US President Barack Obama is expected to allow states to set their own stricter standards for vehicle exhaust emissions, his aides have said.Here's half a cheer for a small-but-unprincipled nod in the direction of decentralization ... and I suppose we'd all better enjoy it, because it might be a long time before there's another one. Why "unprincipled?" Because it should go without saying that the "several states" (hear that hollow laugh!) were free to set stricter air-quality standards, or looser ones, or none at all. There shouldn't be any federal standards with which to compare state ones -- if any -- since our famous Dead Constitution makes no explicit grant of power or authority to the feds for setting or enforcing any such standards. "Unprincipled" because King Rainbow Brite is no less a tyrant than was Former King Chimpy for issuing such decrees, even though the current king sees fit to be slightly more permissive than the last one. Free people wouldn't find themselves being grateful for minor favors that can be granted today and denied tomorrow.
It would overturn a Bush administration decision which favoured a national standard for vehicle pollution.
California, a leader in environmental protection, and other states had sought exemptions to set their own standards.
Ah, but His Diverse Highness isn't done yet:
President Obama is also expected to order the transportation department to come up with new short-term rules on how carmakers can improve fuel efficiency.Never mind the poor Dead Constitution, and niggling questions about how it is that the current tenant in the White House has the power to say how many miles a motor vehicle must travel per gallon of fuel expended ... why's Obama limiting himself to pathetic half-measures? Why not require 50 mi/gal? Why not 75? Why not make it illegal for anyone to travel more than 30 miles in a single day by motorized transport? Why not ...
A 2007 law required that new cars and trucks produced by 2020 obtain 35 miles per gallon of fuel (about 13km/litre), a 40% increase over the current standard, Associated Press news agency said.
However, Mr Bush did not put in place the regulations to enable the law to be carried out.
The new rules Mr Obama wants put in place would mean the new standard is reached by 2011, the New York Times said.
Uh, maybe it's a good thing Pres. Sunshine isn't reading this. I'm sure he has plenty of hideous ideas already, without any help from this nobody.