Push to end car­bon tax will seem silly

Prairie Post (West Edition) - - Opinion -


I be­lieve the present “hew and cry” to re­move the car­bon tax will be seen his­tor­i­cally as a very silly ar­gu­ment. Sim­i­larly we look back at the views of the “Flat Earth So­ci­ety” as silly and ill in­formed.

Also we re­mem­ber the in­sis­tence of the to­bacco in­dus­try, not many decades ago, that to­bacco did not cause can­cer.

That, too, now sounds silly, led by silly (and di­abol­i­cal) in­dus­try peo­ple.

Sci­en­tists are telling us re­peat­edly and with ris­ing ur­gency that our world must move away from de­pen­dency on pe­tro­leum and do that as soon as pos­si­ble.

Dire con­se­quences await us the longer we de­lay. A car­bon tax of­fers us a mar­ket­based way to change con­sumer habits and move from pe­tro­leum de­pen­dency to other tech­nolo­gies.

Of course there will be vic­tims and some will be hurt more than oth­ers – our chal­lenge will be to mit­i­gate those costs and hurts as much as pos­si­ble.

Our real de­bate should be two fold. (1) How can we ease the tran­si­tion for those most vul­ner­a­ble, and (2) should we dou­ble or triple the present car­bon tax, so that we can make this tran­si­tion faster.

From those who at­tack the car­bon tax, I am not hear­ing any co­her­ent al­ter­na­tive that would en­able a quick tran­si­tion away from car­bon de­pen­dancy. Rather it seems they just don’t like taxes.

How­ever, if they know an al­ter­na­tive way we can make a speedy tran­si­tion away from car­bon, with no dis­com­fort, I am sure we would all lis­ten. Per­haps, like Don­ald Trump, they think the sci­en­tists are mis­taken.

Ap­proach­ing cli­mate change in turtle­like fash­ion may work for tur­tles in their habi­tat; how­ever, for the planet we want to hand on to our grand­chil­dren, it does not seem very wise.


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