DownsizeDC.org
June 3, 2008
URGENT DANGER
By Perry Willis
Quote of the Day: I love to go to Washington, if only to be near my money. ~Bob Hope Subject: Urgent danger from "cap and trade" bill in the Senate The U.S. Senate is debating a bill to impose a "cap and trade" system on the U.S. economy. This bill, S. 2191, the "Climate Security Act" would . . .
  • Place a cap on the level of CO2 emissions
  • Sell permits to businesses that would allow them to emit CO2 in amounts equal to the cap
  • Allow businesses to trade and/or sell these permits to each other -- allegedly creating a market to encourage innovations that would reduce CO2 emissions
  • Use the proceeds from the sale of these permits to create a vast new research bureaucracy designed to help corporations cope with the capAs a practical matter, S. 2191 will . . .
    • Raise your electricity and gasoline bills
    • Provide politicians with new tools to control the economy, hand out favors, and punish enemies
    • Be as ineffective in doing "research" as the Energy Department has been
    • Probably (if the example of Europe is a reliable guide) have little impact on the over-all level of CO2 emissions
  • Even if you accept that human CO2 emissions are causing problematic global warming, a government run "cap and trade" system is not the way to deal with this problem. There is a better way. Here are some points to consider . . .
    • Fossil fuels create massive amounts of air pollution, quite apart from CO2.
    • This pollution causes massive health problems, none of which are reflected in the price of fossil fuels.
    • Fossil fuels enjoy a "free ride" in terms of pollution costs that make it hard for alternative sources of energy to compete.
    • Air pollution is a form of trespass, and a case can certainly be made that dealing with such trespasses is a legitimate function of government.
    The federal government could do this by . . .
    • Taxing fossil fuels
    • Cutting other taxes so that your overall financial burden would remain unchanged
    Your energy costs would rise, but your taxes would fall by an equal amount. Doing this would . . .Eliminate the justification for a "cap and trade" boondoggle
  • Make fossil fuels reflect more of their true costs
  • Provide an incentive for everyone to reduce their use of fossil fuels
  • Make other sources of energy cost competitive
  • Limit the financial impact on you and the economy
  • Help reduce air pollution, including CO2 emissions
We know that most Americans are concerned about pollution and the environment, and for those who feel this way, a carbon tax combined with tax cuts in other areas would be a better approach. But THIS CAMPAIGN is about stopping the "cap and trade" boondoggle, because if you really care about the environment, this proposal has only symbolic value. Please send Congress a message opposing the so-called "Climate Security Act," and all other "cap and trade" schemes. Thank you for being a part of our growing Downsize DC army. Jim Babka President DownsizeDC.org, Inc.
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