Biden’s Covid-19 mandate was a surprising u-turn. In a single set of measures, he:
- ordered millions of federal government employees to get vaccinated or find another job
- ordered all federal contractors to follow suit
- issued the same ultimate to over 17 million healthcare workers at hospitals that participate in Medicare and Medicaid
- forced companies with 100 or more employees to vaccinate their workers or conduct expensive testing weekly, a requirement expected to impact more than 80 million people.
- required nearly 300,000 educators under the federal government’s Head Start Program also be vaccinated,
- expanded free testing, including $2 billion to distribute rapid tests in community health centers, food banks, and schools.
- doubled the fines against those who refuse to wear a mask when traveling
Had he so desired, Biden could as easily have dramatically reduce climate change with the similar set of measures. Simply by reducing the workweek to four days:
- for all federal employees;
- all federal contractors;
- all employees of any private institution, or state or local government that receives any federal funds;
- all companies with more than 100 employees; and,
- imposing steep fines per infraction on any of the above that failed to comply
And, perhaps, one additional measure:
- impose 200% tariff on imports from any country with a workweek longer than 32 hours.
This likely would reduce the U.S. carbon footprint well below its current impact.
The difference, of course, is that the Covid-19 vaccination is all about restarting surplus accumulation, while ending climate change threatens accumulation.