Skip to content

What is the Green New Deal: Specifics not Tactical Framing.

March 13, 2019

IMG_20150326_104826_655

I bet most people out there do not know the specifics of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s (D-N.Y. hereinafter AOC), “Green New Deal.” The reason they do not know is that they get most (if not all) their information about is from the Media. The Media, however, whether left-leaning or right generally dispenses its information about political proposals not by exposing the public to the specifics of the plans itself but by limiting its discussion to the feasibility of the acceptance of the proposals by the political decision makers. The Media insiders call this “Tactical Framing.” The reason for this, I guess, is because the conflict over a political issue they believe is more “newsworthy” that the actual proposals themselves.

In an effort to remedy that particular general media bias, I include a link to AOC’s website containing the proposed resolution itself. AOC Green New Deal.

For those to whom reading and parsing out the intricacies of legislation is an understandable mystery, the following is a brief description of its contents.*

First and foremost it does not adopt the so-called “Green New Deal” into law. It merely creates a Congressional  Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming in the House that would be charged to hold hearings, study and produce a draft plan to implement the Green New Deal by January 1, 2020, and finalized legislation to be submitted no later than March 1, 2020. This is a common and often used tactic of all legislative bodies to study and develop legislation on complex subjects.

The proposal also lays out the specific issues and goals of the plan and legislation. They would include:

  1. developing a plan for the United States to shift to all renewable energy within a decade.
  2.  creating a national, energy-efficient “smart” grid.
  3.  “upgrading every residential and industrial building for state-of-the-art energy efficiency, comfort, and safety.”
  4.  reduceing emissions from manufacturing, agricultural and other industries, as well as decarbonizing, repairing and improving transportation and other infrastructure
  5.  “funding massive investment” in the drawdown and capture of greenhouse gases but does not set out how to accomplish that. I assume it would be something the Select Committee would study and propose in legislation.
  6.  laying out a national jobs program including a “training and education to be a full and equal participant in the transition, including through a national “job guarantee program” to “assure every person who wants one, a living wage job.”

 

As far as I can tell none of this is particularly new or surprising, nor can the feasibility or cost of any element be determined until the committee has completed its work and produced a plan that could be reviewed by the nation as a whole as well as The Congress.

Finally, I think it would be beneficial that those who support an initiative like the Green New Deal to remind the Media whenever they can that you would appreciate more specifics and less tactical framing. It would be helpful in our social media discussions of subjects like these we include the specifics whenever possible and not just whether we support or oppose them.

 

 

  • Below is the specific language of the Green New Deal Proposal legislation setting out the specifics of what the Proposed select committee is directed to study and on which it is to propose Legislation”

 

6) SCOPE OF THE PLAN FOR A GREEN NEW DEAL AND THE DRAFT LEGISLATION.—

(A) The Plan for a Green New Deal (and the draft legislation) shall be developed with the objective of reaching the following outcomes within the target window of 10 years from the start of execution of the Plan:
Dramatically expand existing renewable power sources and deploy new production capacity with the goal of meeting 100% of national power demand through renewable sources;
building a national, energy-efficient, “smart” grid;
upgrading every residential and industrial building for state-of-the-art energy efficiency, comfort, and safety;
eliminating greenhouse gas emissions from the manufacturing, agricultural and other industries, including by investing in local-scale agriculture in communities across the country;
eliminating greenhouse gas emissions from, repairing and improving transportation and other infrastructure, and upgrading water infrastructure to ensure universal access to clean water;
funding massive investment in the drawdown of greenhouse gases;
making “green” technology, industry, expertise, products and services a major export of the United States, with the aim of becoming the undisputed international leader in helping other countries transition to completely greenhouse gas neutral economies and bringing about a global Green New Deal.

(B) The Plan for a Green New Deal (and the draft legislation) shall recognize that a national, industrial, economic mobilization of this scope and scale is a historic opportunity to virtually eliminate poverty in the United States and to make prosperity, wealth and economic security available to everyone participating in the transformation. In furtherance of the foregoing, the Plan (and the draft legislation) shall:

provide all members of our society, across all regions and all communities, the opportunity, training and education to be a full and equal participant in the transition, including through a job guarantee program to assure a living wage job to every person who wants one;
diversify local and regional economies, with a particular focus on communities where the fossil fuel industry holds significant control over the labor market, to ensure workers have the necessary tools, opportunities, and economic assistance to succeed during the energy transition;
require strong enforcement of labor, workplace safety, and wage standards that recognize the rights of workers to organize and unionize free of coercion, intimidation, and harassment, and creation of meaningful, quality, career employment;
ensure a ‘just transition’ for all workers, low-income communities, communities of color, indigenous communities, rural and urban communities and the front-line communities most affected by climate change, pollution and other environmental harm including by ensuring that local implementation of the transition is led from the community level and by prioritizing solutions that end the harms faced by front-line communities from climate change and environmental pollution;
protect and enforce sovereign rights and land rights of tribal nations;
mitigate deeply entrenched racial, regional and gender-based inequalities in income and wealth (including, without limitation, ensuring that federal and other investment will be equitably distributed to historically impoverished, low income, deindustrialized or other marginalized communities in such a way that builds wealth and ownership at the community level);
include additional measures such as basic income programs, universal health care programs and any others as the select committee may deem appropriate to promote economic security, labor market flexibility, and entrepreneurism; and
deeply involve national and local labor unions to take a leadership role in the process of job training and worker deployment.

(C) The Plan for a Green New Deal (and the draft legislation) shall recognize that innovative public and other financing structures are a crucial component in achieving and furthering the goals and guidelines relating to social, economic, racial, regional and gender-based justice and equality and cooperative and public ownership set forth in paragraphs (2)(A)(i) and (6)(B). The Plan (and the draft legislation) shall, accordingly, ensure that the majority of financing of the Plan shall be accomplished by the federal government, using a combination of the Federal Reserve, a new public bank or system of regional and specialized public banks, public venture funds and such other vehicles or structures that the select committee deems appropriate, in order to ensure that interest and other investment returns generated from public investments made in connection with the Plan will be returned to the treasury, reduce taxpayer burden and allow for more investment.

Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: