Van Jones is back, reconstructed and rehabilitated.
Jones departed from his White House post as “green jobs czar” after publicity about his association with a “9/11 truther” organization, which alleges complicity of the Bush administration with the terrorist attack.
He already was a lightning rod, having characterized President George W. Bush as a “crackhead,” using profanity to describe Republicans and offering gems like blaming “white polluters and white environmentalists” for “steering poison” to minority communities.
But as White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel understands that power brokers should “never waste a crisis,” those on the left grasp that you never waste an asset like a black self-described communist from the 1990s with an Ivy League degree and a best-selling “green jobs” book.
So now Jones has new jobs at Princeton University and Washington, D.C.’s Center for American Progress. And, to seal the public rehabilitation, he will be awarded the NAACP’s Image Award, and has been called by NAACP President Benjamin Jealous a “national treasure.”
But the beauty of the left is that facts will never get in the way of ideology.
The recent scandal associated with the use of research data at the Climate Research Unit in England has brought claims of man-made climate change into serious doubt.
But this hasn’t put a dent in the green jobs movement. President Barack Obama continues to push this idea as central to economic recovery.
The love affair on the left with “green jobs” is, of course, about ideology, which is why facts are irrelevant. It’s another excuse to grow government and bring European socialism to America.
Jones is important because he uses environmentalism as a new platform to welcome poor blacks onto the government plantation.
This is important spin because poor folks do have common sense. In a Zogby poll done after the presidential election, 73 percent of blacks said they were opposed to taxing fossil fuels to promote alternative energy.
The Carter administration invested $2.1 billion in the Great Plains Coal Gasification Plant to convert coal to gas. The result? Zero. Federal government spending since 1961 on “advanced energy technologies and basic energy science research” totals $187 billion with hardly anything to show.
Poor folks don’t need socialism or green jobs. They need green money. They will get more of it being free, going to school, getting married and going to work.
Examiner columnist Star Parker is president of CURE, Coalition for Urban Renewal and Education (www.urbancure.org).