Taxing Carbon in the Name of Climate Change

volcanic eruptionThe former Treasury Secretary Robert E. Rubin wrote in Washington Post on July 27, 2014, “How ignoring climate change could sink the U.S. economy.”
Not counting the non-enforced southern border and the hordes of new and lawless Democrat citizens who demand their fair share of the American dream now turned into a welfare nightmare, the national debt is most likely to sink the economy sooner than any other variable and that includes climate change that has been changing for millennia.
Rubin asserts that, since the “scientific community is all but unanimous in its agreement that climate change is a serious threat,” we have to include climate change risks in economic policy, fiscal and business decisions, even though we cannot define climate change risks with precision.
He cites a Gallup poll (we know how accurate opinion polls are) that nearly “60 percent of Americans believe that global warming is caused by human activity.” We’ve had 17 years of record cold temperatures and an unusually cold and late spring and summer. Every time progressives have met somewhere to hold a global warming protest or conference, Mother Nature rewarded them with blizzards and snow storms. Since the coastal areas are not underwater as Al Gore has predicted due to the melting of the polar ice caps, progressives have modified their talking points from global warming to climate change.
“The buildup of greenhouse gases is cumulative and irreversible.” Even though we’ve had record ice this year, Secretary Rubin repeats the environmentalists’ fallacious statement that “the melting polar ice sheets will cause sea levels to rise.” Did he learn in school why melting ice cubes in a glass does not cause the water to spill over?
The discussion, he said, has been incorrectly concentrated on the trade-off between environmental protection and economic prosperity. Instead, the discussion should be focused on the “cost of inaction.” Inaction is an exaggeration since every agency of the federal government has been ordered to adopt a climate change platform and the EPA has been busy forcing many coal powered plants to close due to their inability to comply with the draconian new rules imposed by the EPA.
Rubin believes that the long term cost of inaction is much greater than the cost of action. We are spending a lot of money on a healthy patient on the assumption that, at some point, this patient might get the plague.
A bipartisan effort (It must be good since it’s bipartisan) is measuring the economic risks of unchecked climate change in the U.S. Are we now so powerful that we can keep the climate in check? The report named “Risky Business,” was released in June 2014 under the co-chairmanship of the former Mayor of New York, Michael Bloomberg.
Apparently agriculture, energy, coastal property sectors, public health, and labor productivity will be significantly harmed by climate change by 2050.
We cannot accurately predict the weather a week in advance, or where the tornado will decide to touch down, but we can now predict and manipulate climate change? Maybe we can with cloud seeding.
How about Mark Armitage, the professor who found in 2012 soft tissue on a triceratops horn at Hell Creek Formation in Montana? His discovery sure turned on its head the “consensus” science that dinosaurs roamed the earth 60 million years ago. The soft tissue found under a powerful microscope proves that the fossil is “only 4,000 years old at most.” If triceratops roamed the earth at the same time as humans, then what theory are scientists going to advance now about climate change, its causes, and how dinosaurs disappeared? (Acta Histochemica, July 2013, Vol. 115(6): 603-608, doi:10.1016/j.acthis.2013.01.001)
Properties in Florida and Louisiana will be below sea level and thus flooded to the tune of $48-68 billion, said Rubin. I could be wrong but a lot of Louisiana and Florida are already below sea level and subject to floods. Al Gore told us in his award-winning documentary that sea levels would rise by 20 feet and many coastal nations would be under water “in the near future.”
Damage from super storms that are yet to occur, like Katrina and Sandy (combined $193 billion in economic losses), will drain the economy, he says. He states that “we can’t attribute all the damage caused by Katrina and Sandy to global warming,” but rising sea levels caused higher surges and these “super storms will increase if global warming persists.” He is sure that the damage will not be on a straight line, it will be on an “upward sloping curve.”
How do we mitigate the damage from a potential super storm or an erupting volcano? Why mitigate just potential super storm costs? Because environmentalists blame CO2 (carbon emissions) on human activity and they want to tax it. They certainly cannot tax a volcano spewing ash into the atmosphere or under sea volcanos that release lava and gases constantly, possibly accounting for the acidification of sea water.
“Carbon” is the chemical element with the symbol C and the atomic number 6. A second definition pops up, obviously driven by the global warming agenda, “carbon dioxide or other gaseous compounds released into the atmosphere, associated with climate change.”
Rubin’s Malthusian prognosis is that “dramatically rising temperatures in much of the country will make it far too hot for people to work outside during parts of the day for several months each year – reducing employment and economic output, and causing as many as 65,200 additional heat-related deaths every year.”
The actual deaths associated with exposure to excessive natural heat in the U.S. in the period of 1999-2010 when several super storms and hurricanes hit was 7,415, an average of 618 per year, the highest in 1999 (1,050) and the lowest in 2004 (295).
Incidentally, 2004 was the year that registered three super storms, Hurricane Charley that hit southwest Florida, Hurricane Ivan that hit the Caribbean and the Mid-Atlantic states, and Hurricane Frances that hit the Bahamas, Florida, the Carolinas, Ohio, and Canada.
Perhaps we should recall that unemployment is already at a very steep 18 percent, not the rosy and inaccurate MSM reporting of a constantly dropping unemployment rate (due to a larger and larger contingent of discouraged workers who gave up looking for work and are thus no longer counted, but receive unemployment or welfare), GDP has been negative in the last quarter, and measured temperatures around the globe have been cooler in the last 17 years.
Rubin identified three risks associated with “unmitigated climate change:
1. “Future federal spending to deal with climate change is likely to be enormous and should be included in fiscal projections” (the spending is already enormous, to the tune of trillions of dollars during this regime); costs must be covered either by increasing the deficit, raising taxes (Democrats’ favorite playbook), cutting spending on defense (they’re going that), cutting our social safety net (the safety net no longer exists due to government out of control spending and welfare largesse to evil dictatorships around the world), and cutting public investment in infrastructure, education, and basic research. Where did the stimulus billions go that were supposed to build and fix roads and bridges?
2. Investors should demand that companies “disclose their exposure to climate risks, assets that could be stranded by climate change, and the costs they may someday incur to address their carbon emissions.” (There is the real reason for this entire article, more taxes, taxing the carbon footprint.)
Former SEC chairwoman Mary Shapiro wants to encourage businesses to make such reporting mandatory in their quarterly disclosures. If not, SEC, the Wall Street regulator, should mandate such disclosures.
If climate-related risks are exposed, companies would be forced to change their polluting behavior.
3. GDP is not a good measure of our economy because it does not include negative externalities resulting from climate change. Rubin proposes a parallel GDP that reflects the impact of greenhouse gas emissions.
Tax the companies for the damage resulting from their emissions involved in producing goods and services and then pass the cost onto hapless consumers who need the goods and services to survive.
Suddenly we are faced with the never-before proposed scenario “to protect our economy by protecting the environment” or “allowing environmental havoc to create economic havoc.” The economy is “risky business” but it is even riskier when environmentalists are driving the debate of an economy to reflect the world as the globalists plan it to be.

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