The News-Post contains a column by Jonah Goldberg concerning the “Green New Deal.” Mr. Goldberg makes much of the similarity of the current Green New Deal to Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal. He seems to think that lack of novelty is a fatal flaw. Governing is not a contest to find a new policy.
The world changes constantly, supplying all the novelty we need. What we need is the right policy to fit the conditions of today. In fact, a policy that has been tried may be preferred since we know something about how it might work (or not work). I don’t think Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez ever said the policy was all new, in fact, calling it the “Green New Deal” is a clear reference to FDR’s policy. The New Deal endeavored pragmatically to re-establish work and commerce when the capitalistic system had collapsed. President Hoover was locked in the capitalistic ideology and refused to use government to help unemployed workers. Once the U.S. was dragged into WWII, 12.5 million men were put under arms and the government no longer needed to encourage consumption and create jobs. Seeing that the world has changed and responding is a sign of sanity. Seeing that our one world is changing for the worse is a sign of sanity. Recycling programs that might reduce the damage of current unwise actions is little short of heroic.
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and others have gotten the Green New Deal to center stage. Bravo. Mr. Goldberg’s carping that the Green New Deal is not really new is irrelevant. If that is all he can say, it is really praise by faint damning. The question is, “Can this work?”
I think we need to try it.