Investing? What’s Investing?

By February 9, 2009Energy

Brian Moran, a Democratic candidate for governor in Virginia, appeared this weekend on Clean Skies Sunday, a public affairs show produced by the Clean Skies Foundation, advocates of natural gas.

Moran sells himself as the most environmentally aware and sensitive and visionary candidate; he opposes offshore drilling for natural gas and oil, and he is highly critical of any new coal development.

Moran also wants to require that 25 percent of Virginia’s energy come from renewable sources by the year 2025. Quite a goal, unachievable without complete disruption of the economy, higher jobs-killing electricity rates, and even more government controls.

The candidate couches these arguments in terms of “investment,” that favorite word for describing spending of any kind.  Politicians have misused it as long as we can remember, as in “Invest in X, Y, and Z,” as opposed to “Spend on X, Y, and Z.” It used to be a mostly Democratic trope, but now it’s ubiquitous.

This was a new misusage from Moran: “We can strengthen and rebuild our economy by producing renewable energy, clean, investing in wind and solar and renewable portfolio standards.”

Investing in renewable porfolio standards?

One hopes that’s just a slip of the tongue. If that terminology ever takes off, we’ll have people saying things like, “We need to invest in these new product safety rules” or “We need to invest in banning smoking in cars if children are present.”

It’s nonsensical. And reminds us to reread this.

The interview is available at, starting 8 minutes in the February 8 broadcast. It’s a very well done public policy and advocacy program.

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