Leftists Should Thank Scott Pruitt

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Vox laments the "damage" EPA head Scott Pruitt is doing to the EPA "from within," even as it demonstrates ways environmentalists can slow down his campaign of regulatory rollback, delay, and non-enforcement.

But the following passage is what I find alarming, given how Pruitt's tactics and the GOP's refusal to argue for the abolishment of the EPA tee it up:

And, in the meantime, the government can keep subsidizing rights-violating noise-polluters like these. (Photo by Karsten Würth (@inf1783) on Unsplash)
The EPA is essentially an environmental public health agency. Its regulations directly affect millions of Americans as it diagnoses ailments in the air, water, and soil, to name a few, and prescribes solutions.

It has had a pretty great track record.

The Clean Air Act, for example, reduced conventional air pollutants by 70 percent since 1970. Substances like ozone, carbon monoxide, and lead have dangerous consequences for human health like heart attacks, strokes, and respiratory arrests.

According to one estimate, the legislation prevents 184,000 premature deaths each year and has saved $22 trillion in health care costs over a period of 20 years. [links omitted]
It is easy to make Pruitt and the GOP look bad -- and to smear capitalism -- when there is no one pointing out that proper protection of property rights could accomplish many of the "public health" goals of the EPA while also protecting our rights, rather than violating them. And not only does a positive case against the EPA remain unstated, so does the negative case, against preventative/regulatory law.

Pruitt may indeed give us breathing room, but it is coming at an even greater cost than I initially anticipated.

-- CAV

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