Friday, January 26, 2007

Running on Empty

"Running on Empty," Tom Friedman today calls for the Democrats to step up and take the lead on two major issues, climate change and Iraq. Hear, hear to that. His suggestion on climate change is similar to what Stephane Dion has been advocating in Canada:
The really bold, transformative — and popular — initiative Mr. Bush should have offered would either be a national cap-and-trade system for controlling CO2 emissions by utilities, manufacturers and autos, or a carbon tax. Both would create economic incentives for us to get rid of appliances, buildings and cars that emit a lot of CO2 and to invent and purchase those that don’t.

But there is no reason that the Democrats could not right now put a cap-and-trade bill on Mr. Bush’s desk themselves by spring, Mr. Krupp said, “and I think Bush would sign it.”
I wouldn't hold my breath on Bush signing it, but it's a worthwhile goal.

And on Iraq:
Let the troop surge be accompanied and reinforced by what the Baker-Hamilton commission proposed: a regional conference that puts Syria, Iran, Jordan and Saudi Arabia around a table with Iraqis to try to stabilize the place. And that requires that America brandish carrots and sticks with all the parties. If a real regional conference doesn’t work, then Democrats who want to just set a date to withdraw will have an even stronger case because we will truly have tried everything. But let’s try everything: a surge of diplomacy, not just troops.
Diplomacy, diplomacy, diplomacy...regional diplomacy said Jim Webb...