Does President Obama plan to move to the center in response to his overwhelming rejection at the polls on Nov. 2? No way! Instead, he is moving to implement, through executive action, two of the most controversial items in his 2010 agenda -- a carbon tax and pollution permit system and a ban on the use of secret ballots in union elections.
Through executive action by the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) and the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), the Obama administration is planning to effectuate both policies without asking Congress.
Never mind that he couldn't persuade even a top-heavy Democratic Congress to pass either program. Or that public opinion polls show massive rejection of both measures. Or that each is a sure job killer by itself -- and together, they are even worse. This arrogant, ideologically driven radical is determined to have his way, and the public be damned!
The EPA is currently soliciting public comments for its plan to use the Clean Air Act of 1970 to regulate carbon dioxide emissions. The Clean Air Act, as the name indicates, is designed to fight against pollution -- unhealthy chemicals that are belched into the air by smokestacks. It was passed to fight sulfur dioxide, particulates, nitrous oxides and other chemicals that cause human diseases. To use it to fight carbon dioxide -- which we all breathe without ill effects -- because of concerns about global warming is a perversion of the law.
Worse, because the Clean Air Act is designed to protect public health by measuring aggregate pollution in each geographic area, it limits economic development in communities where the pollution levels exceed prescribed standards. But carbon dioxide doesn't poison anyone. It makes no sense to ban factory expansion in areas where the nature of the industries is that there will be high carbon dioxide levels (like oil area of Texas and Louisiana). But that's what the EPA plans to do, virtually making economic growth illegal in large parts of the United States.
Meanwhile, Craig Becker, the former chief counsel of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) -- now the head of the NLRB -- has secured a 3-2 party line majority to repeal the Dana decision, which mandates secret ballots in unionization elections. The NLRB will rule that if a majority of workers check off that they want a union on cards, then the union will automatically be approved without a secret ballot vote of the entire workforce.