RPT-UPDATE 6-California sues carmakers over global warmingFirst of all, greenhouse gases as a cause for global warming / global cooling is so far from being an established truth that passing legislation on it at this point in time is worse than useless. I personally have major doubts as to man's impact on global temperatures, but even if it were proven to be completely true, this is still an idiotic piece of legislation. It's akin to blaming firearm manufacturers for firearm deaths, blaming swimming pool installers for drowning deaths, or blaming McDonald's for obesity.
By Michael Kahn
SAN FRANCISCO, Sept 20 (Reuters) - California sued six of the world's largest automakers over global warming on Wednesday, charging that greenhouse gases from their vehicles have caused billions of dollars in damages.
The lawsuit is the first of its kind to seek to hold manufacturers liable for the damages caused by their vehicles' emissions, state Attorney General Bill Lockyer said.
It comes less than a month after California lawmakers adopted the nation's first global warming law mandating a cut in greenhouse gas emissions.
In the end though, this sort of feel-good-do-bad legislation doesn't have as much an effect on the automakers as it does its customers - regardless of them winning the lawsuit or not - the cost will just end up being passed down to the us, the consumers. And not just the California consumers - but nationwide.
You can see this effect in the California emissions requirements - both cars and gasoline in California are much higher than the national average. The costs of such legislation are always passed onto the consumer.
And all for a dubious benefit of "reduced"* greenhouse gases.
A few years back, California tried to ban "high-powered sniper rifles", specifically the Barrett .50 cal rifle. You know, the ones you could shoot down an airliner with, assuming you have the capability to hit a small portion of a large target moving at a few hundred miles per hour, from a few hundred meters away, adjusting for elevation and windage. You know, the ones that no terrorist has ever been caught using, that no crimes have been committed with. But of course, California law enforcement was exempt from the ban. Guns for me but not for thee (which can be applied to many different things whenever the government is involved).
As part of the ban campaign, the LAPD paraded around a Barrett .50 cal rifle, using it for photo ops, showing how scary it was, etc. Never you mind that the Barrett was already outlawed in California due to its detachable magazine. Why let a little thing like the law get in the way of making a point?
Here's where it gets delicious: When the LAPD sent one of their Barrett .50 cal rifles back to Barrett Firearms for service.... well, I'll let Ronnie Barrett do the talking:
When I returned to my office from Los Angeles, I found an example of our need for mutual cooperation. Your department had sent one of your 82A1 rifles in to us for service. All of my knowledge in the use of my rifle in the field of law enforcement had been turned upside down by witnessing how your department used yours. Not to protect and serve, but for deception, photo opportunities, and to further an ill-conceived effort that may result in the use of L.A. taxpayer monies to wage losing political battles in Washington against civil liberties regarding gun ownership.
Please excuse my slow response on the repair service of the rifle. I am battling to what service I am repairing the rile for. I will not sell, nor service, my rifles to those seeking to infringe upon the Constitution and the crystal clear rights it affords individuals to own firearms.
The parallels are obvious, but not completely symmetrical - for there is no constitutional right to produce automobiles. But I await with great joy for the time when California pushes an automaker too far and they decide to stop selling to California altogether.
There just aren't enough Prius (Priii?) in the world to fulfill that demand.
* I say "reduced" because no matter how much we Americans reduce our greenhouse gases, we are far outpaced by China and India's production and growth, who have no such desire nor pressure to reduce their output.