Should Conservative Groups Be Shut Down for Questioning Environmentalism?

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In Heritage Work

In a recent op-ed for EcoWatch, activist Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. called for all companies and organizations, including The Heritage Foundation, that don’t support a radical environmental agenda to be given a corporate “death penalty.”

Here’s what he argues:

I do, however, believe that corporations which deliberately, purposefully, maliciously and systematically sponsor climate lies should be given the death penalty. This can be accomplished through an existing legal proceeding known as “charter revocation.” State Attorneys General can invoke this remedy whenever corporations put their profit-making before the “public welfare.” . . .

Any state attorney general with the will, resolve and viscera to stand to up to the dangerous and duplicitous corporate propagandists, has authority to annul the charters of each of these mercenary merchants of deceit.

You know we’re making a difference when liberals question our motives, accuse us of being “mercenary merchants of deceit,” and call on the government to shutter us.

At Heritage, we’re in nobody’s pocket. Instead, we stand on principle, advancing policies based on the principles of free enterprise, limited government, individual freedom, traditional American values, and a strong national defense. Moreover, with 600,000 members, we’re the most broadly supported policy organization in America–and just 5 percent of our revenue comes from corporate donors.

Do you agree with Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.? Should Heritage and other groups be disbanded for supporting conservative policy solutions?

Bobby Jindal Calls for a New Energy Policy to Create Jobs and Grow the Economy

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In Heritage Impact

Gov. Bobby Jindal speaks at Heritage about his new energy policy. Photo: Steven Purcell

Gov. Bobby Jindal speaks at Heritage about his new energy policy. Photo: Steven Purcell

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal unveiled a new energy platform for America in a speech today at The Heritage Foundation.

Noting that the United States has the largest natural energy resources in the world, even larger than those in Russia and Saudi Arabia, Jindal argued for expanded energy production to create jobs and strengthen the economy.

The oil and gas industry employs millions of Americans, and “millions of more jobs could be created if the federal government simply stays out of the way,” Jindal said. Continue Reading »

The EPA Tried to Redefine H2O. Heritage Explained Why Congress Should Say ‘No’

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In Heritage Work

EPA Clean Water Act opposition

Wisconsin farmers fight against the Environmental Protection Agency’s ‘Waters of the U.S.’ proposed rule. (Photo: American Farm Bureau Federation via Facebook)

Earlier this year, the EPA announced that it would unilaterally expand its authority under the Clean Water Act, vastly extending the scope of regulated waters. Fortunately, the House of Representatives has now passed legislation to stop the EPA, and The Heritage Foundation helped make this victory happen.

The EPA’s proposal would give the agency unprecedented power in regulating water on private property. Ranchers, farmers, and private property owners across the nation were alarmed to hear that everything from navigable rivers down to man-made ditches and dry creek beds would now be subject to EPA scrutiny under the CWA.

Heritage Foundation expert Daren Bakst has taken the lead in educating Congress and the public about the negative effects of the EPA’s broad redefinition of its authority. Over the past several months, he has written numerous issue briefs, hosted discussion panels, and presented policy solutions to lawmakers. He explained the core of the problem in a report this summer:

This water (and land) grab is an attack on property rights. Private property owners would need to obtain permits from the federal government far more often than they already do now when seeking to use and enjoy their land. There has been widespread opposition to the rule from everyone from farmers to counties, which are concerned that the rule will impose costly new requirements on them.

The House of Representatives agreed. The new bill, if adopted by the Senate and signed into law, will prohibit the EPA from moving forward with its power grab and ensure that private property owners are not subject to burdensome government over-regulation. Do you think the House was right to limit the EPA’s powers?

Here’s the One Thing That Will Lower Gas Prices, Create Jobs, and Boost the Economy

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In Heritage Work

Heritage Foundation expert Nicolas Loris explains how opening energy markets “would create more opportunities for Americans, promote economic prosperity at home and abroad, and improve political situations around the world.”

He specifically looks at natural resources including coal, natural gas, and oil.

He says:

Expanding market opportunities for energy exports will not just benefit energy companies. By opening the door to establishing more efficient global oil markets, all Americans will reap the benefits of lower prices, more jobs, and a stronger economy. Freely trading energy will not only increase prosperity around the world, but also bolster U.S. national security by diversifying supplies in the global market.

He suggests three policy solutions:

  1. Lift natural gas export barriers.
  2. Remove the crude oil export ban. 
  3. Prevent threats to coal exports

Read the Backgrounder and tell us: Do you think a free-market energy policy will benefit the United States economy?

Heritage Work Leads to Two Wins on Energy Policy

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In Heritage Impact

Nicolas Loris

Nicolas Loris

The House of Representatives rejected a big-government energy bill this week and approved an important reform to the Department of Energy’s national laboratories. Both conservative victories were inspired by Heritage Foundation research.

Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA) had proposed legislation to “create a number of taxpayer-supported government programs to extract and recycle domestic rare earth minerals,” Heritage expert Nicolas Loris explains. A better solution than subsidies, Loris argues, would be to limit government restrictions on production and trade.

Thanks in part to Loris’ work to draw public attention to this proposal, and a key-vote against the bill by Heritage Action for America, Swalwell’s bill failed in the House.

Meanwhile, House lawmakers approved a bill from Rep. Randy Hultgren (R-IL) that would pilot important reforms to the DOE’s national laboratories. Heritage experts have long been urging Congress to make these sorts of reforms (link in PDF) to enable the private sector to take advantage of basic research at these labs.

This is another example of how Heritage uses policy research and communications, as well as our partnership with the grassroots activists at Heritage Action, to win conservative victories.

Heritage Led the Charge that Stopped EPA Overreach

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In Heritage Impact

This is a big win for conservatives.

Earlier this month, the Environmental Protection Agency tried to quietly put in place a regulation allowing the agency to garnish workers’ wages without first obtaining a court order. This was bad enough. But the EPA also tried to enact this rule without first going through the usual comment and review procedures.

Yesterday, the EPA withdrew the rule. And The Heritage Foundation played a big role in this victory.

Here’s how it happened, as Heritage President Jim DeMint explained in an e-mail to supporters: Continue Reading »

A Firsthand Account of What’s Going on at the Border with Mexico

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In Heritage Work

The federal government protects the Southern Yellow Bat at the border with Mexico. (Photo: Wikimedia)

Keeping the border secure is essential to protecting America and its citizens. So why is it so difficult?

The Heritage Foundation’s Genevieve Wood recent visited to McAllen, Texas, on the border with Mexico, to witness the problems first hand.

One problem is that the federal government is not doing enough to halt the recent influx of illegal immigrants, according to border control officers. Texas has decided to take matters into its own hands by allotting more resources to catch the illegal crossers.

But the problems don’t stop there.

Many border areas in South Texas are part of national wildlife refuge areas, and many illegal immigrants cross the border there. These areas — meant to protect small mammals like bats and even beetles “essential for plant pollination” – severely limit border agents’ ability to even patrol the area for human traffickers and drug smugglers.

In fact, because the land spanning the Rio Grande is protected, border patrol cars are not allowed to leave designated dirt roads. Instead, agents are told to go after the drug smugglers on foot or to follow the road to try and catch up.

Do you think the federal government should protect animals like the Yellow Southern Bat instead of protecting the border?

Heritage’s Nick Loris Helps Kick Off New NBC Series

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In Heritage Impact

Earlier this month, NBC’s “Meet the Press” launched #MakeTheCase, a new web series featuring debates on key policy issues. So where do they turn to get the series off to a strong start? The Heritage Foundation.

The first video in the series features Heritage’s Nick Loris going head-to-head against the Sierra Club’s Michael Brune on the Keystone XL pipeline.

Watch the video above and then tell us in the comments, do you think we should build the Keystone XL pipeline?

Why America Should Lift the Ban on Crude Oil Exports

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In Heritage Work

American oil production has increased dramatically in recent years, yet the federal government maintains a ban on the export of crude oil. Arguing that this policy is economically harmful, Heritage’s Nicolas Loris urges Congress to lift the export ban.

Expanding market opportunities will not just benefit oil companies. By opening the door to establish more efficient global oil markets, all Americans will reap the benefits of lower prices and a stronger economy. Free trade is one of the principal drivers of improving standards of living both in the United States and abroad, and removing unnecessary restrictions on oil exports will help power that growth.

Do you think we should expand the market for American oil?

How Uncle Sam Is Limiting Domestic Energy Production

58 comments

In Heritage Work

American oil production has skyrocketed over the past seven years, but production could be even higher, according to a new report by Heritage Foundation expert Nicolas Loris. Production has actually fallen on federal lands, where red tape limits exploration and drilling.

Loris recommends streamlining environmental reviews and allowing states to make more decisions about energy development.

Do you think more land should be opened to oil exploration?

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