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Paul Schaffner, Published January 09 2010

Cap and trade about leadership

The principle at hand is not conservative or liberal political philosophy. The issue is not the science/religion of the global warming concept. The issue is leadership. North Dakota needs proactive leadership in Washington that has our best interests in mind.

I believe it would be a waste of our Washington delegation’s advertised influence and seniority not to sway the political concept of global warming. Let us assume the concept of global warming is 100 percent accurate. And, let us assume global warming will be reduced by limiting greenhouse gases.

Were alternative solutions to cap and trade brought forth by our delegation? Would responsible North Dakota leadership endorse a presidential candidate who publicly stated, “I will tax the coal industry into submission?” Were coalitions created with leaders like Sen. Jim Webb, D-Va., to offer a coordinated proactive action to defend the coal industry? The answer on all counts is no.

North Dakota should look to urban America to evaluate “sacrifices” to combat global warming. The late Sen. Edward Kennedy in June 2005 quashed a wind farm in Cape Cod Sound for aesthetics. The state of California has denied the construction of wind farms off its coast on two occasions for aesthetics.

If global warming were so imminent why has the state of California not made mass public transportation its

No. 1 priority? This being stated: Cap and trade is about our way of life and the defense of our prerogatives.

Finally, the urbanization of the ruling Democratic Party power base should not mitigate our delegation’s responsibility to North Dakota. The delegation should look west and North Dakota residents should look for change.