A conservative legal group wants the Energy Department (DOE) to withdraw microwave oven efficiency rules because the DOE didn’t seek public comment on its increased estimate of damage from carbon emissions.Right, so it's going to be microwave ovens this time. We already battled the crazy Bushian idea of having slightly more efficient lightbulbs, because freedom, and after the Bush administration decided on nationwide efficiency standards for ceiling fans so manufacturers didn't have to comply with fifty different sets of state regulations (well, 49—Texas doesn't really give a crap about anything anymore) we decided that was probably communism too, and now apparently the next big wound to freedom is going to be making microwave ovens that are slightly more efficient than the last batch. Oh, good.
I'm going to guess here that "microwave ovens" has been chosen to be the next big carbon battlefront simply because a manufacturer of microwave ovens cut the group a fat check to say so, and that's about it. Yes, yes, call me cynical. The particular challenge mounted is that the DOE did not adequately suss out public fee-fees on the department's most recent estimations of the "social costs" of carbon pollution, translation, was not sufficiently lobbied against by people paid vast sums of money to say that coal-fired power plants are where rainbows come from, so until that happens the earnest and I-am-not-at-all-implying-they-are-crooked-bastards-here diligently researched opinion of the conservative Landmark Legal Foundation is that we should be rescinding the new efficiency rules for microwave ovens entirely so that some unnamed but clearly put-upon subset of manufacturers do not needlessly have a sad.
If it's hard for me to take this as anything more than gimmick, it's only because it seems yet another case of business interests in America stealing anything that isn't nailed down, or at least doing their level best to try, and the one and only thing that determines whether an act of our government is "freedom" or "tyranny" is how big a check someone got to cash for saying so.