Call it “Joe Biden’s Australia Plan.” It’s the new scheme the former vice president is hatching to invest what the Associated Press calls “$5 trillion-plus” in an effort to lead America to net-zero emissions of carbon “pollution” — by 2050. “Science tells us that how we act or fail to act in the next 12 years will determine the very livability of our planet,” Mr. Biden bruits.
The reason we call it Mr. Biden’s “Australia Plan” is owing to the last place a center-left aspirant to national leadership tried to sweet-talk voters into sinking their fortunes into climate change. Bill Shorten, of Australia’s Labor Party, was tipped to win the election. When the voters heard about his focus on the climate, though, they did a 180 and re-elected the conservative Scott Morrison.
We wrote about the upset in an editorial called “‘Bombshell’ News for Joe Biden From Australia.” Mr. Biden’s failure to adjust his program accordingly may be owing to the possibility, however remote, that the ex-veep isn’t a regular reader of the Sun. More’s the pity. Mr. Biden seems wedded to the idea that what’s keeping the voters up at night is more climate change than the fear of taxes or joblessness.
The Associated Press manages to extract from us a bit of sympathy for the hapless Mr. Biden, in that, as the AP notes, he is “offering his climate plan as some of his rivals suggest the 76-year-old former vice president is not bold enough.” He tracks some ideas of the Green New Deal pushed by Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez and “many Democrats in Washington” but, reckons the AP, “isn’t as aggressive.”
What that means is that Mr. Biden’s about on par with Beto O’Rourke, but is lagging, say, Governor Jay Inslee of Washington, who wants $3 trillion in federal taxpayer spending all in one decade. In other words, Mr. Biden is nothing to write home about. Then again, on what else is he supposed to run when the Trump-era economy is running at full employment with what the Democrats would call modest inflation?