“I will stay away from the math and instead tell you all a short story about my son.” Believe it or not, that is how former Washington State Department of Ecology Director and President of the Washington Environmental Council Jay Manning—the same Jay Manning who financially benefitted from shady contracts with extreme “green” organizations while advising Jay Inslee on his own extreme environmental policies—chose to start an email to lawmakers “justifying more taxpayer subsidies for electric vehicles.”
As the Washington Policy Center puts it, the sentence also “sums up the last ten years of Washington’s environmental policy.” It “reveals how environmental policy decisions have been made for more than a decade: forget the math and science and listen to an emotionally satisfying story.”
Manning’s opening line is not the only ridiculous aspect about his letter to legislators. The Washington Policy Center explains,
“Ironically, the story he told contradicts the point he was trying to make.
Manning, who also served as chief of staff to Governor Chris Gregoire before becoming a high-priced environmental lawyer/lobbyist, noted that his son recently leased a Nissan Leaf thanks to taxpayer subsidies. He wrote:
“‘…he leased a brand new Nissan Leaf. His first new car and boy is he excited. He doesn’t make a lot of money — he’s 25 and just getting started. Nevertheless, he made this purchase without our help and without borrowing money. He simply could not have done it without the benefit of the federal tax credit and the sales tax exemption he received as part of the lease.’
“Manning assumes that without subsides, the car would not have been purchased.
“People face this problem every day, however. They take out car loans. They save their money for a bit, take the bus for a while, and pay for the car themselves. Manning’s assumption is that the desire of buyers to buy an electric car is so weak they won’t tolerate any delay or pay for the car out of their own pocket…
“Indeed, as we noted previously, state data show that nearly half of the tax subsidies go to people living in the wealthiest ten percent of zip codes. The subsidies go to wealthy car buyers (and their children) instead of generating new car sales. These are the very people who have many options to purchase the cars they desire.
“Manning, however, sees the bright side of this, saying that half of the subsidies also go to people in the bottom 90 percent. Imagine for a moment left-wing politicians praising a tax cut because although half of the cuts went to the top ten percent, the other half didn’t. That demonstrates how much the environmental left has to suspend their own values to justify the policies they want.”
The opening statement and the logic that follows should come as no surprise when considering the source. Manning has help guide the last 20 years of environmental policy in Washington State and his record of success is, simply put, terrible. Everything from “‘green’ schools that use more energy to the Puget Sound Partnership which isn’t on track to meet any of its goals,” has effectively failed. Considering the facts, it really should be expected that the “architect of environmental policy during that period says he prefers telling happy stories to dealing with the reality of math and science.”
Especially when those happy stories include his own son getting taxpayer subsidies instead of Jay Manning having to dip into his own pocket to help.