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View Diary: A Dose of Reality — In Other Words, I Trust President Obama (528 comments)

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  •  As do Dems who cavalierly support Regressive Taxes (6+ / 1-)

    Surprisingly, certain Dems support ideas, Cap and Trade or a Carbon Tax, which were incubated in RightWing think tanks.

    Dems everywhere should evaluate fiscal policy in terms of whether it increases or decreases the concentration of wealth and income.

    And no one can dispute that both, Cap and Trade and a Carbon Tax, would exacerbate income inequality.

    Learn about Centrist Economics, learn about Robert Rubin's Hamilton Project.

    by PatriciaVa on Mon Dec 31, 2012 at 11:56:29 AM PST

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    •  Did you vote for these Democrats? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
    •  which is more damaging? (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Fiona West, caul, bontemps2012

      income inequality, or catastrophic climate change?  

    •  How? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Bob Friend, caul

      I can't see how this would make income inequality worse.

      Maybe my thoughts on this are wrong.

      Admit it, you've tried to control things with the power of your mind.

      by magicsister on Mon Dec 31, 2012 at 12:56:58 PM PST

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      •  It would make inequality worse b/c wkg poor and... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sebastianguy99, CenterLeft

        ...middle class spend far more on energy than the Warren Buffets and Larry Ellisons of the US.

        Furthermore, let's not forget that the US per/capita CO2 emissions are down 5% since 1990.  Many countries in Asia have doubled or tripled per/capita CO2 emissions since then.

        Clearly, the solution to climate change won't be found by increasing energy prices on the most vulnerable in the US.

        Learn about Centrist Economics, learn about Robert Rubin's Hamilton Project.

        by PatriciaVa on Mon Dec 31, 2012 at 01:53:09 PM PST

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        •  Working poor and middle class (12+ / 0-)

          Spend more on basic needs as a percentage than any richer person does. That's pretty much the definition of rich - you spend less on basic needs.

          Anything you do that impacts basic needs, including energy costs, will be felt more by the poor and middle class. That doesn't mean we shouldn't do something, it just means we need to provide some kind of subsidy for the poorer among us.

          But we should still make it more advantageous to switch to more alternative energy sources, regardless of your income.

        •  You have been making this argument about... (10+ / 0-)

          ...hurting the poor for a long time. But you keep ignoring what many of us have said in the past and are saying here: There are means of ameliorating the problem for the low-income portion of the population while gaining the benefits from cap and trade or carbon taxes. Not imposing such policies (and others) is going to have a helluva lot more draconian impact on the poor in the not-so-distant future. That part of the situation cannot be ignored.

          Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

          by Meteor Blades on Mon Dec 31, 2012 at 06:59:59 PM PST

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      •  The argument is that the working poor (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Mets102, mmacdDE, Laconic Lib, pgm 01, caul

        spend more than Scrooge McDuck, as a percentage of income, on their electric bills and refueling their cars.  The car thing is difficult to address but the electric bill can be easily addressed either local or nationally simply by exempting the first $x of a person's electric bill or first x number of kilowatt hours from taxation.  Should this be adjusted by region due to use of A/C?  There's good arguments on both sides but my gut feeling is yes.

        The car issue is a little squishier but maybe someone smarter than me can make a proposal, because it would involve the government tracking a person's fuel purchases in order to give a rebate for the first x gallons per month/year.  Could do it through taxes but that tends to reward people who itemize and collect receipts and also takes a lot of EITC recipients out of the equation.  This could be better addressed, imho, by assessing the carbon cost of driving at point of vehicle purchase and instead simply repurposing the gas tax towards a formula better weighted towards public transit.  A tax at purchase wouldn't necessarily catch used car transactions, although I suppose everyone has to register their title and maybe the tax could be paid at purchase, like California's infamous VLF.

        Anyhow, that's the concern, that a blanket "pay x cost for y energy consumption" tax would hit the poorest harder.  But I think that's easily fixed.

        "The first drawback of anger is that it destroys your inner peace; the second is that it distorts your view of reality. If you come to understand that anger is really unhelpful, you can begin to distance yourself from anger." - The Dalai Lama

        by auron renouille on Mon Dec 31, 2012 at 02:04:20 PM PST

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