The Washington Times – By Stephen Moore – Sunday, February 12, 2017
I have nothing but respect for former Secretaries of State Jim Baker and George Schultz, but come on gentlemen: you’ve been snookered.
These two esteemed gentlemen are endorsing a tax scam that would be one of the largest income redistribution schemes in modern times. It would do considerable and lasting damage to the U.S. The justification for the tax is that it will save the planet by reducing greenhouse gas emissions, but it won’t even do that.
The Baker-Schultz plan would impose on America a carbon tax, which would be a tax on American energy consumption. Since energy is a central component of everything that America produces, it would make the cost and thus the price of everything — and I mean everything — produced in America more expensive. It is a tax that only China, India, Mexico, and Russia could love.
The tax is highly regressive so the remedy that Mr. Baker and Mr. Schultz call for is a welfare check to every American — which they call a dividend. Somehow they have come to the conclusion that two really bad ideas paired together make for a good idea. Huh?
So let’s get this straight. We are going to tax the producers of the economy and then give the money to people who don’t produce and this isn’t going to negatively affect the economy? If this makes sense then why not adopt a 100 percent tax of production and then redistribute the money to everyone?
My colleague Katie Tubb at the Heritage Foundation has noted another glaring flaw with the carbon tax. While it is true that a carbon tax is a much more efficient way to cap carbon dioxide emissions than the mishmash of EPA regulations, renewable energy standards, and subsidies for wind and solar power, the high likelihood is that the carbon tax will not be a replacement for these economically destructive policies — rather an addition to the regulations and subsidies. It is naive in the extreme to think otherwise.