Atlantis Alumni

Monday, July 9, 2007

A Conservation Tax?

Congressman John D. Dingell (D-MI), is considering proposing a "carbon tax," a measure that would tax the burning of all carbon-based fuels. The aim would be to force the country to move to more energy efficient and ecologically friendly forms of energy. However, the proposal is a gambit because Dingell is convinced that his proposal will generate a firestorm of opposition. He believes that Americans are not willing to pay the price to move to better forms of energy. He's probably right. We have the luxury, at least for now, of continuing down our path of energy gluttony and irresponsibility. I would actually favor a conservation tax on gasoline. We have to do something to end America's dependence on the automobile. But, this would have to be accompanied by a domestic Marshall Plan to reinvigorate mass transit. We need to get on the European Plan. They have been paying $6 a gallon for gas for a long time now. So they drive smaller cars that get much higher gas mileage. More importantly, they have much better mass transit and great train service. We're going to have to bite the bullet sooner or later. It will be painful, but the longer we wait the tougher it will be.

Photo: a favorite garden in the Pines


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