Climate-change cost overruns, the anti-crime ‘counter-revolution’ and other commentary


Albany watch: cost overruns due to climate change

The Beacon Island wind tower project “is months behind schedule and has doubled in price even before construction begins,” notes James E. Hanley of the Empire Center. Expect more of such “major cost overruns as officials seek to radically transform the state’s economy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions” according to New York’s Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act. Indeed, “the iron law of mega projects is that they come in on budget, over time, over and over again.” Hmm: “Implementation of the CLCPA is expected to cost about $300 billion,” but if those costs double, they outweigh the assumed benefits, for “a loss of $6,500 to $13,000 for every New York resident.”

Ukraine Bureau: Don’t blame NATO; Blame Putin

The idea “that NATO expansion was primarily responsible” for “the Russo-Ukrainian war,” pushed most emphatically by the political scientist John Mearsheimer, “is dead wrong on so many counts that protesting it” is like telling to “members of Flat Earth society that they may be out of step with reality,” argues Alexander J. Motyl in The Hill. “The idea that the West would ‘push’ NATO eastwards had absolutely no basis in reality.” In fact, “the fact that Sweden’s and Finland’s choice to join NATO has not provoked a Russian clash of arms shows that the problem was not NATO enlargement; it is Ukraine, which according to Putin has no right to exist.” In addition, “piles of evidence” show that “Putin has had expansive plans from his first days in office.”

Eye on Congress: Take Back Your Power!

“Why would a legislature give away its own core power?” William Yeatman asks Reason, as the Supreme Court considers Congress’s decision to allow the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to operate with “a blank check”: for funding, it “simply takes what it wants from the Federal Reserve.” This follows decades in which “Congress has abandoned meaningful involvement in federal bureaucracy” as it means “avoiding tough decisions allows lawmakers to evade political accountability.” Still, the Framers warned, “A backsliding Congress undermines the separation of powers, which is a critical bulwark for freedom.” The fact is: “Congress needs to rediscover its ambition, period. A good place to start would be for lawmakers to proactively seize power from the CFPB.”

Neocon: the anti-crime ‘counter-revolution’

Americans “outraged” by the decline in public safety have just had “a good week.” cheers Abe Greenwald from Commentary. Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, who pushed for police cuts and oversaw “a 25-year high” in homicides, was voted out. And President Biden passed a GOP resolution to overturn a pro-criminal DC law. It is part of a “counter-revolution pushing back” on the 2020 “radical” drive to loosen law enforcement. First, “low-profile defunding advocates in cities like Seattle and Buffalo were defeated at the polls,” while others, like San Francisco Mayor London Breed, turned to anti-crime rhetoric. Then, in June, San Francisco recalled its lawless district attorney Chesa Boudin. “Going forward, the Democrats will choose the wrong side of the public safety problem at their own political peril.”

Cultural Critic: The Joys of Teaching in Prison

Desperate humanities professors might envy her teaching “in a high-security men’s prison.” writes Brooke Allen in The Wall Street Journal: The men are “highly motivated and hardworking,” some “would hold their own in any graduate seminar. Having rough real-world experiences means they are less likely to fall prey to easy ideologies.” And “they have preserved their attention spans, while that of modern students has been destroyed by their dependence on smartphones.” But “If inmates . , being able to write eloquent essays without the aid of technology and get through a school year without cheating, is it too much to ask of college students to do the same? Or asking professors to try and create an atmosphere where these habits are prevalent?”

— Compiled by The Post Editorial Board

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