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Alabama plays leading role in stirring new viral video

Ryan Houke of Free Market America on Fox Business with John Stossel discussing the impact his short films have had on the national energy debate
Ryan Houke of Free Market America on Fox Business with John Stossel discussing the impact his short films have had on the national energy debate
Based on Paul Harvey’s seminal essay, “If I were the devil,” Free Market America produced one of the most viral conservative videos to hit the web in the last couple of years, titled “If I Wanted America to Fail.”

“If I wanted America to fail; to follow, not lead; to suffer, not prosper; to despair, not dream — I’d start with energy,” the narrator, Ryan Houck, says ominously to start the video.

He then meticulously lays out the environmentalists’ tactics that threaten to cripple America’s economy.

The video now has over 2.7 million plays.

Free Market America is back this week with another stirring video that points out a real-life example of the left’s tactics being put into practice. And what specific example do they give? A liberal northeastern state where energy prices are shooting through the roof? How about a left-leaning western state like California, the home of the green energy movement in America? Nope. The looked no further than right here in Sweet Home Alabama.

“Welcome to Alabama — red state. For months, environmental interests have been waging a campaign here to kill coal,” Houck intones. “Of course, they can’t say that to the conservative voters of Alabama. So instead, environmental front groups are pretending to care about the costs of electricity. It’s a joke. And their money betrays their true intentions. New reports reveal that San Francisco-based environmental interests are funneling millions to the very Alabama front groups now seeking to hijack the state’s Public Service Commission. Millions flowing from California to radical environmental groups in Alabama. All part of a backdoor effort to bring down the free market. In the very heart of a conservative stronghold.”

Houck is alluding to a story Yellowhammer broke in December that revealed documentation showing the San Francisco-based Energy Foundation funneled several million dollars into Alabama earmarked for things like “accelerat[ing] the retirement of coal-fired power plants” and to promote “clean energy issues in Alabama.” Large chunks of money were spent during recent utility hearings at the Alabama Public Service Commission, which the environmental groups viewed as the ideal venue to make their move.

Using data made publicly available by the Energy Foundation, here’s a quick snapshot of how much money environmental groups participating in the Alabama Public Service Commission hearings received, and what the funds were earmarked for:

  • Alabama Arise: $50,000 during the Alabama PSC hearings “to advance clean energy policies in Alabama.”
  • Alabama Environmental Council (AEC): $107,000 “to increase capacity and stakeholder engagement on clean energy issues in Alabama,” including $62,000 during the Alabama PSC hearings.
  • Alabama Rivers Alliance: $40,000 matching grant during the Alabama PSC hearings “to accelerate the retirement of coal-fired power plants in Alabama.”
  • Greater Birmingham Alliance to Stop Air Pollution (GASP): $70,000, including a $20,000 matching grant “to accelerate the retirement of coal-fired power plants in Alabama” and $50,000 “to increase capacity and support for clean air policies in Alabama.”
  • Southern Alliance for Clean Energy (SACE): $810,000 for a wide variety of climate-related issues in the southeast, including $60,000 during the Alabama PSC hearings “to accelerate retirement of coal-fired power plants.”
  • Southern Environmental Law Center (SELC): $1.8 Million, including $60,000 during the PSC hearings “to accelerate retirement of coal-fired power plants in the Southeast.”

Don’t let them get away with it, Alabama,” Houke said defiantly. “Whether they serve in Congress in Washington, work at a federal agency, or sit on the Public Service Commission in Alabama, our public officials were not empowered to negotiate the slow surrender of our freedoms. And the cause of energy independence is the cause of freedom. Let not our children say our cause was quietly forsaken. And those profess to led, let not history say we deserted our principles when they were most in need of a vigorous defense. Let it be said that we saw things clearly even when it was difficult, that we stood up, spoke out, and fought back.”


Follow Cliff on Twitter @Cliff_SimsVideo

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