Free Markets, Free People

Zombie Cap-and-Trade coming to a utility bill near you soon

Senator’s Lindsey Graham, John Kerry and Joe Lieberman have bought the premise that “carbon = bad”.  But being politicians, looking at the economy and understanding the discontent of the voters with both health care reform and cap-and-trade, they’ve decided on a more incremental approach to implementing the latter.

First, they announce that “cap-and-trade as we know it is dead“. Of course cap-and-trade is, at base, a tax on carbon which is now considered a “pollutant” by the anointed. Apparently they believe you’ll believe that since it isn’t a comprehensive, across the board imposition of carbon taxation via the method of cap-and-trade, you’ll buy into the basic lie that this is wholly different.

Then they proffer their plan, which, of course, they claim is nothing like cap-and-trade. Really. It’s not:

Rather than include all major industrial sources of greenhouse gases in one broad economywide cap-and-trade system, the Senate trio will propose different types of limits for different sectors of the economy, beginning with electric utilities and then turning later to manufacturers such as chemical plants and pulp and paper mills.

Said another way, they prefer to tax carbon incrementally and not all at once. And that is the only real difference between Graham/Kerry/Lieberman and cap-and-trade.

The result? Read this finely wrought paragraph carefully to glean the effect:

“The bottom line with utilities is they’ll assume a compliance obligation from day one of the program,” the Senate staffer said, adding that no decisions have been made on how to allocate valuable emission allowances to the power companies except to incorporate an industry recommendation to shuttle revenue toward consumers to help pay for higher energy bills.

You have to love the “nuance” – the intent is to agree with the industry (allow them to raise their rates commensurate with the increase in cost to them) and “shuttle revenue toward consumers to help pay for higher energy bills”. In other words, subsidize consumers to pay for industry’s upgrades to cut carbon dioxide output.

The bottom line is your utility bills are going up from day one of the passage of this bill and the taxpayer – you – will be on the hook to subsidize yourself to pay for the increased cost.

Another in a long line of schemes we simply can’t afford and a convoluted and costly method of implementation.

And eventually, of course, the cost of other products (chemical companies? paper mills?) to include transportation and certainly at some point, gasoline and home heating oil will all be taxed as well.

Transportation fuels can expect a carbon tax that rises based on the compliance costs faced by the other major emitters. Several major oil companies, including Shell Oil Co., ConocoPhillips and BP America, floated the original idea on Capitol Hill, and the Senate trio has evolved their plan by funneling revenue toward transportation projects, reducing fuel consumption and lowering domestic reliance on foreign oil. The Highway Trust Fund is also a potential recipient of the carbon tax revenue, Senate aides said.

A carbon tax, by any other name, is still a carbon tax, isn’t it? And the timing of such legislation is just perfect. If passed anytime soon, the increased costs to industry should hit just about the time they’re beginning to climb out of recession.

As they make their case for the legislation, the three senators plan to tout their effort to incorporate energy and climate proposals into one overall package. And they will highlight the shift on carbon pricing away from cap and trade.

“It will be different from anything that’s been put on the table in the House or Senate to date,” Kerry said last week. “It’ll be comprehensive. And I hope it’ll change the debate.”

But it’s not “different” in the most important aspect – it taxes carbon. The premise is that carbon dioxide is a pollutant. For those who don’t accept the premise as accurate or scientifically valid, this is no different than cap-and-trade. It aims at the same result (taxing carbon) only approaching it in a slightly different and incremental manner.

~McQ

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16 Responses to Zombie Cap-and-Trade coming to a utility bill near you soon

  • I don’t think these people have a clue what is going on with the average citizen. We have 10% unemployment nationally right now, next year intrest rates are expected to begin rising again. This will cause more employmnet losses and mortgage failures. And they want to put a new tax on us? Why aren’t they spending this amount of time and energy creating jobs?  A carbon tax is a tax on everything. If it is aplied only to Power companies alone, it is applied to everything because we use electricity for everything. From making shoes to building homes to lighting groceries stores, everything we do uses electricity and all of these businesses pass the increases on to us. I had no idea the Democrats were so out of touch with people, I will never vote Democrat again. What was I thinking? Never again.

  • C’mon, its not as if every single economic activity uses electricity in some form or another?

    • and it’s not like animals tend to produce carbon dioxide as a by product of uh….living……
       
       
      “Let me zee, zo, you haf sree cows, fife dogs, a vife, 2 childrens, und a kat – ze tax vor ze carbon dioxide fur zis year vill be…….”
       
       

  • And who here actually thinks that the Highway Trust Fund will actually be the recipient of all this new tax money?  After we finish getting jobbed by the RINO’s in the Senate all that tax money will go into the general budget and they’ll probably double-count the increased revenues or “write IOU’s” to the Trust Fund like they do with Social Security.

    • The Highway Trust Fund is just like that other trust fund, Social Security; filled with IOU’s.
      The state gas tax funds have been, with only a few exceptions, fed into their respective general fund coffers for YEARS.

  • Rather than include all major industrial sources of greenhouse gases in one broad economywide cap-and-trade system, the Senate trio will propose different types of limits for different sectors of the economy, beginning with electric utilities and then turning later to manufacturers such as chemical plants and pulp and paper mills.

    Good grief!  Does this not just SCREAM that they’ll be putting themselves into an even greater position to reward and punish various companies and entire sectors of the economy based purely on political calculation???  Can you not already see the armies of lawyers and lobbyists who will be heading for Capitol Hill with bags of cash campaign donations to ensure that their particular industry / plant gets favorable emissions caps???  We already got a taste of this when the feds took over GM: members of Congress didn’t waste a moment making it quite clear that plants in THEIR districts had better not be closed, and cost-cutting be damned!

    I can only pray that the good people of So. Carolina throw that idiot Graham out on his ear at the earliest opportunity, preferably after applying a liberal coating of tar and feathers.  Hell, after Brown’s win, there’s even hope that those fools in Taxachusetts might finally rid us of Jean-Francois.

    The Highway Trust Fund is also a potential recipient of the carbon tax revenue, Senate aides said.

    Quite aside from the fact that the Highway fund is about as likely to be a recipient of carbon tax revenue as I am to be a recipient of sexual favors from Kim Kardashian, this makes no logical sense: the whole idea of the carbon tax is to reduce emissions, no?  And you reduce emissions by making it so expensive to drive a car that people drastically cut back in favor of mass trans, right?  So, it follows that if this insane law ever comes to pass, the highway fund will need LESS money, not more.

    Have we ever – EVER – been saddled with a more corrupt, power-hungry, and plain ol’ STUPID Congress???

    • Say hello to Kim for me

    • Makes ya wonder if Francois’s Heinz-Kerry pickle & ketchup plants will be left alone don’t it?  Don’t pickles cause greenhouse gases in some people?

  • NO NEW TAXES

  • Such lunacy,  There are some legitimate reasons that you might want to cut down on fossil fuel consumption.  But in such a case a direct tax on the fuel is much more efficient.  And in a recession you would have to offset that with tax cuts in other areas.
     
    Why are there so many people determined to drive the whole damn train into the ditch?

    • It’s all a “God complex’ … they want to act like gods  …  and save mankind

      “My Lord, make this a peaceful land, and protect me and my children from worshiping idols.” (Qur’an 14:35)
      And for non-believers, do we really need to make anybody a god, when no one can replace Elvis.

    • There are some legitimate reasons that you might want to cut down on fossil fuel consumption

      Such as? (I’d agree that WASTE is a legitimate reason).
      How would taxes, as opposed to market factors, be the way to do it?

      • for the sake of generally reducing pollution and for reducing dependence on nations who pose problems for us.
        And a direct tax is simply the most efficient method.  But, as I said, only if you counter it by lowering other taxes, otherwise you have given your commerce a tremendous disadvantage in the marketplace.

  • I think lawyers and politicians (a subspecies of lawyer usually) often think money can be made just through lawsuits and legal actions, etc. They don’t get that at the base there has to be real activity to support their fun.

  • When can we start throwing these jokers in jail?