Monday, December 19, 2011

A Gift of Christmas Light

Buried in the thousand or so pages of the much-debated and much-delayed compromise spending bill was a small Christmas gift for most of us. The House passed the bill last Thursday, while the Senate voted favorably on Saturday. As the bill currently stands, the upcoming ban on good old-fashioned incandescent lights was overturned. The President is expected to sign the bill after bellyaching about it for awhile.

It seems that the light bulb will not be one of the points of contention when the next last-minute "government shutdown" spending bill comes up. It also seems that even a lot of Democrats hate that ghastly pall cast by the compact fluorescent bulbs, and few of them want to call a hazmat team if somebody drops one of the ugly little buggers.

Some of the newer conservative House members objected that the bill only funds the government through the end of the fiscal year, thereby once again kicking the budget can down the road. But at least that's one unnecessary crisis averted until September 30 of 2012. The Republicans gave up many of their proposed restrictions on government regulation and policy, but wouldn't budge on the light bulbs.

Not only is the ban on incandescents little more than ill thought-out green weenie nonsense, but its deeper meaning is another bureaucratic nanny-state interference with the market and the personal choices of millions upon millions of Americans. Although the issue wasn't as big and obvious as cap 'n tax and other leftist bureaucratic schemes, the issue of what kind of light bulb the American consumer should buy became a freedom of choice issue that doesn't involve taking an innocent human life.

Pro-incandescent bulb advocate Rep. Michael Burgess (R-Texas) led the original charge to end the ban with specific legislation. But his bill was defeated when it went to the Senate through parliamentary stalling by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid D-La La Land). Burgess has vowed that he will hold his troops together to retain the provision in any future Congressional action.

In order to be added as a rider to the bill firming up the spending budget, the bulb provision does not actually amend the 2007 law banning incandescents which was scheduled to occur in increments starting with 100 watt bulbs and eventually extending to all incandescents. What it does is effectively the same thing, only with an additional slap at the eco-wackos. The new provision prohibits the administration from spending a single dime on enforcing or in any manner carrying out the idiotic standards. Your house can now remain free of lightbulb mercury poisoning a little longer.

It's a shame the Republicans had to use trickery to get a common sense bill past the ecofreaks in the Senate. And in this case, it happened largely because the administration was getting heat about the Democratic Senate failing to act on the year-end spending bill which had not so long ago seemed to be hopelessly deadlocked. The Republicans had also attempted to add riders to cut back the administration's nuclear waste policy, "family planning" policy and environmental policy, but for multiple reasons (most of them good and logical) decided to defer those actions for a later time.

16 comments:

AndrewPrice said...

I hate the florescent bulb. And it truly bothers me that our government has nothing better to do with it's time that take this level of control over my life.

Tennessee Jed said...

It truly is a symbol of statism at it's worst. Great picture btw.

LawHawkRFD said...

Andrew: They're hideous. They look stupid, they have a terrible color temperature, they're expensive, and they don't fit in many lamps (including some of my antiques). I had to take the globes off the porch lamps to put them in. So I took them back out and put the old bulbs back in. And it's all in the name of some airy-fairy future green world when it's really all about more government control and fewer American jobs.

LawHawkRFD said...

Tennessee: Yep. It's the nanny-state in full bloom. It's also another reason to vote for the most conservative candidate in the primaries and a Republican in the general election. This green weenie light bulb stuff all started on George W. Bush's watch (2007), during that lengthy period of time when he had lost his veto pen. God, I sound like a liberal saying it's Bush's fault.

I've had that picture on my desktop for months just waiting to use it.

ArmChairGeneral said...

OK. I am Irish. I am as green as you can get.

tryanmax said...

I don't have a problem with CFLs per se. I actually like them for the garage and outdoors. But the gov't overreach is ridiculous.

I can't help but think of an old rallying cry of the gay-rights movement, keep the government out of the bedroom. But with the government in every light socket, they are in every room of the house. If no one is supposed to care about what goes on in my bedroom, then no one should care about what lights I leave on when I do whatever it is.

(As a single dad, I'll clue you in though: not much.)

LawHawkRFD said...

tryanmax: I'm quite sure that CFLs do have their legitimate though limited applications. But that's sort of the point, isn't it? Choice. I'll use CFLs in my garage, and incandescents in my Tiffany lamp. Butt out, federal government, and let the market give us choices. Old-fashioned fluorescent tubes are more efficient than incandescents as well. So I'll use them in the factory but I'm not going to replace my dining-room chandelier with them.

LawHawkRFD said...

ACG: Indeed, you are entirely emerald. And we all know what the Irish use as fuel. LOL

T-Rav said...

300 polar bears died due to the breakaway of ice that eventually sank the Titanic. It's a fact. Don't ask me where I got it; just trust me. You like polar bears, don't you?

Individualist said...

T-Rav

I do trust you just as I know that the reason the Polar Bears drowned is because the cannot swim. IT is a fact brought to you by the people that proved the Towers were an inside job because steel can't melt... ever....

LawHawkRFD said...

T-Rav: The bears hung around after the crash and waited until they could dine on Titanisickles. That's what really did them in. I like polar bears, I just don't like greedy polar bears. If they had swum back to the icepack instead of going for snacks, they'd have been OK.

LawHawkRFD said...

Indi: As Rosie would say, "I guess you Googled it." I also found out from the same source that the reason the polar bears are drowning is that they don't know ice melts.

Individualist said...

Lawhawk

Polar Bears should try floating on the water on Steel Sheets then cause we know that Steel can't melt.

LawHawkRFD said...

Indi: Your logic is impeccable.

rlaWTX said...

your picture wouldn't work wit the twisty bulbs - you'd hurt that tree graphic!!!
Tree graphic huggers unite against the twisty bulb graphics!

rlaWTX said...

*with

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