Matt Kibbe

Additionally, the Obama-endorsed “green” initiative in Germany has caused significant economic troubles. The German think tank Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung has released a study revealing that German taxpayers pay $240,000 to fund a single “green” job. All of the “green” jobs created by the government are temporary jobs that will cease to exist once the federal funding stops. While Germany leads the world in solar panel installation, the study found that subsidizing “green” jobs had a number of offsetting impacts including job losses, higher electricity prices and crowding out more efficient energy generation.

America should strive to learn from Europe’s failed “green” jobs experiment. Instead of implementing a similar initiative, we should follow the Reagan administration’s 1981 energy plan which read “all Americans are involved in making energy policy. When individual choices are made with a maximum of personal understanding and a minimum of government restraints, the result is the most appropriate energy policy.”

All energy sources should be allowed to freely compete so that consumers can choose the form of energy that we want to use. In order to help expand green energy, it is vital to remove unnecessary regulatory red tape that deters private investment. The expanded role of government in “green” initiatives has crowded out private investment in energy-efficient products.

Most importantly, Obama’s proposed European-style “green” agenda infringes on individual liberty. Americans should be free to invest in the energy type of their choosing. However, subsidizing “green” jobs will force taxpayers to use their hard-earned money to involuntarily support initiatives that will potentially destroy jobs and increase energy costs.

Morally, we should not use the power of government to force environmental values on others. If we truly want to make a positive human impact on the environment while respecting liberty, we should lead by example and allow individuals the choice to support green energy with their own money.

Matt Kibbe

Matt Kibbe is the president of FreedomWorks.

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