One of the world’s most outspoken skeptics about climate change has fanned some flames in a new editorial. Steven Milloy, who is the founder and publisher of JunkScience.com, is calling for conservatives to “get a grip on the EPA” in his most recent column. The opinion piece appears on the conservative website HumanEvents.com.

In his editorial, Milloy argues that Republicans are down to their last line of defense when it comes to a cap-and-trade “scheme.” Milloy says Republicans can use their power in the House to squelch any hopes the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has of regulating carbon emissions on Jan. 2, 2011. “From denying the EPA funding for its programs, particularly the agency’s air and enforcement offices, to oversight investigations of the White House and the EPA, the House can throw much-needed monkey wrenches into the Obama administration’s jihad against GHG (greenhouse gasses) emissions and our economy.”

Beginning to speculate on the motives behind Milloy’s word choice is a dangerous practice that I will not undertake. I don’t know the man. I am not even that familiar with his past writings, but I do get a clear message from his piece: Republicans are afraid of the EPA.

To be fair, Milloy argues that cap-and-trade will, “kill jobs and raise prices of energy and thus the costs for all goods and services.” Whether this is true or not, this argument is one Democrats have failed to counter as seen in the results of the last midterm election. But Milloy’s logic is harder to follow as he continues.

Milloy suggests that the Obama administration’s plans for regulating greenhouse gases are “flagrantly illegal,” yet just a few paragraphs down he acknowledges that the EPA does have the right to regulate greenhouse gasses thanks to Massachusetts vs. EPA, a Supreme Court ruling made a few years ago. “Current federal law and existing Supreme Court decisions make it difficult to challenge the EPA successfully,” Milloy points out.

Milloy also writes that Obama has been the architect of the cap-and-trade policy. “The Obama administration originally designed the scheme as a regulatory sword of Damocles to pressure Congress and industry into agreeing on a cap-and-trade framework.” Yet, Milloy fails to mention that Republicans used to champion cap-and-trade as a market-based solution, and that just a few short years ago, Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.), John Warner (R-Va.), Richard Lugar (R-Ind.), Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) and Mel Martinez (R-Fla.) supported a cap-and-trade concept that was called the strongest climate bill ever at the time.

In the senators' defense, that was a long time ago. It was way back in 2008. In the two years since, Milloy articulates that this “scheme” is now the administration’s idea. But back in 2008, he wasn’t calling McCain, Lugar, Warner or Corker’s efforts to regulate emissions a jihad against pollution, or even a crusade for a market-based solution for pollution. Nope, he didn’t write that.

Something has changed.

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