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Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Palin Pick Confirms McCain is No Green Candidate, Say Tom Friedman and Carl Pope

Thought the Republican's nomination of "Maverick" John McCain meant we'd finally see a showdown between two "green" candidates this November? Think again, say New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman and Sierra Club Executive Director Carl Pope. College students in particular should pay attention, Friedman writes.

"With his choice of Sarah Palin — the Alaska governor who has advocated drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and does not believe mankind is playing any role in climate change — for vice president," Friedman writes in his latest column, "John McCain has completed his makeover from the greenest Republican to run for president to just another representative of big oil.

Friedman takes the gloves off and hits McCain hard for his increasingly terrible energy policy:

Given the fact that Senator McCain deliberately avoided voting on all eight attempts to pass a bill extending the vital tax credits and production subsidies to expand our wind and solar industries, and given his support for lowering the gasoline tax in a reckless giveaway that would only promote more gasoline consumption and intensify our addiction to oil, and given his desire to make more oil-drilling, not innovation around renewable energy, the centerpiece of his energy policy — in an effort to mislead voters that support for drilling today would translate into lower prices at the pump today — McCain has forfeited any claim to be a green candidate.

Well said, Mr. Friedman.

Addressing college students in particular, Friedman goes on to plead, "please, students, when McCain comes to your campus and flashes a few posters of wind turbines and solar panels, ask him why he has been AWOL when it came to Congress supporting these new technologies."

I don't think we'll have a problem with that!

The Sierra Club's Pope makes some colorful additions to the column, getting his licks in with these two choice quotes:

“Back in June, the Republican Party had a round-up,” said Carl Pope, the executive director of the Sierra Club. “One of the unbranded cattle — a wizened old maverick name John McCain — finally got roped. Then they branded him with a big ‘Lazy O’ — George Bush’s brand, where the O stands for oil. No more maverick.

"One of McCain’s last independent policies putting him at odds with Bush was his opposition to drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge,” added Pope, “yet he has now picked a running mate who has opposed holding big oil accountable and been dismissive of alternative energy while focusing her work on more oil drilling in a wildlife refuge and off of our coasts. While the northern edge of her state literally falls into the rising Arctic Ocean, Sarah Palin says, ‘The jury is still out on global warming.’ She’s the one hanging the jury — and John McCain is going to let her."

Friedman ends by again appealing to college students:

"So, college students, don’t let anyone tell you that on the issue of green, this election is not important. It is vitally important, and the alternatives could not be more black and white."

Again. Not a problem. With a million young voters joining in Power Vote by November 4th, we'll send a clear message to elected officials that the Millennial Generation understands just how important this election is and just how much we need a clean, just and prosperous energy future.

Honestly, for as much as Friedman keeps writing about clean energy and college students, you'd think he'd start reading this blog...

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