The “Burdensome Regulations” Myth

By Bill Maher

Remember all the rhetoric about Obama’s EPA making it almost impossible to create energy to power our cities? How Obama’s launched a “war on coal” and how his focus on clean energy and lowering our carbon output was going to spike your energy bills and kill jobs? Mitch McConnell even sent out letters to every state saying they should ignore the new rules. It’s the same refrain we hear every time a new set of environmental regulations gets announced. And yet somehow when we press “power” on our remote control, my TV still turns on and yours does too.

Well, according to the Washington Post, despite all of those warnings about what would happen if the White House went ahead with its regulations on pollution from coal-fired power plants, the utility companies have complied fairly easily and nobody really cares. Even in Mitch McConnell’s home state:  

“Yet more striking is what has happened since: Kentucky’s government and electric utilities have quietly positioned themselves to comply with the rule — something state officials expect to do with relatively little effort.” 

And the same is true in many other states as well: “…despite dire warnings and harsh political rhetoric, many states are already on track to meet their targets, even before the EPA formally announces them.” Said one energy official, “We’ve yet to find a state that is going to have a real technical challenge meeting this.”

Something to remember the next time you hear a Republican talk about “burdensome regulations” or “the EPA’s war on yada-yada.” You’ll never find an environmental regulation they haven’t tried to kill with this type of rhetoric. It’s just what they do, what they’re pre-programmed to say. So now that just about everyone is meeting the new regulations, and energy prices haven’t spiked, and the air should be a bit cleaner because of them, and carbon emission is lower, what do they say now?