Monday, January 07, 2008

Who Wants Gas Tax

I do. As we face the issue of a how to combat global warming and energy dependency, there are many who say we must “do something” but offer no solutions. Some call for conservation or switching to ethanol or other fuel alternatives, but offer no explanation of how that should be achieved. There are essentially three method of achieving a reduction of greenhouse gases and reduced oil consumption: (1) a Carbon tax, (2) Cap and Trade, (3) Cajole and Control. The third option is a hodge-podge and includes everything from tighter CAFE standards to subsidizing alternative fuels to increase research and development and would be the least efficient and least effective method and the method that would take the longest time to show results. Some of the proposed Cajole and Control solutions may actually be detrimental to the environment and counterproductive to the goal of reducing green house emissions. While Cap and Trade is promising, by far the most efficient method of curtailing greenhouse emission and making alternative to carbon-based fuel affordable is a carbon tax. Below is a list of prominent people, across the political spectrum, who advocate a carbon tax or a gas tax. Some of these people have offered detailed explanations for their positions. In the list below, some of the names or publications have embedded links to articles where their position is stated. For those without embedded links, a quick goggle search combining the person or publication name and the words “Carbon Gas Tax” will result in finding the source materials.

Conservatives, Republicans, or Libertarians who Support a Carbon Tax or Gas Tax
Harvard economist Gregory Mankiw, former chairman of Bush's Council of Economic Advisers.
Economics Columnist Robert Samuelson: (Newsweek. Aug. 20-27, 2007 issue – Greenhouse Simplicities)
Columnist Charles Krauthammer
Columnist David Brooks
Theodore Roosevelt IV, Lehman Bros. executive
Former Bush (43) speechwriter David Frum
Libertarian Magazine Reason
Alan Greenspan, former chair, Federal Reserve
Andrew A Samwick, economist, Dartmouth; former chief economist, Council of Economic Advisors, Bush administration. (Raise the Gasoline Tax? Funny, It doesn’t sound Republican, New York Times, 10/8/06)
Weekly Standard contributing editor Irwin Stelzer
George P, Schultz, U.S. Secretary of Labor under Pres. Nixon (1969-70), Treasury Secretary under Presidents Nixon and Ford (1972-74), and Secretary of State under Pres. Reagan (1982- 89. How to Gain a Climate Consensus, Washington Post, Sept. 5, 2007

Liberals or Democrats Who Support a Carbon Tax or Gas Tax:
George Soros, Responsible Investor
Al Gore,
Andrew Sullivan of The New Republic,
Senator John Kerry
ABC’s Geroge Stephanopoulos advocates “Kind of Energy Tax You See in Europe”
Former Fed Chairman Paul Volcker
Columnist Thomas Friedman
Lester Brown, Earth Policy Institute:
Bill McKibben climate activist and author of The End of Nature
Columnist Nicholas Kristof
Columnist Paul Krugman
New York Observer Columnist Nicholas von Hoffman
John D. Dingell, Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee
Sen. Christopher J. Dodd (D-Conn.) New York Times, July 24, 2007
Leon Panetta, former congressman; former budget director, former chief of staff, Clinton Administration. (Talk of Raising Gas Tax Is Just That,” Washington Post, 10/18/06)

Mainstream Press and Prominent People of Unknown Political Persuasion who Support a Gas Tax:
William Clay Ford Jr., chairman, CEO Ford Motor Co.
Robert H Frank, economist, Cornell University New York Times. (Gas Taxes: Lesser Evil, Greater Good,” New York Times, 10/24/05)
James Hansen, Director, NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies: New York Review of Books, July 13, 2006, The Threat to the Planet
Edward Snyder, dean of the University of Chicago’s Graduate School of Business
James M. Surowiecki. Business and finance journalist, The New Yorker. (“Pump Pressure,” Financial Times, 9/26/05)
Paul Anderson, Chairman and CEO, Duke Energy
Christopher Farrel, Sound Money.
Mike Jackson, CEO, AutoNation Inc (largest national chain of auto dealers).
Kenneth Rogoff, professor economics, Harvard; former chief economist, IMF.
William Clay Ford Jr., chairman, CEO Ford Motor Co.
Robert H Frank, economist, Cornell University
A majority of economists polled by the Wall Street Journal during Feb. 2-7
Los Angeles Times Time to Tax Carbon,
L.A. Times editorial, May 28, 2007
Washington Post (Sorry Record - Waiting for breakthrough technologies is not the way to reduce greenhouse gases, July 11, 2006)
Christian Science Monitor, July 5, 2007.

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1 comment:

  1. I think Congress should do two things. Limit foreign oil imports and institute a carbon tax. Private money would stream into research and development to develop ways to provide the nation's energy needs.

    Congress tinkering with and micromanaging Energy policy does not work and is usually counteproductive. They do not have the expertise to determine what the best solutions are. But there is enough inventive people who do--and they should be unleashed.