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The Path to Hell is Paved with Good Intentions: CFL’s (Compact Fluorescent Lights)

roadtohell

Bill in Question: Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007

The good intentions: To move the United States toward greater energy independence and security, to increase the production of clean renewable fuels, to protect consumers, to increase the efficiency of products, buildings, and vehicles, to promote research on and deploy greenhouse gas capture and storage options, and to improve the energy performance of the Federal Government, and for other purposes.

The reality:

  • Incandescent light bulbs will be illegal by 2014
  • Less freedom for consumers to choose what kind of light bulbs they want to buy
  • Less freedom for manufacturers of light bulbs to choose what kind of light bulbs they want to make
  • CFL’s are hazardous waste due to the mercury content
  • CFL’s can emit “dirty electricity” which can trigger migraine headaches, rashes, and other ailments in some people.  (For more info, watch this video).

Those who benefit: The environmental lobbyists.

Conclusion: As a user of many CFL light bulbs, I personally have no problem with them, but what I do have a problem with is the government telling us which products we have to buy.  This type of government invention distorts the free markets, prevents consumers from deciding what they feel is best for them, and grants CFL manufacturers a monopoly over the light bulb market.  There are many people who despise CFL’s because they don’t like the light quality they emit, while others choose incandescents because of their financial situation.  I am a firm believer that you can’t force people to care for something, and in this case these aforementioned people are going to be pissed off for having to pay for a product they don’t want.  In addition, CFL’s haven’t been on the market that long relatively compared to incandescents, therefore there’s always the potential for unforeseen consequences of a new technology (similarly, look at what the ethanol scam has done to the agriculture business and the global economy; one of many examples of a so called “green program” gone wrong).  If there’s a silver lining to this dark cloud, it’s that LED technology is getting much better and most consumers can buy these light bulbs as an alternative to the CFL’s once the incandescents are made illegal.  LED’s are far superior to CFL’s almost every respect (including being the cleanest of the three light bulbs as far as “dirty electricity”), but the only problem is they are more expensive.  I will end this blog by quoting a hilarious article posted on Break the Matrix:

First they came for the automobile industry, And I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t in the automobile industry;
And then they came for the financial sector, And I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a banker;
And then they came for the rich, And I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t rich;
And then . . . they came for the light bulbs . . . And by that time nobody could even see who the hell they were coming for.

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