When the Wisconsin Libertarian Party joined a local clean energy group, RENEW Wisconsin, in favor of a solar energy proposal the website ClimateProgress headlined the event with "Unlikely Bedfellows" and reported it as "a surprising move."
Midwest Energy News responded with "unlikely alliance" and "unexpected supporter."
Even heavyweight Salon picked up the Reuters-distributed article and published it under what must have been intended as a jaw-dropping headline, "Wisconsin libertarians embrace solar power."
What the Wisconsin LP was endorsing was RENEW Wisconsin's Clean Energy Choice Initiative designed to pry loose the state's monopolistic grip on the provision of power.
Under the Initiative people who can't afford to install brand new renewable electric energy generators like solar panels can have a company install the systems on their property and then buy the energy from them. Or they can lease rather than buy solar panels, wind turbines and other generators.
So there never should have been any surprise. Libertarians have never been against clean energy; they've always been against coercion.
Almost from the very beginning of the so-called "Green Revolution" nearly every policy issue, every political position, every response to energy, pollution, environmental, recycling and global warming concerns proposed by the Green establishment has involved the use of government coercion.
It's more than enough to convince most conservatives and many libertarians that environmental issues mean little more to the political left than cover for imposing its statist collectivist ideology on the entire country.
Badger State LP Chair Paul Ehlers reflected that sentiment when he said, "Most of us don’t trust the environmental movement because they’ve cried wolf forever and ever. There are all kinds of philosophical disagreements."
"but at the end of the day," said Ehlers in reference to The Clean Energy Choice Initiative, "this was pretty much a no-brainer".
The no-brainer part is called "choice."
This should be a wakeup call to libertarians and environmentalists alike.
Real environmentalists, who actually care more about the environment than using quasi or phony environmental issues as vehicles for gaining political power, stuffing their wallets via million dollar taxpayer-funded government subsidies and expanding their personal egos as Environmental Warriors will increasingly look to libertarians as partners rather than antagonists.
Coercive environmentalism is all about politics. Greens should join libertarians and reject it.
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