The Biden administration’s Earth Day summit is being heralded by progressives as the United States’ triumphant return to the global stage on climate after years of neglect under President Trump. The summit is “an opportunity for the U.S. to come back onto the scene to show it is taking climate change seriously,” according to David Waskow, director of the International Climate Initiative.
But today’s progressives who believe global treaties and central planning will stop climate change, and inspire China to stop polluting, are wrong on the politics and policy. Just ask Bill Clinton.
In his 1992 Earth Day speech, then-candidate Clinton said, “I believe it is time for a new era in environmental protection, which uses the market to help us get our environment back on track—to recognize that Adam Smith’s invisible hand can have a green thumb.”
Sadly, many modern progressives prefer to use the climate debate to wage a proxy war against capitalism. They argue that the best way to combat climate change is through a “degrowth” agenda that seeks to decrease the economic activity that demands energy consumption. Proposals like the Green New Deal to advance unrelated socialist policies like government-run health care, free college, and universal basic income.