Filed under: Business + Politics, Society + Media | Tags: Afghanistan, environmental movement, executive branch, Iraq, Obama, wind energy
By himself, Obama cannot clean up the environment, stop global warming, or create a single green job.
Stop for a second and really take this statement in. It may seem obvious, but with all the demands competing for Obama’s attention, an outsider might think US citizens have forgotten the basics of US Civics 101.
Pop quiz: what is the president’s job? Between signing statements and executive orders, we may have forgotten that it’s not the president’s job to make laws but to make sure they are being followed. His job is to make sure the laws are being “executed,” hence the “executive” branch.
Today, our president is our chief economic adviser who talks with the media about spending more money that we can possibly conceptualize. But just because he isn’t a legislature, that does not mean he can’t help the environmental movement.
Take his power as commander and chief of the military. Obama has the power to bring the troops home from Iraq and Afghanistan but instead is sending 17,000 more soldiers to Afghanistan and staying at least one more year in Iraq.
The environmental damages caused by war may be obvious. But the real killer is all the money we are spending abroad when we have so many problems at home. The congressional budget office estimates that we will spend 2.6 trillion dollars fighting these wars by the end of 2010.
It all comes back to spending and what we choose to spend our money on. Look at how much we spend on defense as opposed to energy. Look at how much we spend on education compared to health care. If we taught people how to eat healthy and prevented our ground water and food supply from being contaminated, would we need to spend so much on health care years down the line? If we spend a trillion dollars on wind turbines, would we really need to fight wars over oil?
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