Posted by Charity on April 24th, 2006

Ever wonder what our citizen legislature is up to under the golden dome? Why, they are looking for ways to make Vermont more expensive to live in, of course!

The latest offender is a bill that will mandate that only “energy efficient” appliances can be sold in Vermont.

You can read all the gory details in the Free Press here.

According to the article, “Some appliances will be more expensive because they have to meet stricter standards, some of the bill’s backers acknowledged.”

But, they don’t really care as long as they are fulfilling their liberal obligation to make it look like they are doing something important, while in fact they are really just trying to break Vermont into that number one spot as the most expensive and business unfriendly state in the union.

Great job, guys! That’s what we keep electing you for.

Among the types of appliances covered under the bill are furnaces, transformers, power supply cords like those used to recharge cell phones, and some types of floor lamps. The Department of Public Service will be charged with setting the efficiency standards. They can also add appliances that are in any of the categories listed in the bill. And of course, the legislature can always pass more legislation to add new categories.

I think it goes without saying that I dislike this legislation because I am an evil conservative, who hates the environment, but another reason to dislike this legislation is because it is another example of the government taking away our freedom as consumers and as business owners.

What I don’t understand is how, in a state full of liberals, we don’t already have an overwhelming voluntary compliance with the policy of purchasing energy efficient appliances. Maybe the legislature should call for a summer study committee to look into that.

On the bright side, VPIRG likes the bill, as does “Republican” Chittenden County Senator Diane Snelling.

Phew! That makes me feel better!

Says the VPIRG environmental advocate, “”If this goes into effect, it would generate enough in energy savings to equal the output of 26 wind turbines.”

Twenty-six fewer wind turbines needed? Maybe there is a bright side to this legislation after all.

7 Responses to “consumer freedom is overrated anyway”

  1. “‘What is there to prevent a Vermonter from going to New Hampshire?’ asked Sen. Mark Shepard, R-Bennington.”

    Half of the covered items are easily available on the internet; in fact, anyone who doesn’t use comparison-shopping tools to get the lowest prices on them is throwing money away as it is. Like the 1% local option sales tax, this will just put more money into out-of-state merchants’ coffers.

  2. Agreed anonymous…

    Don’t give them ideas about a summer committee Charity, they just might do it ;)

    Now, it’s not like I’m against conserving energy, or being energy efficient… I’m just against the government increasing regulations to companies and the market.

    It’s funny, at our last NPA meeting, we had someone prsent from the Alliance for Climate Action, and they had a list of 10 suggestions to help with the 10% challenge (www.10percentchallenge.org), and as I read over the list, I realized we were already doing 9 of 10 just to reduce our costs to our budget.

    As I see it, if conserving energy is helpful to a person they can do it on their own without any government intervention.

    Good post Charity :)

  3. Yeah, heaven forbid we have wind turbines.

    I love how everyone here is all hot and bothered over the evils of nuclear power and the need for renewable energy – but when it comes to actual tangible solutions (like wind) its the same old “not in my backyard” thing over and over again.

    Instead we choose to have legislation which tells people what they can and can’t own/use in their own homes. I don’t know about anyone else but in my book that is even more obtrusive and offensive than having to occasionally catch a glimpse of a “hideous” turbine in my otherwise unmarred view.

    But then again, what do I know. I’m just another ignorant conservative (who also hates the environment).

  4. Yeah, just keep that head firmily imbedded way up there….

  5. Wind turbines are pretty.

  6. I’m sorry, but I’m not a big fan of wind turbines. A couple here or there is fine and dandy, but it makes no sense to me to have large wind farms in a state that is so dependent on scenery-related tourism. Put the wind turbines in a state that is ugly and flat.

    The beauty of a diverse country is that each state can provide the others with what they are best at providing. Let us provide the kick-butt maple syrup and some other state can do the wind-power thing.

  7. Bob the Optimizer
    April 25th, 2006 at 10:14 pm

    Yeah,
    Wind farms are ugly. It’s better to have a few nuclear power plants nestled on hillsides next to rivers! I think two more would power the state nicely. Plus all the liberals would have something to protest every weekend! AND, all the old timer “no nukes” types from the 70s could lament the futility of it all.
    Dare to dream!