Did You Know There’s Totally A Cheap, Proven Fix For ‘Climate Change’?

Can you guess what it is?

No, it’s not all members of the Cult of Climastrology giving up their own use of fossil fuels and going carbon neutral.

No, it’s not doing actual science instead of relying on doomsaying and computer models to determine how much of the current warm period is caused by nature vs mankind.

Hyper-Warmist John D. Sutter will use his platform at CNN to tell us, which will put out carbon pollution through the use of evil electricity

There’s a cheap, proven fix to the world’s biggest problem

Yoram Bauman learned about the idea that would change his life, and the course of the world, as a nerdy undergraduate at Reed College.

The economics professor’s pitch was so simple he couldn’t shake it.

We should make bad stuff more expensive.

And, by doing that, make good stuff cheaper.

“I remember thinking that it was such an intellectually beautiful idea,” he told me.

It is beautiful. And, as it turns out, this old theory, which dates back at least to the 1920s and an economist named Arthur Pigou, is essential to fixing one of the world’s biggest problems.

What could it be?

Washington’s Initiative-732 would make a bad thing — pollution — more expensive by putting a tax on each ton of carbon dioxide created by cars, power plants and the like.

More importantly, doing so would throw economic muscle behind clean energy, shorter commutes, cleaner air and smarter cities. It would use the market, not regulations, to choose winners and losers in the clean tech race. It would help Washington state, in the apt words of the initiative’s promoters, fulfill its moral responsibility to leave a livable planet for future generations. And it plans do so without wrecking the economy or growing government.

Why, yes, a carbon tax! Of course! It’s so simple! The Government applying force of law to force citizens to Do Something. But, it’s totally innocuous, you know

That’s because Bauman’s carbon-tax proposal aims to be “revenue neutral,” meaning all of the money the state collects from the tax on carbon will be returned to the people and businesses as tax breaks. So this shouldn’t be seen as an additional tax. It’s a different tax — a pollution tax.

If you believe that, you probably reply to emails saying they need to shelter some money, and if you’ll send them your social security number they share it with you, the modern day equivalent of jumping off the Brooklyn Bridge.

Notice throughout the article the notion that costs will go up quite a bit, but, hey, the government will supposedly refund money to consumers to make up for some of the cost increases. In reality, this doesn’t happen. In reality, the cost of energy becomes difficult to afford, hurting the very lower and middle class people it proports to defend. In reality, businesses up and leave, as well as reduce their workforce.

Notice from the first excerpt about “shorter travel”. One of the things the more hardcore Warmists have wanted was to restrict travel for citizens, something the wider parent Progressive movement has wanted. How better to control citizens than find ways to keep them in small areas? Which is what this is all about. Control.

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9 Responses to “Did You Know There’s Totally A Cheap, Proven Fix For ‘Climate Change’?”

  1. Dana says:

    Our humble host quoted:

    doing so would throw economic muscle behind clean energy, shorter commutes, cleaner air and smarter cities.

    Translation: denser urbanization.

    When you read things like “shorter commutes,” you are reading the words of people who dwell in urban areas, by choice, and believe that everyone should live in urban areas. The suburbs, they are just so gauche, and the rural areas, why they’re nothing but the homes for the unedumacated rubes and bitter clingers to guns and religion.

    The urban hipsters are all about subways — forget the scandals over the “Big Dig” in Boston! — and public transportation, because that’s what they find convenient and that’s what they use, and they think that’s what everybody should use. many of them look longingly at the public transportation system in European countries and think, “That’s what we need!”

    Trouble is, it just doesn’t mesh with the American culture, as developed by American geography. Part of our cultural heritage is the dream of our wide open spaces, of wanting a home in the countryside with some land and privacy. We don’t have the public transportation system of Europe because it doesn’t meet our needs.

    I have long believed that it is dense urbanization which has led to some of our other cultural problems. We have just as many guns here in rural Carbon County as 70 miles down the road in foul, fetid, fuming, foggy, filthy Philadelphia, but a murder rate that’s negligible. We have maybe two killings a decade here. Our culture simply does not think it’s somehow necessary or wise to shoot other people.

    And I think a lot of that has to do with simply living further apart from our neighbors. We’re not (usually) packed up right across the hall or in the same building with people who’ve pissed us off, and we don’t have fights over parking spaces or brushing up too closely with other people on the street. It’s not like we don’t have problems: average income tends to be lower in small towns and rural areas, but housing also costs a whole lot less. There are too many people using illegal drugs around here — and one person is too many — but if someone is playing the stereo way too loudly, only a couple of neighbors can really hear it, not three whole apartment buildings.

    Urbanization has been a creeping cancer on human society. It provides greater economic opportunities, but it has also led to a degraded society.

  2. Jeffery says:

    A carbon tax is meant to account for the negative externalities associated with the market transactions involving fossil fuels. At present there is no accounting for the broad societal damages caused by the use of fossil fuels. Such a tax necessarily harms the fossil fuels industry, hence their understandable opposition. Hence their support of the Denialism movement. But pollution is damaging and someone needs to take responsibility.

    To protect its citizens, a government has the right, if not the obligation to limit pollution generated from private parties. A government can ban pollution outright, but most prefer a market based approach with incremental taxes/fees/penalties to change the behaviors as this approach is less disruptive. For example, cigarettes kill 400,000 Americans each year, and although, arguably we should have banned them outright, we’ve tried to reduce the negative impacts with taxation and education.

    If your objection is a cult-like opposition to all taxation, there is little support for you.

    If you think that people, and especially corporations, should be able to do whatever they want whenever they want, there is little support for you.

    Pollution causes damage and someone needs to pay for those damages. A tax at the source is one reasonable way to reduce and pay for damages.

    How would you reduce fossil fuel pollution and/or the damages?

  3. Dana says:

    Jeffrey wrote:

    Such a tax necessarily harms the fossil fuels industry, hence their understandable opposition.

    Does it? The energy industries so taxed simply pass those taxes on to the consumer, and the consumers pay the taxes.

    Heck, you can even buy a Nissan Leaf, total electric plug-in car, and you’ll wind up paying the increased taxes through higher electricity rates.

  4. Jl says:

    Again, starts from the false premise that CO2 is “bad” for life on earth. Plus, still waiting to hear what negative climate event has been solely cause by the additional CO2 added to the atmosphere in the last 70 years or so. All we have now is speculation about the future and failed predictions from the past.

  5. Jeffery says:

    Dana typed, regarding a carbon tax harming the fossil fuels industry:

    Does it? The energy industries so taxed simply pass those taxes on to the consumer, and the consumers pay the taxes.

    Exactly. And the energy industries so taxed will sell less of their product. The primary goal of this type of tax is to reduce demand. This also makes renewable energy sources (which pollute much less than fossil fuels) relatively cheaper. So, this type of tax would make the market more efficient (in the econ sense), more fair, and reduce demand for a polluting product.

  6. Jeffery says:

    Global warming is bad for human societies. Ask the folks in Houston.

  7. Dana says:

    Jeffrey has forgotten his Econ 101 classes:

    Does it? The energy industries so taxed simply pass those taxes on to the consumer, and the consumers pay the taxes.

    Exactly. And the energy industries so taxed will sell less of their product. The primary goal of this type of tax is to reduce demand.

    This assumes that the demand for energy is elastic, but it really isn’t. People will still need to get to and from work, and people will still need to heat their homes in the winter. If the price for a fairly inelastic demand product increases, then the goods not sold will be those things which are more optional than necessary.

    This also makes renewable energy sources (which pollute much less than fossil fuels) relatively cheaper.

    “Relatively cheaper?” In plain English, that means that they still cost a lot more, but the difference between them and fossil fuel costs will narrow. Thus, consumers will still have to pay more for energy, still have to live less well than they do now. Perhaps this is of little consequence to a millionaire pharmaceutical producer, but to working-class Americans, it really does make a difference.

  8. Liam Thomas says:

    I suppose global warming could be bad for Houston if it was actually causing all this flooding but alas we find:

    HOUSTON (AP) — The flooding, property damage and loss of life as torrential rains this week hit the Houston area should be no surprise.

    “It happens fairly frequently,” said Sam Brody, director of Texas A&M University’s Center for Beaches and Shores. “Houston is the No. 1 city in America to be injured and die in a flood.”

    The Harris County Flood Control District, the agency working in recent years with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on hundreds of millions of dollars in projects to ease the flooding impact, has been around since 1937, itself a product of catastrophic flooding two years earlier.

    “Houston is so vulnerable,” Brody, who’s been studying the issue for 15 years, said Wednesday. “There’s very little topography. They’ve added hundreds of miles of pavement and can’t keep up with all the positive initiatives. … So we get these floods.”

  9. Jeffery says:

    that means that they still cost a lot more, but the difference between them and fossil fuel costs will narrow.

    Exactly.

    This assumes that the demand for energy is elastic, but it really isn’t.

    When a form of energy becomes more expensive (priced at its true costs) to the end consumer, the consumer can decide whether or not to use less of that form. Home insulation, electric cars, more fuel efficient cars, solar panels, etc.

    I pursue a simple life out of personal choice, not because of my financial situation.

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