Tuesday, October 6, 2009
The latest company to pull out is Apple, joining others such as Nike, P.G.E. and Excelon in their departure. The companies are also crying foul over their inability to help frame chamber positions, even when their representatives sit on the board.
The chamber has done everything in its power in recent years to fight sensible environmental policy, focusing on the perfect, as a way to avoid ever moving towards the adequate. They have opposed the current cap and trade legislation that has passed the House and is moving to the Senate. The bill would allow a selling of credits and create a pollution free market scenario.
Now, I can already guess who the winners will be in the pollution credit game. We all can. But putting my class envy aside for a second, I applaud that these companies are getting their heads out of the sand and moving towards a positive and tangible solution.
The Chamber CEO Thomas Donohue did some fancy bobbing and weaving when asked about Apple's move. "Apple didn't take the time to understand the Chamber's position on climate and forfeited the opportunity to advance a 21st century approach to climate change." And "While we do support legislation to address climate change, we oppose legislation such as the Waxman-Markey bill that numerous studies show will cause Americans to lose their jobs and shift greenhouse gas emissions overseas, negating potential climate benefits," Donohue wrote. He said that the business group was focused on innovation and technology to combat climate change. It is a shame that Apple will not be part of our efforts," he wrote.
Now when I hear 21st century plan, I think of two things immediately. We've got no idea what to do but we have a high falutin' fancy title and we still have 91 years left to implement something. Very futuristic sword brandishing before we shrug our shoulders and give up and walk away. But business always first.
Then Mr. Donohue launched into this pretty canard. He said that the business group is committed to the environment but also to preserving the competitiveness of American business. Now I learned a long time ago what "but" means when placed in such a fulcrum like position in a sentence - it means disregard all the words I just said.
Groups like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the Pacific Legal Foundation, etc. will never give the environment a fair shake. Have you noticed that the water, earth and air, not to mention our fellow animals, always come in second in their tabulations? Nature never wins. Meg Whitman says that the first thing she is going to do as governor is repeal the climate and global warming laws established by her predecessor.
I have never joined the chamber. I have been solicited to do so in the past. They need a little local help where I live. But I could never join an organization whose national positions are so diametrically opposed to my own. I don't like the candidates or their positions on the issues they espouse.