Green Financial Advisor Makes the Case for a “Free Market” Carbon Tax

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

According to green fund manager Erik Kobayashi-Solomon a carbon tax is the free market solution to the climate crisis.

Carbon Tax: The Ultimate Free Market Solution To Climate Change

Erik Kobayashi-Solomon
Jan 25, 2019, 11:52am

Unlike a lot of mush-minded Greenies, I am under no illusion that a tax on carbon emissions will discourage people from burning carbon-based fuel or will serve just retribution on wasteful capitalists. Nor do I think that the taxing authority will use the collected funds for anything other than a typically idiotic boondoggle. In fact, I do not even believe that a carbon tax will do anything to stop the near-term effects of climate change (there is plenty of heat stored in the ocean, and those chickens will take decades to come home to roost).

No. My reasoning is based completely on free market considerations.

Humans do one thing phenomenally well: adapt to obstacles. If there is a mountain in front of us, we’ll climb it, build a tunnel through it, construct a road around it, and throw up a scenic overlook on the side of it.

The pure expression of human adaptability is the free market system.

Let’s say that the federal government enacted a levy of $10 per ton of CO2 emitted — a pittance next to the true, non-externalized cost of carbon.

The fact is that a $10 / ton carbon tax will do nothing or next to nothing to end prices or to the amount of CO2 released into the atmosphere. However, it will release the adaptive creativity of engineers and business people trying to find ways to help companies extract as much profit after the tax is imposed as they did before.

Then, it will be time to raise that tax to $15 / ton so we can watch the same wealth creating process occur once again.

Read more: https://www.forbes.com/sites/erikkobayashisolomon/2019/01/25/a-carbon-tax-the-ultimate-free-market-solution-climate-change/

Some people might find it fascinating to poke an ant’s nest with a big stick, to watch the ants unleash their “adaptive creativity” to repair the damage. But being poked with a big stick is pretty hard on the ants.

Here’s a radical thought Erik – instead of trying to argue the virtues of persuading politicians to coerce the “free market”, instead of celebrating the sacrifice and adaptability people would employ to overcome your artificial carbon tax mountain, how about developing products which people would want to purchase of their own free will?

98 thoughts on “Green Financial Advisor Makes the Case for a “Free Market” Carbon Tax

  1. “……release the adaptive creativity of engineers and business people trying to find ways to help companies extract as much profit after the tax is imposed as they did before……”

    Doesn’t the tax just make it harder for engineers and business people to extract profit?

      • It’s far easier and less costly to research and develop new energy production methods with the use of less costly energy sources. Why tax to the point of unaffordability that which you will need to create the infrastructure needed for the future. Truly Crazy

    • Erik K-S does not even understand the Broken Window Fallacy.

      Pillage Idiot Rule #167 – Never take economic advice from people who demonstrate that they do not understand the most basic fundamentals of economics.

    • This is akin to taxing DRINKING water or other drinking liquid and saying that people can live the same as they always have. It’s weird how in disaster, taxing drinking water or liquid is never implemented nor is it legal to price gouge. Weird huh? “But economics”…

  2. I wish they would at least call it what it is, a tax on carbon dioxide, plant food.

    Unless implemented globally, this would have zero effect on global emissions and serve only to redistribute wealth in the US. Giving politicians more money to dole out as they see fit is the antithesis of the role of the Federal government.

    Did no one see what is happening in France?

    • Actually when CO2 taxes are implemented in western countries, their jobs move to China, India, etc. where the jobs are supplied with electricity from coal. Result total global emissions of CO2 go up. Also going up are all kinds of real pollutants. Thank you greenies.

      • Good comments Jim and Joe.

        https://wattsupwiththat.com/2019/01/25/green-electricity-grid-collapses-during-aussie-heatwave/#comment-2604778

        [excerpt]

        Fourth, atmospheric CO2 is not alarmingly high, it is too low for optimal plant growth and alarmingly low for the survival of carbon-based terrestrial life. Look up “C3 photosynthesis” and “CO2 starvation” during ice ages.

        Fifth, even if ALL the observed global warming is ascribed to increasing atmospheric CO2, this calculated MAXIMUM climate sensitivity to a hypothetical doubling of atmospheric CO2 is only about 1 degree C, which is not nearly enough to produce dangerous global warming (Christy and McNider 2017, Lewis and Curry 2018). Climate computer models use much higher ASSUMED values to create false alarm.

        Sixth, atmospheric CO2 trends lag global temperature trends at all measured time scales, from ~9 months in the modern data record on a ~3 year natural cycle to ~~800 years in the ice core record, on a much longer time cycle. Rational observers have noted that the future cannot cause the past. (MacRae 2008 and Humlum et al 2013)

        Seventh, CO2 is NOT a major driver of global warming – any warming caused by increasing atmospheric CO2 will be minor and net-beneficial to humanity and the environment.

        Eighth, Earth is colder-than-optimum for humanity and the environment. More than 50,000 Excess Winter Deaths occurred in just England and Wales last winter – an Excess Winter Death rate almost three times the per-capita average in the USA. (d’Aleo and MacRae 2015)

        Tenth, the IPCC and the leaders of the global warming movement have a perfectly negative predictive track record – every one of their very-scary predictions of runaway catastrophic global warming and more extreme weather have failed to materialize. The ability to correctly predict is the best objective measure of scientific competence, and the warmist cabal have a perfectly negative predictive track record, demonstrated negative competence, and negative personal credibility. Nobody should believe them or their alarmist nonsense..

        Regards, Allan MacRae

      • Agreed Jim M, joe and Allan!

        “Let’s say that the federal government enacted a levy of $10 per ton of CO2 emitted”

        No matter what Erik Kobayashi-Solomon falsely portrays the levy, it is a forced tax and definitively not “free market”.

        Forcing people to “pay” for imagined carbon dioxide costs is absurd.
        “Viva à la revolucion des gilets-jaunes“!

      • That’s incorrect. The jobs of people who have to work for a living, manufacture things, farm, raise kids, etc. will migrate to those countries, plus Latin America. The jobs of people who promote carbon taxes will never go away. They will just get richer. Weird that they promote this, huh?

  3. “Humans do one thing phenomenally well: adapt to obstacles. If there is a mountain in front of us, we’ll climb it, build a tunnel through it, construct a road around it, and throw up a scenic overlook on the side of it.”

    We are also great at determining that sometimes, the best option is the do nothing option. Yes, lets do nothing as there is no crisis!

    Those old enough, such as myself, have been witness to claim after claim of climate doom due to fossil fuel burning. Not one single prediction has come to pass. The climate is fine. The planet is fine. We have more food to know what to do with. We have more time on our hands to study rather than toil in fields to feed ourselves. We have great health medicines, technology and life expectancy.

    Let’s do nothing to fight (Tax) a non-problem (Climate crisis) and do more to improve the lives of those who don’t have access to reliable energy.

    • A rational approach does nothing to shake the money tree created by constant fear-mongering. Nothing can EVER be “fine” ever again – the imaginary menckenian hobgoblins must be fed an ever richer diet of alarm and clamor….

    • Patrick MJD: Humans do one thing phenomenally well: adapt to obstacles. If there is a mountain in front of us, we’ll climb it, build a tunnel through it, construct a road around it, and throw up a scenic overlook on the side of it.”
      Change the word “mountain” to “wall” and copy to Trump.

      • The Mexicans migrants have no technology to defeat the wall and the technology behind it.
        The border wall is not a static, undefended obstacle. Look at walls elsewhere in the world and you’ll get educated about the value of a wall.

      • Not too many “engineers and business people” immigrating illegally through the Arizona desert. The rest of them, facing a 30 foot tall barrier might have some difficulty.

      • Weird how there are no permanent settlements in Antarctica. The guy who suggests that that there ought to be, based on the entire premise of his argument, is a highly educated idiot. He is as degreed as Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is. Indeed, in the same field. How much gold do you think is in Antarctica? Rare Earths? “But economics”… Do you know how many miles the Arctic sea route would shave off of Panama? “But economics!!!”…

  4. Here’s another radical thought – instead of trying to argue the virtues of coercing the “free market” to spend money on removing CO2, how about developing a real and genuine proof that there is a problem caused by CO2 and not a mulitude of benefits as we are beginning to see?

  5. Since the benefits of “carbon” far outweigh its costs, as climate changes engineers and business owners will exercise their creative adaptabilities to use energy resources wisely to create ever greater global prosperity. In the past two decades abject global poverty was cut in half thanks to fossil fuels, not “green” energy’s two percent contribution to global energy consumption. Erik Kobayashi-Solomon appears to be a “broken window” economics believer; break a window and the cost of repair adds to productivity, overlooking better uses for resources to create new values instead of just maintaining the old.

  6. Erik Kobayashi-Solomon’s brain looks like:
    a – a pretzel;
    b – a Jackson Pollock painting;
    c – the worst freeway interchange.

    Pick one.

  7. “Humans do one thing phenomenally well: adapt to obstacles.”

    This not-so-deep thinker, Erik Kobayashi-Solomon, must have a very curious definition of “adapt. ”

    He obviously hasn’t seen the Yellow Vest movement in France.
    He obviously missed the lesson of the Brexit vote.
    He clearly doesn’t understand why Donald Trump was elected US President.

    Maybe Louis XVI could inform him on how Frenchmen of La Révolution “adapted” their views on Liberté, égalité, fraternité? And Mess. Louis Capet lost his head in that dispute.

    What Erik Kobayashi-Solomon does not seem to understand in his some 50-ish years of existence is that some “obstacles” are qualitatively different than others. A yacht tax (or any luxury tax)? OK kill the US luxury boat industry and send it overseas, the rich still pay for their yachts. You just un-employed a century of yacht building in New England (to wit: John Kerry-HeinzKetchup). Most people don’t notice.

    But impose a tax on energy? Energy is at the heart of our modern society. Which of course is why the socialists want it. Control energy, and you control EVERYTHING. Tax on energy is Fundamentally different, and it is highly regressive.

    Enter Yellow Vests.

    Of course, Mr Erik Kobayashi-Solomon could always just say, “Let them eat cake.”
    But that didn’t work out so well either.

  8. “However, it will release the adaptive creativity of engineers and business people trying to find ways to help companies extract as much profit after the tax is imposed as they did before. Then, it will be time to raise that tax to $15 / ton so we can watch the same wealth creating process occur once again.”

    I suggest we impose some (a lot of) taxes on Erik Kobayashi-Solomon to help him create more wealth.

    • Raise taxes on companies.
      Companies costs rise cutting into profits.
      Companies raise prices to regain initial profits.

      Yes, companies will develop a method for retaining profits in the realm of carbon taxation…it’s called higher prices to consumers

      • Companies don’t pay taxes. Any tax imposed on them is funded by raising prices to its customers, by cutting wages, by reducing the workforce, by cutting investment and by reduced dividends paid out to shareholders (ordinary people and pension funds). Not that socialists understand this but then if they understood economics they wouldn’t be socialists.

  9. How about a 10% wealth tax per year on any citizen with a 100 million in global assets not being put to productive uses that create jobs in the US. Thats a mountain I’d enjoy seeing them scramble to conquer.

    • Yes, lets punish owners of multinational companies who choose to live in the USA. Sounds like a great plan for economic growth, chase off all the rich people so poor people don’t feel so poor.

    • Pft: If the money is deposited in a bank, the bank uses it to make loans. If it is invested, those receiving the money from the transfer of those investments are making other investments with it. No one capable of acquiring large sums of money would shove physical currency in a safe, where its value would only be eroded by inflation. Physical gold and silver? The cash paid for them is circulating in the marketplace, and the storage of raw materials has no more effect on the economy than if they were still in the ground.

      • About the only thing I could think of that might qualify as non wealth producing assets would be homes. However such homes exist. How is the government going to take 10% of them per year, and what would the government do with it’s 10%?

        • Government could take 10% annually through property taxation. (Just eliminate Prop13 protection)
          In California, back in 1978, Proposition 13 was voted on to eliminate that possibility and to stop tax increases through property value reassessment.
          It limited the annual tax rate to 1% and prohibited reassessment of a new base year value except in cases of change in ownership, or completion of new construction thereby protecting older Californians from being priced out of their homes through increased taxation.

        • Homes are the easiest asset to tax, it’s called the property tax (and it’s already burdensomely high in some states). The real question is how are they going to determine what all constitutes “taxable” wealth and how would they go about taxing it.

    • Pft, any citizen with 100 million in global assets got there because they do put those assets to productive use. What you think they’re Scrooge McDuck, storing all their assets in a vault under their house where they go swimming in gold coins every day? That’s a cartoon, not reality. In reality their assets are locked up in various investments generating economic activity – activity that provides people with jobs.

  10. The only creativity it will unleash is fraud.
    Just like all of these taxes that can be exchanged for “abatement” someone will create “credits” that they will sell for less than the tax. Those credits will of course be fake. Since the size of the taxation based carbon economy will be huge, no-one will be verifying it, or the certifying authority will be easily bought because the money for nothing is just too tempting.
    It’s happened all before with carbon credits.

    • Why are we not pressing criminal charges on the people who impose taxes and cause wrongful death or serious suffering on the poor? Is this not genocidal ideology?

  11. “Then, it will be time to raise that tax to $15 / ton so we can watch the same wealth creating process occur once again.” The mind boggles at this statement. What is the endgame here? Ordinary people will struggle with the increasingly increase in inflation that that strategy entails and the inflation will always be greater than the rebates because of inefficiencies in trying to switch fuels and the huge government bureaucracy set up to administer the program especially with industries that get special exemptions because of importance. After a couple of years of this with little or no decrease in CO2 emissions, the increase in the tax starts to bite the producers (who can’t pass on their extra costs) 1 by 1 to start leaving the country. Of those who can pass on the extra costs, the inflation rate just keeps increasing until you reach a point where the producers who can’t switch fuels see their demand for their product spiral downward as the consumers can no longer afford the huge prices. The whole economy starts to spiral downward as anything produced by fossil fuels gets too expensive. Hopefully the yellow vests will be out in the streets before then. So in the end you end up as a 3rd world country with blackouts and brownouts of electricity. At this point electricity becomes so expensive that even electric vehicles are a non starter and the populace has long ago now abandoned gas/diesel cars. The truckers who haul the goods can’t make a living because of the huge fuel costs and the stores start to empty.

    Hmmmmmmmmmmm, where have we seen this scenario before? You end up with a failed society that was caused by a CO2 tax.

  12. 1. The incentive is already there. The first person to come up with a replacement for fossil fuels that has similar utility and cost would be an instant trillionaire. No $10 carbon to required.

    2. The notion that humans overcome obstacles is correct, but limited to those cases where there is a way to actually overcome the obstacle. I’d like to be able to fly for example, completely powered by my own body. Alas, I cannot turn off gravity, the main obstacle to my goal. You could tax airplanes to death, it won’t change gravity, The physics of energy and fossil fuels are fairly well known, taxing them won’t change the laws of physics, so the obstacles will remain. If all it took was a bit of incentive to get past the laws of physics… well, see point 1. Above

  13. He needs to be more specific. A carbon tax, imposed WHERE EXACTLY?

    A carbon tax imposed in the US will have no effect on reducing emissions globally. It might slightly reduce US emissions, but not by an amount that will offset either the current emissions or the rises in those emissions taking place in the rest of the world.

    Now, if we imposed a carbon tax in China, that might lower Chinese emissions and that in turn would certainly lower global emissions. But no-one even thinks of advocating that.

    So, yet again, why are we considering taking local actions which will cost the people who live in the US a bomb, but have zero effect on the supposed global problem which is the supposed reason for taking them?

    I notice that in a similar sort of frenzy the Guardian wants to impose full rate VAT on heating fuel in the UK. Its now 5%, the Guardian wants to take it to 20%. Its readers can afford it. If you can’t, and a lot of people cannot afford to heat their homes properly as it is, well you will just have a long cold winter.

    This is what progressive liberalism has come to: taxing necessities of the poor in the most regressive fashion. The Guardian already supports the existing tax on electricity, in the form of the charges on bills which then go to subsidize wind and solar. The VAT proposal would add to that burden on necessities, and would hit the poor far more severely than the relatively well off Guardian readers.

    Its to save the planet, you see. We will reduce UK emissions from 450 million tons a year to about 400, and this will…. do what exactly?

    It will make us feel better, and we will never see or talk to any of our old, poor fellow citizens who die in disproportionate numbers every winter, and who will die in still greater numbers, in pursuit of an action which can have no effect on the problem cited as its justification.

    • Tax imposed on fossil fuel use like Gasoline (gal), Diesel (gal), Propane (gal), Natural Gas (1000cu’) Kerosene (gal), Fuel Oil (gal), and Coal (short ton)
      At $10 per ton, their respective carbon taxes would be.. $0.09 (gasoline), $0.10 (diesel), $0.06 (propane), $0.53 (nat. gas), $0.10 (kerosene), $0.12 (fuel oil), $21.01 (coal) for every $10 increment of increased carbon tax
      Collected from the suppliers but charged to and ultimately paid by their customers

  14. Here’s a question for anyone if they have the time. At Dr Cowton’s York uni tool the trend from 1910 to 1950 is 0.125/decade and the trend from 1950 to 2019 is also 0.125c/decade.
    This is using IPCC’s preferred HAD Crut 4 Krig global. Co2 levels in 1910 were about 310 ppm and perhaps 315ppm by 1950. But this had increased to about 350ppm by 1990 and now about 409ppm by 2019.
    So how does anyone make sense of this data since 1910 and 1950? Of course since 1850 to 2019 the trend is much lower at 0.056 c/decade.
    Can anyone offer an opinion about this data? Here’s the York Uni tool link.

    http://www.ysbl.york.ac.uk/~cowtan/applets/trend/trend.html

    • ”Can anyone offer an opinion about this data?”

      Clearly it means:
      1) CO2 has little influence on overall global temperatures.
      or.
      2) before 1950, something else influenced global temps, but after 1950 the tail started wagging the dog.

      You decide.

    • “Here’s a question for anyone if they have the time. At Dr Cowton’s York uni tool the trend from 1910 to 1950 is 0.125/decade and the trend from 1950 to 2019 is also 0.125c/decade.
      So how does anyone make sense of this data since 1910 and 1950?”

      Well, you have to look at the proper global temperature profile to make sense of it.

      Here is the Hansen 1999 US temperature chart, which represents the true global temperature profile, unlike HadCRUT4.

      As you can see, the temperatures warmed from about 1910 to 1940, then the temperatures cooled from 1940 to about 1980, (with a spike up in the 1950’s), and then the temperatues warmed up agsin from 1980 to the present. The warmings and the coolings in this whole period were of the same magnitude.

      The magnitude of the 1910 to 1940 warming is the same magnitude as the warming from 1980 to the present. The warming from 1910 to 1940 was not due to CO2. Since the warming from 1980 to the present is the same magnitufed as the 1910 to 1940 warming, and started from the same low-point place on the chart, no CO2 is required for the present warming either.

      Why do I say a US temperature chart represents the globe? Because other charts from around the world resemble the US chart which shows the 1930’s to be as warm or warmer than subsequent years.

      The modern-period Hockey Stick chart you are using, HadCRUT4, has been modified to hide the warming in the 1930’s and make it look much cooler in comparison to today’s temperatures, as a means to promote the CAGW scare stories.

      And even though the Climategate manipulators changed the appearance of the global temperature chart, they were not able to hide the fact that the magnitude of the warming in each period was equal to each other.

      In order for the HadCRUT4 chart to resemble reality, you would have to tilt the picture of that graph until the blue lines were horizontal and the 1930’s was at the same level as 2016.

      The following shows a comparison of the Hansen 1999 US chart (on the left) with the Hockey Stick chart (on the right). NASA claims the US temperature profile looks completely different than the global temperature profile, but the only problem with that claim is all unmodified (by NASA) charts from around the world resemble the US chart profile, and none of them resemble the bogus, bastardized modern-period Hockey Stick chart.

      The Climategate manipulators were tryng to erase the appearance of warmth in the 1930’s, because if it was just as hot in the 1930’s as it is today, then that means there is no unpredented warming today and no reason to invoke CO2 as a control knob of the climate, and so the Climategate charlatans would be out of a job.

      So they changed the global temperature profile from looking like the one on the left to looking like the one on the right. They cheated and lied and have turned climate science into a very expensive and hazardous circus as a result. We owe them a lot. A lot of punishment.

      http://www.giss.nasa.gov/research/briefs/hansen_07/

    • He makes his money by sending other people’s money to green rent-seekers. A CO2 tax would only benefit that group of green profiteers. For the rest of us?

  15. Although I have no easy figures at hand to support this contention, I here assert that the social benefit of private enterprise has an inverse, strong relationship with the quantity of relevant government laws and regulations.
    Few people alive today have seen the sparkle of unencumbered free enterprise. It was the big factor in Frontier times, before governments were organized enough to interfere; in more recent history, it has shown itself prominent in ‘boom times’ for the economies of many countries.
    The best solution to this taxing problem being discussed is simple. Remove all government impediments to the mining and/or recovering of fuels needed by industry to make electricity. Then, remove all express and implied coercive methods to favor one method of electricity production over another. Finally, remove all subsidies that destroy the level playing field for players in the energy generation game.
    Ya know, for countries like USA, Australia, Canada, Great Britain, etc., it is often assumed that free market people, unless held in check, will act to disadvantage ordinary people in society. This is wrong. The people who make free enterprise work are mostly, just those ordinary people. They have children, grandchildren, an inherent love of Nature to some extent or another and an innate drive to minimize harm to others. It is the power of hateful advertising that has made people scared of free enterprise. It is not a horrible history of past performance, because there is no such story of any strength. Geoff.

  16. It will also realise all the adaptability of the tax lawyers , who will always find the loopholes left by the politicians in any legislation. Thus the elites will still have their private jets or boats, while they work so hard to yet again, ” Save the Planet”.

    So just as always to control energy is the modern equivalent of controlling the food supply or or as with the various faith systems, peoples minds.
    Control as always is the name of the game. .

    Instead of just another tax, lets have on offer a prize, for the most efficient way of producing electricity, but it must be even better than the best of the fossell fuel systems. And no government grant.

    MJE

  17. “According to green fund manager Erik Kobayashi-Solomon a carbon tax is the free market solution to the climate crisis.”

    Yet another plea for more free government money to allow these people to sit back on their yachts sucking Cuban cigars.

  18. How is introducing an artificial impost on the cost of energy, such as the suggested carbon tax, any different to an increase in the price of coal, gas or oil? When has an increase in the cost of energy result in a ‘wealth creating process’? A carbon tax will cause stagflation: an increase in the price of commodities, and the cost of living, without any net economic growth.

  19. “will release the adaptive creativity of engineers and business people”

    Has happened already resulting in an ever growing set of studies and financial analysis undermining all aspects of the CO2 related scam. Further.

    Occam’s razor says that amongst several hypothesis, the simplest one is the best. That’s why proponents of creative CO2 “free money” schemes face that much resistance.

  20. Increasing the cost of FFs would prevent natural gas from stealing nuclear power sales, and
    that would save and make even more desirable to build molten salt small modular nuclear reactors, which can produce energy roughly half as expensive as massive, conventional light water reactors,
    and cheaper than anything except cheap natural gas. Unfortunately it would also promote really stupid forms of power generation, especially with respect to their effect of the grid, namely wind and soalar. How about a requirement that power generators have to be reliable (power available on demand).

    • :rollseyes:

      kent, molten salt small modular nuclear reactors need to be created first. They’re still vaporware, and look to remain vaporware for the foreseeable future. I wish as much as anyone that someone will figure them out and get them working to scale commercially (assuming they’re half as good as they’re hyped to be), but that hasn’t happened yet and doesn’t look to be happening anytime soon.

  21. “However, it will release the adaptive creativity of engineers and business people trying to find ways to help companies extract as much profit after the tax is imposed as they did before.”

    It doesn’t take any creativity to do what businesses have done to keep their profits the same since the beginning of time. Pass the extra expenses on to the consumer. Duuuh!

  22. It’s can’t be a “free” market if half the participants are only there because there is a government automatic riffle pointed at their chest.

  23. The true cost of carbon? As it appears that the rise in CO2 levels is a net positive EKS’s desire for an appropriate tax rate should actually be a subsidy.

    • To make the statement that the SCC is much higher, he must buy into the idea that combining unreliable UN IPCC climate models with unreliable econometric models over a 300 year period, one may obtain useful, governmental policy-relevant information. Then again, he may just be doing his own rent-seeking, without actually believing that crap.

    • Exactly Tom, the true cost of carbon isn’t a cost at all but a benefit – the plants love the stuff, which means better crops which means being able to feed more people.

  24. Unlike a lot of mush-minded Greenies, I am under no illusion…”

    Apparently trying to establish his own credentials as not a “…mush-minded Greenie…”…? Well, he failed. Trying to claim you’re not a Greenie when you clearly are one doesn’t make you non-Greenie, anymore than trying to say a government imposed “tax” is free-market makes it free-market. Multiple fails (or should we just be blunt and call them outright lies?) in the very first sentence. *sigh* SMH

    • I don’t believe he was trying to prove he wasn’t a greenie, it’s just that he isn’t one of those “mush-minded greenies”.
      Regardless, he failed at that as well.

      • Indeed, just the claim that a carbon tax is a “free-market” concept shows that he very much is one of those “mush-minded” greenies.

  25. All of the carbon pricing schemes are intended to phase out burning of fossil fuels and replace them with renewable energy platforms. Truly the scale of this notion is monumental since modern nations (think G20) rely on oil, coal and gas for 90%+ of their energy needs. Not only that, the supposed renewable energy tech is immature and dysfunctional to power supply. Moreover, despite massive subsidies, it is an economic sinkhole. The latest demonstration of green energy facts on the ground is provided by Falmouuth Mass.
    Boston Globe has the story of Falmouth’s Green Energy Blues: https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2019/01/23/green-energy-blues-town-that-sought-something-about-climate-change/XiNySqj81IimsF7jJ36IFI/story.html

    My Synopsis is https://rclutz.wordpress.com/2019/01/27/green-energy-blues-falmouth-city-cautionary-tale/

  26. Hopefully, I am not repeating another’s comment, but these nonsensical carbon taxes are not only based on the crazy belief that CO2 is an existential boogeyman, but also on what is known as The Glaziers Fallacy, or the Parable of the Broken Window from Frédéric Bastiat in his 1850 essay “Ce qu’on voit et ce qu’on ne voit pas”: The economic stress of artificial taxation (for political ends) creates the same misallocation problems as accidental or intensional destruction. In this case, the economic gain of the glazier to repair a broken window is not a net gain to the economy. In fact, fully accounted, a net loss is more likely. Similarly, taxation imposed to “create” economic activity generally results in an overall reduction.
    But hey…..why worry about facts?

  27. The author apparently believes that those scientists and engineers aren’t already fully engaged in trying to find ways to do more with less.
    Doing more with less means greater profits, and what company is not constantly looking for ways to improve profits.
    What the author wants is for engineers to be pulled from other wealth generating activities so that they can spend their days finding ways to minimize the pain of the taxes he wants to impose.
    Such activity will always result in less wealth in the long run.

    • “Such activity will always result in less wealth in the long run.”

      Only for those who aren’t able to use government power to steal that wealth for themselves.

  28. The free market solution to a tax is to fire your work force, raid the pension fund and relocate your business to a more business friendly environment.

    Exactly what happened over the past 20 years as business has relocated from the US to China.

    China has no carbon tax. Add a US carbon tax and in 10 years you end up with only Amazon and the USPS doing business in the US.

  29. “..(there is plenty of heat stored in the ocean, and those chickens will take decades to come home to roost).”

    No it won’t, honey.

    Per the laws of thermodynamics, if the ocean heats up by 0.1 degrees, then that heat can’t come out and heat the atmosphere by more than 0.1 degrees. In fact, it must heat it by less.

  30. There’s already a free market carbon tax: the UN Certified Emissions Reduction certificates.
    Current price is 24 cents per tonne of CO2.
    No not 24 dollars, 24 cents.

    In this the free market is reflecting the real price of CO2 emissions: zero, plus transaction costs.

  31. I am under no illusion that a tax on carbon emissions will discourage people from burning carbon-based fuel or will serve just retribution on wasteful capitalists…… My reasoning is based completely on free market considerations.

    If you are advocating for a “tax” you are not advocating for anything that could be labeled a free market solution. In fact you clearly don’t understand what a free market is.

    Here’s a hint for you

    A free market is a system in which the prices for goods and services are set freely by consent between vendors and consumers, in which the laws and forces of supply and demand are free from any intervention by a government, price-setting monopoly, or other authority.”

  32. “Free-market carbon tax.” That’s term is a work of art to a wordsmith. I am inspired to come up with my own:

    Cost-saving expenses
    Free-market communism
    Democratic socialism (Oops, that one’s already been invented.)
    Guilt-free calories
    Fat-burning food
    Beneficial financial drain

    • smell-free odors
      military intelligence (Oops, that one’s already been invented.)
      intelligent dummies

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