Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Compact fluorescent bulbs--the new Snackwells

The story of Snackwell's cookies is interesting (not sure how much of this story is truth and how much myth). Health officials tell us that we have to stop eating too much of something (dietary fat). The food industry responds with a snack that is low in the bad thing but high in something else that isn't good for us (sugar).
The Department of Energy has made switching to compact fluorescent bulbs one of the cornerstones of ways that Americans can be more energy efficient. But of course, skeptics claim that these bulbs are not better for the environment because they contain mercury. Is this another Snackwell's case?

Whether or not it is, there is something weird going on here. In both the dietary and environmental concerns, the issue is really simple--we need to consume less. We need to eat fewer calories and we need to use less electricity.
However, we are sold increased consumption instead. With Snackwell's we can eat just as much as we used to, or even more and still eat less fat. With the compact fluorescent bulbs, we can light our homes all night long and still use less electricity than with regular incandescents. More is less!
Obviously, it's the economy, stupid. The economy can't grow if we don't keep consuming.

I ask your continued participation and confidence in the American economy. Terrorists attacked a symbol of American prosperity. They did not touch its source. America is successful because of the hard work, and creativity, and enterprise of our people. These were the true strengths of our economy before September 11th, and they are our strengths today.

1 comment:

boredoom said...

The mercury issue is a red herring. By switching to CFLs, you save more in mercury emissions from coal-fired power plants than is contained in the bulb. It's a really tiny amount.

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