Command and Control

From Fox News, “Administration Warns of ‘Command-and-Control’ Regulation Over Emissions“:

The Obama administration is warning Congress that if it doesn’t move to regulate greenhouse gases, the Environmental Protection Agency will take a “command-and-control” role over the process in a way that could hurt business.

The warning, from a top White House economic official who spoke Tuesday on condition of anonymity, came on the eve of EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson’s address to the international conference on climate change in Copenhagen, Denmark.

Command-and-control economies are the hallmarks of totalitarian states.

UPDATE: Here’s the full quote from the official speaking on background:

“If you don’t pass this legislation, then … the EPA is going to have to regulate in this area,” the official said. “And it is not going to be able to regulate on a market-based way, so it’s going to have to regulate in a command-and-control way, which will probably generate even more uncertainty.”

Uncertainty is indeed a serious economic threat. But a command-and-control takeover of huge swaths of economy, that’s a threat to liberty.

UPDATE (Thursday, 3:50 p.m.): Charles Krauthammer:

A threat and an amazing admission. It admits how bad the law in the Senate [is] today — that is being held up on – cap-and-trade. [It] in and of itself is going to kill jobs.

But secondly, if you [Congress] don’t do that, we [the administration] will do something worse — impose the EPA regulations, which is cap without trade. There isn’t a market mechanism. You can’t sell or purchase a permit to emit CO2.

So it’s command and control, which is a polite way of saying Soviet control, meaning it’s all regulation … And it is an amazing admission, and it is a kind of blackmail. Either you do this in the Senate and pass a bill or we will do it unilaterally.

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