Thomas Friedman: “You know how you beat Putin? Tax Americans, that’s how.”
Ah the left, you can count on them to come up with some way to get into your wallet in answer to any crisis. Thomas Friedman, the man who admires China’s abilty to control almost all aspects of its citizens life, has a great solution to the recent aggression by Russia’s President Vladimir Putin. Tax Americans:
I don’t want to go to war with Putin, but it is time we expose his real weakness and our real strength. That, though, requires a long-term strategy — not just fulminating on “Meet the Press.” It requires going after the twin pillars of his regime: oil and gas. Just as the oil glut of the 1980s, partly engineered by the Saudis, brought down global oil prices to a level that helped collapse Soviet Communism, we could do the same today to Putinism by putting the right long-term policies in place. That is by investing in the facilities to liquefy and export our natural gas bounty (provided it is extracted at the highest environmental standards) and making Europe, which gets 30 percent of its gas from Russia, more dependent on us instead. I’d also raise our gasoline tax, put in place a carbon tax and a national renewable energy portfolio standard — all of which would also help lower the global oil price (and make us stronger, with cleaner air, less oil dependence and more innovation).
Of course one of the real problems to doing what Friedman wants, i.e. exploiting our “natural gas bounty” is found in the parenthetic statement right after that. Government and environmentalists stand in the way because “the highest environmental standards” is a moveable goal post that is pushed further and further out each time industry approaches it. And, of course, Friedman apparently isn’t cognizant of the fact that the “standards” are one of the major cost factors in keeping prices up.
Naturally Friedman also wants the other lefty dream. The Crimea is as good of an excuse as any. The Global Warming scam has been exposed. The chances of getting that carbon tax based in that nonsense seem ever more remote. But wait, we now have the Crimea! Perfect. Lets tax ourselves to do in Putin. Friedman knows that whatever the excuse, taxes are rarely dropped after they’re once implemented. So, with a “whatever it takes” philosophy guiding this, Friedman has his newest and latest excuse to raise taxes. And note – it’s a long term strategy (which apparently assumes that Russia won’t make adjustments to the threat to its business) which means that these aren’t temporary taxes we’re talking about. No. Not by any stretch.
Oh, and for a guy who is so in love with China, I wonder if he has any idea where Russian oil and gas would go if the EU decided to buy from us?
Yeah, probably not.