In 1995, the VENONA project revealed that there were pro-Soviet, anti-American saboteurs and spies who infiltrated the State Department, Treasury, Office of Strategic Services, and the White House during the Roosevelt and Truman Administrations. The project revealed that the infiltration into government agencies was more pervasive than anyone originally thought. Today, we have evidence of even more government agents actively working against Americans and their livelihood. It’s an entire government agency, in fact. Meet the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
In July 2010, the EPA overruled the State Department despite having no jurisdiction and blocked the Keystone pipeline project with the blessing of President Obama. EPA’s action ended the prospect of up to 20,000 jobs, denied millions of dollars in tax revenue to several states, and continued America’s dependence on foreign oil. The Soviets wished they were that efficient.
J.C. Watts, a former Congressman from Oklahoma, one of the states affected by the project, wrote in The Washington Times, “[T]he EPA - spurred on by its radical environmental allies - is pushing for more and more job-killing regulations on industries that could play a critical role in our nation's economic recovery. Through regulatory uncertainty and demands for expensive environmental upgrades, the EPA is slowly but surely trying to drive a nail into the coffin of job creators like those in the energy sector.”
Of course, it’s possible for a government agency to simply be incompetent or ignorant to its citizens’ needs. This is not the case with the EPA. They are an agency paid for by American taxpayers that actively works against Americans’ economic interests in order to accomplish their political agenda. Like a villain revealing his devious plan to James Bond, EPA Regional Director Al Armendariz told a group in Texas that his mission at the agency was to “crucify” oil companies into compliance. Armendariz resigned after the video surfaced. Last week FreeEnterprise.com noted that Armendariz was a no-show for a scheduled testimony to the House Energy and Commerce Committee. That same day his signature was seen on the sign-in sheet at the Sierra Club.
Bond villains aren’t this insolent.
The EPA doesn’t just have the Obama administration and State Department under its thumb. They subvert Congress and win case after case in court. Former Congressman Bob Barr recently wrote in Politico, “[J]udges have permitted the EPA to do whatever its policymakers deem necessary to force compliance with its broad legal mandates — whether pursuant to the Endangered Species Act, the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act, the Water Quality Act, the Motor Vehicle Air Polluting Control Act or other of the many dozens of laws subject to full or partial EPA jurisdiction.”
Take one example, the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act. As with the Keystone pipeline project and oil industry, the EPA sought to regulate and restrict coal mining into non-existence. While many mining regulations are issued on a state by state basis, the federal government via the EPA oversees the mining sites. So, at their discretion the EPA can issue fines even if mines are operating within their own state regulations. Not surprisingly, the EPA has stricter regulations than many states, so determinations are made by bureaucrats rather than by local governments and residents. Additionally, other federal laws enforced by the EPA, such as the Clean Water Act, the Safe Drinking Water Act, and the Toxic Substances Control Act, also apply to the mining industry. However, this already overbearing regulatory framework is not enough. The EPA will not be satisfied until the energy industry is at its knees.
The EPA recently issued the Cross-State Air Transport Rule and the Boiler MACT Rule in order to set limits for power plants in 27 states. According to Tom Borelli of the National Center for Public Policy Research, “The costs to comply with these regulations are staggering. An analysis by the National Economic Research Associates (NERA) estimates that these two regulations alone will cost the utility sector almost $18 billion each year resulting in higher electricity prices and significant job losses.”
Does the EPA expect the energy industry to comply with their financially punitive rules and regulations? No, Mr. Bond, I expect you to die.
The EPA’s short-term goal is to cripple the energy industry. The long-term effects are no different than the goals of America’s enemies – suffocate America’s economy and make her beholden to foreign entities in order to survive.
Be the first to read Lisa De Pasquale's column. Sign up today and receive Townhall.com delivered each morning to your inbox.