The commissioners of the European Union endlessly preach about the need for carbon taxes and costly regulations that will reduce the quality of life for regular people. But those same commissioners get driven around in low-mileage vehicles. Fortunately, they are getting attacked for this hypocritical attitude.
Sadly, the embarrassment will have little impact. American politicians — including President Bush — want to force Americans into smaller (and more dangerous) cars, yet periodic efforts to require them to live by the same rules have proved fruitless.
The EU Observer reports on the controversy in Brussels:
EU commissioners are finding themselves under scrutiny to see if they are putting into practice the green values that Brussels is increasingly preaching, with most of the 120-strong fleet of officials cars comprising gas-guzzling, C02-emitting giants.
…[T]he vast majority of the 27 commissioners use the standard-issue vehicles such as Audis or Mercedes — high on security features but rather lower on environment friendliness — to be ferried here and there across Brussels; sometimes even the few hundred metres between commission buildings.
...A commission spokesperson said, "It's an individual decision for commissioners what their service car should be but as a general rule, the commissioners choose cars that are functional and safe for what they are doing."