|Passenger side air conditioning in 1953 for my aunt and uncle|
© 2015 Michael Swickard, Ph.D. For most of our country's history what we wanted was fine if we worked for it and did not cheat anyone. But now we are talking about changing the debate to: you should only have what you absolutely need, not that other stuff you want.
Take money. the Socialists among us talk constantly about the fact that people don't need as much money as they have. This is especially so for those who have money left over at the end of the month. Shouting about income inequality there is a move to take from the rich and give to the poor until everyone, regardless of how hard they work, has the same as everyone else.
But there is something worse. Money is one thing, air conditioning is another. A headline caught my attention: New York University Professor Wants Government To Stop Us From Using Air-Conditioning. Gosh! And the professor thinks he has a good reason to get the government to take all of our A/C units away from us.
Sociology professor Eric Klinenberg wrote an op-ed in Time magazine entitled, Air-Conditioning Will Be The End Of Us. He is concerned American's power use for air-conditioning will increase the effect of Global Warming and of course Global Warming is just about to extinguish the human race.
He is not alone. Several people I have spoken with agree A/C is not needed by most people, it is only wanted. Count me as wanting A/C in the New Mexico summers. Do I need it? No, but this is America where I should be able to live as I desire, not as the Socialists desire me to live.
I have lived in the heat quite a bit of my life, some of the time with just shade and cool water as my only relief from hot days. During the summers of my youth I lived on my grandfather's ranch and there was no A/C. He said, "If you work in the sunlight, the shade will be cool enough."
Back then all of our vehicles had the open window air-conditioning: roll two windows down and drive. When I came to college in 1968 I did not have a car so I walked to campus, about a mile each way. I did so in the heat, cold and gloom of night. There wasn't rain and snow because this was New Mexico.
Even when I got my first car all it had was windows to lower the temperature. The truth is that most of us did not have what is now considered a necessity, air-conditioning. I have lived in houses without A/C and we just sweltered in the heat but survived.
So the Socialists among us are right, A/C use in this nation is because we Americans want it. Socialists think they can end this danger to the planet. The problem will be when the government decides that not enough of us are voluntarily casting off this want and they mandate the end of citizen owned air-conditioning. How will Americans take losing something they really want?
I owned a weekly newspaper when President Jimmy Carter was trying to push Americans to be hotter in the Summer, colder in the Winter. My shop was visited by an inspector who marveled that it was 60 degrees in the building so we were good Carter people.
Actually I didn't own the building and it had no insulation so 60 was as warm as I could get it. Then the inspector looked for our piece of paper that was supposed to be on the wall saying we supported people being cold in the Winter.
I deadpanned, "We burnt it." He was aghast and started filling out a replacement certificate. When he handed it to me, I said to my print shop foreman, "Dame fuego" - give me fire - so Pete threw me his lighter. I lit the certificate as the government worker sputtered inarticulately. He never came back.
When the government takes all of our A/C units away from us, I wonder if we sheep will continue to vote as we have in the past. Or will there be a tidal wave of sweat sending different leaders into office? Yep.