By John McClaughry
On Dec. 20, the Scott administration announced that it was taking part in a year-long nine-state coalition to “combat greenhouse gas emissions caused by cars and other transportation uses.” Scott’s emissary to the Transportation and Climate Initiative, Peter Walke, said that a carbon tax is an unlikely outcome, and more likely is a cap and trade program for transportation fuels.
Scott’s spokesperson Rebecca Kelley told the media that Scott will not embrace a carbon tax. That statement reminds me of Baghdad Bob, Saddam Hussein’s spokesman who announced that Saddam was routing the invading coalition forces, while US tanks roared by right behind him on a Baghdad street.
“Cap and trade” is a complicated, corruption-prone fig leaf for a carbon tax. The coalition will assign an arbitrary government cap on fossil fuel users. If they use more than the cap, they will have to buy funny money credits that the coalition has bestowed upon — wait for it — its participating governments. The cost of buying the funny money credits is passed on to consumers of the fossil fuel products — in transportation, mostly gasoline and diesel fuel users. They pay the Carbon tax.
Who gets the proceeds? The sellers of the credits, state governments that obtained the funny money credits for free. The governments spend the proceeds on more subsidies for the renewable industrial complex. Thank you, Carbon Tax.
You’re going to hear a lot more about this disguised carbon tax.
John McClaughry is vice president of the Ethan Allen Institute. Reprinted with permission from the Ethan Allen Institute Blog.