Hypocrisy and the debt

Rappahannock News - - COMMENT -

How many of us, over the years, have re­lied on the En­ergy Star la­bel to help us choose the most en­ergy ef­fi­cient ap­pli­ances? The pro­gram, ini­ti­ated with bi­par­ti­san sup­port in 1992, has en­abled fam­i­lies, busi­nesses, schools and hos­pi­tals to lower their en­ergy bills while se­ri­ously re­duc­ing car­bon emis­sions at the same time.

You’d think such a win-win pro­gram would be as sa­cred as moth­er­hood and ap­ple pie. But no. In its first bud­get, the Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion ze­roed out the En­ergy Star pro­gram, and Rap­pa­han­nock Con­gress­man Tom Garrett sup­ports killing it.

I emailed the con­gress­man urg­ing him to re­con­sider his po­si­tion. In his re­ply, he stated that “I be­lieve that con­sumers are ca­pa­ble of de­ter­min­ing on their own which goods will best suit their needs.”

Right. Af­ter tak­ing the kids to school, get­ting to work, fix­ing din­ner, run­ning er­rands, do­ing all the house­hold chores, etc. etc., we all on our own will do all the re­search and prod­uct test­ing nec­es­sary to find out which goods are the most en­ergy ef­fi­cient. LOL.

But more in­ter­est­ingly, the con­gress­man’s re­ply didn’t stop there. He also as­sured me that he was wor­ried about our “dan­ger­ously high na­tional debt.”

“I be­lieve that the debt is one of the great­est threats to the well­be­ing of our na­tion and fu­ture gen­er­a­tions,” his email went on. "We have a re­spon­si­bil­ity to pay off that debt rather than con­tinue to add to it.”

This was writ­ten in Novem­ber of 2017. A lit­tle more than six weeks later Con­gress­man Garrett voted for the tax cut bill that by the most con­ser­va­tive es­ti­mates will in­crease the na­tional debt by more than $1 tril­lion.

The pub­lic needs to take note of hypocrisy in its rep­re­sen­ta­tives. And it needs to pay care­ful at­ten­tion to the next wor­thy pro­grams that Con­gress­man Garrett will try to elim­i­nate in the com­ing year.

ANN CRITTENDEN Flint Hill

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