Green Scissors 2011: A Misguided Proposal for Budget and Environmental Reform

Matthew Stepp August 26, 2011
August 26, 2011

The “Green Scissors 2011” report offers a unique opportunity to break through the budget gridlock in a way that cut wasteful programs while reinvesting in vital areas for economic and environmental progress. Unfortunately, it failed to meet this potential. Instead of taking a balanced approach, the report jumped on the spending cut bandwagon and focused solely on slashing or eliminating public programs, including vital investments like ARPA-E, which has become one of the federal government’s single most important agencies for advancing a sustainable economic future. In order to justify these cuts, the report peddled false myths about the nature of public investment and innovation policy, even while pushing an ideologically-driven agenda for picking energy technology winners and losers. In this way, despite some of its strengths, the report offers a misguided strategy for confronting the nation’s budgetary and environmental challenges.