Harte story, “Princess Bob and her Friends” when this topic comes up. After reading that it is hard to imagine how anyone could seriously hold to American self righteousness.

    Based on realism, we can move ahead with practical objectives based on the idea that we are all in this together, and the economic system has to be workable for everyone.

  6. David B. Benson says:

    Jim Bullis — Well said! :-)

  7. Tilo says:

    “Doctrinaire capitalists need to be reminded that much of the economic activity of the last 100 years has been artificially stimulated by government action, which has been in response to pressures from the auto industry and the oil industry. The public has been happy to go along for the ride. I mean literally.”

    We’ll pretend that you are correct. The question is – so what’s the problem?

    “We cloaked that in semi-religious nonsense under the heading of “manifest destiny” which helped us pretend we were not murderous jerks.”

    Yeah, terrible of us to get in the way of the indiginous tribes murdering each other.

    So I’m wondering what country on the face of the earth was not established by someone murdering someone. Oops – I shouldn’t ask those questions. Getting people to wallow in guilt is one of the sources of your power, after all.

    “After reading that it is hard to imagine how anyone could seriously hold to American self righteousness.”

    Yes, you are much more advanced now, having moved on to green self righteousness.

  8. Tilo says:

    “Now says “Anyone still holding onto the idea that there is no global warming ought to hang it up. ””

    Nice straw man, but there has been global cooling and global warming for the entire history of the earth. So what? No one disagrees that we have been warming, at least until 11 years ago. The source of disagreement is how much is due to mankind and how much is natural.

    But tell me something. So far I have seen about 100 posts on this site that really say nothing more than that anyone who opposes the idea of AGW is an idiot. Is that all that you really need – continous mutual self assurance that you are the brilliant ones and the other guys are morons. I’m sure that it feels good. But doesn’t it get incredibly boring after a while.

  9. paulm says:

    Tilo, no it doesn’t.

    Especially because we have to find a way forward to cope with the catastrophe that lies ahead.

  10. paulm says:

    Tilo and by the way if you read his article you would have seen this bit…

    “People who have doubted predictions of catastrophic global warming (and that includes me) have long cited the satellite data series derived by climatologists John Christy a…”

    so there is still debate out there about whats happening with the temp – which is sad.

    As we move forward more and more skeptics will see the issue but it will probably be too late.

  11. Jim Bullis says:


    I am going to pretend you are joking.

    What you say sounds like a script for Eric Cartman on South Park.

    South Park already pointed out hypocricy of green self righteousness, but that should not discourage good faith attempts at green rightness.

  12. Frank Sabatino says:

    I have three engineering degrees. Global warming is a lie to control and tax energy, thus to control and enslave every human on earth.

    This is a web site for people begging to be enslaved, these are not liberal or progressive ideas, these are ideas of childlike fools that want a mommy and daddy govenment to take care of them from cradle to death.

    Of course, you will filter this e-mail, because like all collectives, there is an agenda, and if one is not part of the collective – they are an outsider, or worse the enemy.

    Frank Sabatino

    [JR: If you keep spreading disinformation, I will put you on moderation. Assuming that you actually have three engineering degrees, it just goes to show you that it isn’t that hard to get engineering degrees in this country. In any case, engineering ain’t science, and there are reasons that scientists do science stuff and engineers do engineers stuff.]

  13. Frank Sabatino says:

    I started off believing in Global Warming, seems like it is obvious humans are destroying the earth, and CO2 was just another example of the harm we are doing.

    A group of scientist and engineering buddies of mine would agrue for hours, so we decided to do some research, and we did. What we found was several fold:

    1. The concept of Global warming was started in the UK to support nuclear power.

    2. The oceans act as a huge sink and source for CO2, and equalibrium due to temperature changes takes centuries, if not thousands of years, the time scale for the evidence supporting GW is skewed. There is a huge lag time. The data is thus inconclusive.

    3. The earth goes thru natural cycles.

    4. One large volcanic eruption equals many, many years of human pollution.

    5. 125 years ago the amount of CO2 was about 3 parts/10,000, today it is about 4 parts/10,000. Imaging 10,000 golf balls, and compare that to 3 and 4 golf balls. Common sense would dictate going from 3 to 4 in 10,000 is not going to have a large effect.

    6. CO2 concentration is approx. .04% in air.

    7. Water vapour accounts for most of the “green house” effects.

    8. Always question those that want what you have, it is probably a scam.

    Frank Sabatino

    [JR: Hmm, Frank, given that you have most things backwards, I’m guessing you and your friends are reverse engineers! Sometimes I kill me … and sometimes willful anti-scientific ignorance will kill millions. You have just rehashed most of the standard denier talking points that have been long debunked in the scientific literature. You want what I have — a sustainable climate, so I guess you are a scam, too. “Common sense” is notoriously unreliable as a guide for medical or scientific reasoning. Stick to golf, and let real scientists and engineers do the real science and engineering.

    Oh, and if you really believe the crap you’re peddling, and if you’re really part of an easily duped group of scientists and engineers, spend some time here. You’ll at least stop pushing stuff that wouldn’t get past an undergraduate physics major.]

  14. Dug says:

    @Frank Sabatino says: “I have three engineering degrees. Global warming is a lie to control and tax energy, thus to control and enslave every human on earth.”
    That’s funny because I thought that if I was able to buy solar panels or some other tool that set me free of the energy grid I would in fact SET MYSELF FREE, even more so than I am now as an proud American.
    Whatever @Frank, you go ahead and believe that you are being enslaved. The rest of us will revel in our new-found freedom from the energy grid and the monopoly to whom we send our energy bills.