Free Markets, Free People


Saving the incandescent light bulb

Apparently the latest, agreed upon government “shutdown-averting” budget bill has a rider included in it that would save the incandescent light bulb.

A little reminder of how we got here:

DOE’s light bulb rules — authorized under a 2007 energy law authored signed by President George W. Bush — would start going into effect Jan. 1.

Got it?  Moving on, the rider would essentially prevent DOE from enforcing the standard by defunding that process.  And the GOP has given Democrats some cover by leaving a provision that requires any DOE grant recipients of greater than $1 million to certify they will upgrade the efficiency of their facilities by replacing any lighting to meet or exceed the 2007 energy law’s standards.

The usual suspects are bemoaning this.   Read this and weep because it is people like this who are driving us toward the edge of the liberty and freedom cliff and into the abyss of even more authoritarian and intrusive government:

"In the real world, outside talk radio’s echo chamber, lighting manufacturers such as GE, Philips and Sylvania have tooled up to produce new incandescent light bulbs that look and operate exactly the same as old incandescent bulbs, and give off just as much warm light," said Jim DiPeso, the group’s policy director. "The only difference is they produce less excess heat and are therefore 30 percent more efficient. Same light, lower energy bills. What’s not to like?"

What’s not to like?!  The fact that you’re using the force of government to make decisions that are frankly none of your damn business, sir.  That’s what.  The essence of freedom is choice.  Free choice.  What’s not to like is your abrogation of that freedom Mr. DiPeso.

Oh, and in case you’re wondering what left wing group Mr. DiPeso speaks for it’s the Republicans for Environmental Protection.

Nice, huh?

One other thing … thank goodness for the talk radio echo chamber.  If it takes that to keep up with authoritarians like DiPeso, more power to the genre.

Bottom line, of course, the incandescent light bulb is simply one of many such intrusions that government, sponsored by both parties, continues to make in our daily lives. 

Government is involved in ways and in areas never even imagined by our founders.  It exercises control of our lives that is unprecedented in this country.  Light bulbs for heaven sake.  Freakin’ light bulbs.  If the OWS goons need a real reason to protest, here’s a beauty. 

The old metaphor of the frog in the pot of slowly heating water remains apt.  The banning of light bulbs, something I’m sure any number of big government types will think is trite, is another lesson in what government is not only about, but what it will do if left to its own devices.

And that includes both parties.

~McQ

Twitter: @McQandO

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8 Responses to Saving the incandescent light bulb

  • “…new incandescent light bulbs that look and operate exactly the same as old incandescent bulbs, and give off just as much warm light,” said Jim DiPeso…What’s not to like?”

    Well, I can help with that…

    1. bullshit; the “high-efficiency” incandescents I’ve looked into cost several dollars EACH, and have a life-span that is a FRACTION of your normal “old bulb”

    2. if they are so good, they can compete. What’s not to like about that?

    3. as proven by the HORDING of old bulbs, people are NOT going to be pushed around. Remember Prohibition?

    4. ever hear of the internet? E-Bay? Singapore, Mexico, China…?

    We aren’t gonna take it…never have and never will… (The Who)

    • @Ragspierre Exactly. Might also wonder why “industry” hasn’t been running ads telling us not to worry, cheap incandescents will remain available. They haven’t because they want you to buy 10 dollar light bulbs, of course.

      • @Harun I was an early adopter of the “twisted” bulbs, and I use them where I FLUCKING CHOOSE…

        which does not include where it gets cold, since I find they don’t really like the cold.

  • Onward and upward! Next we must rescind the low-flush (won’t flush) toilet law and we must bring back the cheap old-fashioned top-load washers which were being replaced by low-energy, low-water, high-cost front loaders that break your back as well as your pocketbook.

  • Too late to save the jobs of the people who once produced them in the US. I actually have been replacing all of my bulbs as they burn out with the LED’s. Although they are quite expensive, they produce a good quality light, they use way way less energy, and they are supposed to last eight times longer than common incandescents,

    I have been quite pleased with them.

  • I have no sympathy for those companies. They are poised to reap a payoff by the mandate. And if the mandate doesn’t go through, there’s enough market among the green-minded to make their money back and thensome.

    As for the problem with those bulbs, the ‘evacuate the room for 15 minutes’, warning which is suppose to be a non-issue, is enough for anyone who have children who act like children and pets to say no thank you. In fact the bulbs typically come encased in plastic now because of this and i wonder what kind of hit to their efficiency.

    And the 60 Hz flutter of old florescent lights just about drove me nuts to the point I cringe at the word. I fully expect with cost cutting that will creep into the new bulbs as well.

    • @jpm100 In good old Europe 100W incandescents were banned a while ago. Just a couple of months ago 60W began phase out too. It is possible to pick up bulk packs of 60W bulbs dirt cheap in supermarkets. No one else seems to be buying them but I’ve got enough for WW3 now.

      But what I meant to say is the law of unintended consequences is a bitch. About a month ago there was a mini “scandal” when it was discovered that people were not dutifully taking the mercury-filled CF bulbs to the local hazardous waste disposal as they were supposed to but were tossing them in the normal glass recycling or normal trash. Measurements at recycling centers found elevated levels of mercury being exposed to the workers and an unknown amount washing out into the environment.

      Of course any f***ing 10 year old could have seen this coming and wondered why there are such strict RoHS regulations on any piece of electrical equipment production but people are encouraged to start bringing mercury back into their homes and inevitably having it leak out by mistake into the environment.

      It is specially retarded here in Scandinavia where one generally doesn’t use the lighting for more than 6 months of the year and in the dark winter an incandescent bulb just contributes to the heating of the house.