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SCOTT DREYER: Biden/Harris “Respect Women’s Choices?” Not With Choosing Lightbulbs!

A common theme we hear from President Biden, Vice President Harris, and others is “Democrats respect women and their choices.” It’s an attempt to make political hay from the US Supreme Court’s 2022 decision to end Roe v. Wade and return the issue of abortion to states and their voters.

But, as if a real-life example of George Orwell’s 1984 or Animal Farm, those who talk most about “respecting women to make decisions about their bodies” also tried to force vaccine mandates on women.

Today, August 1, 2023, is another example of women (and men too) losing yet another right to make their own decisions. With only a few exceptions, it’s now illegal to buy or sell incandescent light bulbs.

The incandescent light bulbs we have been using are essentially the same technology that Thomas Edison invented in 1879.

(Side note: Edison’s life and success show the value of homeschooling and individualizing instruction to match students’ interests. As stated here, “Edison’s mother, Nancy, knew her son was fond of chemistry and electronics, so she gave him books to read on the subjects. One book explained how to perform chemistry experiments at home; Thomas did every one in the book.

A biographer of Edison once noted: ‘His mother had accomplished that which all truly great teachers do for their pupils, she brought him to the stage of learning things for himself, learning that which most amused and interested him, and she encouraged him to go on in that path. It was the very best thing she could have done for this singular boy.’

“As Edison himself put it: ‘My Mother was the making of me. She understood me; she let me follow my bent.'”)

Now back to the lightbulb ban, a brief timeline:

October 2007: then-candidate Barack Obama (D) pledged to “immediately sign a law that begins to phase out all incandescent light bulbs.”

December 2007: a Democrat Congress passed a bill to ban incandescent light bulbs, and President George W. Bush (R) signed it into law.

February 2019: In a policy put forward in the final days of the Obama administration, the Department of Energy (DOE) placed further restrictions on the sale of incandescent light bulbs, specifically candle- and globe-shaped bulbs.

September 2019: The Trump DOE overturned the earlier mandates from the Obama administration and allowed consumers to decide what bulbs they wanted to buy.

“Orange Man Bad” has his issues, but at least he trusts us to be adult enough to make our own lightbulb decisions.

2022: The Biden administration said, with few exceptions, the sale of incandescent light bulbs would be illegal after July 31, 2023.

I have nothing against the new light-emitting diode (LED) lights. In fact, my wife and I installed a new one a few days ago.

We are told LEDs use less electricity, last longer, and are cheaper to run that the old-fashioned bulbs. Plus, whereas the older bulbs wasted electricity by generating heat rather than light, they were dangerously hot to the touch and made houses that much hotter during the summer.

The core issue is: since/if LEDs are that much better than traditional bulbs, why not let consumers make their own choices?

Noah Rothman recently discussed this issue for National Review in “The War on Things that Work.”

“The effort to snuff out incandescent lights for good has continued despite the clear preferences of consumers, particularly low-income Americans. In 2018, University of Michigan researchers found that high-efficiency LED light bulbs ‘are more expensive and less available in high-poverty urban areas than in more affluent locations’ and that the cost to upgrade ‘was twice as high in the highest-poverty areas.’

“Not only is the expense a burden; some LED adopters aren’t satisfied with the quality of light the new bulbs produce.

“There is simply no replacement for ‘that ineffable and as yet irreplaceable glow’ produced by incandescent bulbs. But beginning in August, with the exception of industrial applications like heat lamps, the government will formally retire Thomas Edison’s design. You will be able to purchase only LED lights — for your own good, of course.”

Some people do prefer the cozy glow from old-fashioned light bulbs. And since Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a reality plaguing many Americans each winter, will this new mandate add to America’s mental health crises? Plus, even though LEDs can save on the electric bill over time, the purchase price is usually higher than for traditional bulbs. For people on a tight budget, paying more for bulbs is a big burden.

On August 1, 2023 Congressman Ben Cline (R-VA6) tweeted: “The Biden admin is starting to enforce a nationwide lightbulb ban as part of its aggressive anti-energy agenda. I know ‘Bidenomics’ is bankrupting families, but trying to keep them in the dark over the damage they are doing to the country is really sad.”

And the banning of incandescent bulbs isn’t a single, random act. It’s part of a larger, “frog in the kettle” plan to phase out lots of appliances and in the name of “energy efficiency” make them more expensive and less effective. The Epoch Times documents this in “Biden’s Green Rules Mean Appliances Will Soon Cost More and Do Less, Experts Say.”

“Instead of allowing appliance manufacturers to innovate products for features that consumers want, ‘they are literally going to have to redesign products that will look closer to the 1950s than they do to 2020,’ Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers spokesperson Jill Notini said.”

Columnist Jeffrey Tuckers has also written, “Your Water Heater Is Next To Go.”

Irony 1: Leftists like the Obamas and Bidens love scaremongering, “Conservatives want to take us back to the 1950s!” But, it’s their own policies aiming to give us appliances that perform like some throwback from the Eisenhower years instead of the best that modern technology can give us.

Irony 2: The administration that shrieks “a women’s right to choose” is reducing choices about what light bulbs, dishwashers, dryers, etc. you can buy and run in your home. What’s “pro-choice” about that?

Irony 3: Here’s a president dictating what light bulbs you can buy for your home, when he struggles to string words into coherent sentences or climb a flight of stairs, not to mention the mounting evidence he (and his family) have been selling out our country to foreign adversaries for bribes.

Three cheers for technological advancements! No government edicts forced buggy owners to move to automobiles, or VHS owners to buy DVDs or streaming services. Let the consumers be free enough to make their own choices.

In 1827, President John Quincy Adams didn’t need to make a government edict to force Americans to switch from steamboats or mule-drawn canal barges to use trains.

So, what to do? For starters, vote the control freaks out. We can begin here in Virginia, where the General Assembly is up for election this fall. For Roanoke Valley voters, will you vote for Trish White-Boyd, a Democrat? That’s the party that has put Virginians in a “Made in California” straightjacket as to what kind of car you will be able to buy. Or will you vote for Sen. David Suetterlein (R), who thinks you’re adult enough to decide if you want a gas or electric vehicle.

In the 2024 national elections, vote again. Your future hot water heater (and dishwasher, washing machine, dryer, microwave, and overall liberties) depend on it.

–Scott Dreyer

Updated 8-3-23

Scott Dreyer at Bryce Canyon
Scott Dreyer M.A. of Roanoke has been a licensed teacher since 1987 and now leads a team of educators teaching English and ESL to a global audience. Photo at Utah’s iconic Bryce Canyon. Learn more at


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