An Example of Pointless Greenieness

-By Warner Todd Huston

NBC has created an entire phalanx of videos centered on environmental issues to show its fealty to the religion of greenism. There are celebrities, trite slogans, and all sorts of absurd promises on what going green can do for us all. But are these "solutions" really any good? Let's look at one of NBC's claims to see if it makes much sense, shall we?

The subject happens to be one of green fascism's favorites: light bulbs. The ad, you see, claims that if every American household gets rid of incandescent light bulbs to be replaced with an energy savers, why… well, here is the voice over of the ad:

If every home changes one of these (image of an incandescent light bulb) for one of these (an energy saving light bulb), we'd save enough power to light up New York City for a year. Broadway, Wall Street, Central Park. Just one light bulb. You don't have to do a lot to do a lot.

But let's think about this.
According to the U.S. Census there are about fifteen million households in our nation of over 300 million people. So, it takes 115 millions people (at least) to carry out the bulb replacements. And getting every home to do this only gives us enough to power one city? Worse, every family in the nation will have to participate to help a city few of them live in.

What is the motivation, here? Why should a family in Boca Raton, Florida care if the folks in New York get free energy for a year (which is the implication of the ad)? And for triple the amount of the cost to purchase the *correct* bulb over the *wrong* one, most Americans will wonder why they have to spend more to help New York?

But let's take New York out of the quotient and just say all that effort nation-wide will save the energy of "a large city." We still have the same problem. We have to coordinate the efforts of an entire nation just to save the costs of one city, a cost which spread across the nation will see negligible returns to each household. How does that make any substantive sense? How will an entire nation of people be made to care about saving energy for just one city in a nation of 300 million especially when their own savings would be practically invisible to their pocketbooks?

The savings in question are a drop in the bucket, a tear in the ocean, of the energy costs in this country. We are urging an entire nation to efforts, to costs, to going out of their way for little return benefit and for no benefit at all for most. This ad shows how silly environuts really are. All that effort for such little benefit, all those families trying to "make a difference" and, in the end, all their efforts won't make much of a difference at all. It’s sound and fury signifying nothing.

That pretty much describes the entire green movement.

But there is a worse aspect to all this effort. It won’t really end up saving anything for people. Oh, it’s possible that some amount of energy won’t be used (i.e. saved from being used) but the energy companies -- with the help of their pals in government -- won’t be lowering anyone’s energy costs.

Why do I say that? Well, what ends up happening is that when the customers start using less power, the power companies get permission to raise prices because they are now “losing” their sales! Then, government adds on more and more regulations costing customers more money in fees, taxes, and the like.

In the end, no benefit is seen to anyone. Worse, all our freedom is curtailed and our own ability to chose whatever light bulbs we want to use is eliminated.

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