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“The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the enemy of the human race,” says Andrew Leonard. (Thanks, Jamais, for the link.)

A new television ad says that proposed climate change legislation would transform the American way of life. Is that supposed to be a bad thing?

Yeah, lot of people make that claim, but the Chamber’s ad sets a new record for political idiocy. I guess they think that all the companies investing in profitably driving down their carbon emissions — including many of their members! — are as dumb as they think all the rest of us are.

In a new television advertisement, two freezing Americans are shown bundled up in winter clothes from head to toe, while inside their own home, and even under the covers of their own bed. The husband fries his breakfast eggs over a candle and is forced to jog, along with a horde of other fully dressed, briefcase-wielding salary slaves, in the middle of the street to work.
Blame it on the environmentalists, says the United States Chamber of Commerce, which paid for the ad. Passage of the Lieberman-Warner cap-and-trade climate bill, says the Chamber, “will usher in a Dark Age for America.”

Putting in place an effective cap-and-trade system for greenhouse gas emissions will be more complicated and likely will cost a pretty penny. Of course, the costs of not doing anything at all could easily be much greater. But the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, apparently, doesn’t think too highly of hedging one’s bets and preparing for the future. They’d rather resort to infantile scare tactics that insult the intelligence of the American public.

I’m reminded at times like these of Napoleon’s wonderful admonition:
“Never ascribe to malice, that which can be adequately explained by incompetence.” Except in this case I’m not so sure.