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Actions Speak Louder Than Words

Here’s a letter that I sent on January 30th to the New York Times; it was not published:


Want evidence that some prominent Democrats agree with most Republicans that climate change is not the existential threat that today’s Democratic Party asserts it to be? Look no further than the demand by Democratic Sens. Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock of Georgia, and Sen. Sherrod Brown of Ohio, that tariffs be raised on Chinese solar panels – a demand that has yet to be rejected by Pres. Biden (“Georgia Senators Press Biden for Tougher Tariffs on Chinese Solar Panels,” Jan. 29). The problem, these senators assert, is that Beijing subsidizes Chinese manufacturers of solar panels.

Because such subsidies make solar panels more abundant and affordable, anyone who truly believes that climate change poses an existential threat – and that transitioning to green energy is a necessary means of avoiding this peril – would earnestly welcome Beijing’s subsidies and be grateful that Americans can buy solar panels on the cheap. That instead we get whining about inexpensive Chinese solar panels tells us all we need to know about at least some Democrats’ attitude toward climate change.

Donald J. Boudreaux
Professor of Economics
Martha and Nelson Getchell Chair for the Study of Free Market Capitalism at the Mercatus Center
George Mason University
Fairfax, VA 22030