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Cap and trade numbers revised by MIT professor (again)

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

Now the amount is $3,900?  Ignoring the source, any thoughts on this?

 

http://blog.heritage.org/2009/04/22/earth-day-update-cap-and-trades-3900-per-family-per-year-price-tag/

post #2 of 4

The thing is that the MIT prof is trying to be honest and thorough, whereas Heritage and Republicans are trying to only show the negative.

 

The way they're portraying it, they're treating the cap and trade as a tax, which it's not.  It will make energy and fuel costs go up.  So the MIT prof estimates that this will cost your average family $3900/year.  But, he also points out that this revenue is going to go somewhere.  It doesn't just go into a black hole, which is how the Republicans are treating it.

 

So the MIT guy estimates that when you account for how the money is spent, the overall cost to the average family is about $800 per year.  I don't know how he calculates this, since I think it's very far from certain how the revenue will be spent.  Regardless, the $3900 claim is simply dishonest.  If you're going to calculate the costs to the average family you have to include all impacts to their budget - both costs and returns.

post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dana1981 View Post

The thing is that the MIT prof is trying to be honest and thorough, whereas Heritage and Republicans are trying to only show the negative.

 

The way they're portraying it, they're treating the cap and trade as a tax, which it's not.  It will make energy and fuel costs go up.  So the MIT prof estimates that this will cost your average family $3900/year.  But, he also points out that this revenue is going to go somewhere.  It doesn't just go into a black hole, which is how the Republicans are treating it.

 

So the MIT guy estimates that when you account for how the money is spent, the overall cost to the average family is about $800 per year.  I don't know how he calculates this, since I think it's very far from certain how the revenue will be spent.  Regardless, the $3900 claim is simply dishonest.  If you're going to calculate the costs to the average family you have to include all impacts to their budget - both costs and returns.


Certainly I'm inclined to agree that it is an estimate, but I think people want to understand better exactly how this money will be returned to the system.  It's safe to say that a portion of it will, but how much and where?  It seems nearly impossible to do a cost/benefit analysis, but I think there have to be some good forecasts. 

I'm not an economics expert by any means, but I'm willing to play devil's advocate here.  I think it's an important step in bringing people around to support policies if they understand what the policies actually mean and aren't required to think abstractly about them.

post #4 of 4

Seems to me that anytime the government takes money away from you it is a form of taxation (unless it is a fine).

 

Actually I think that whatever the government collects does go into a black hole though some portion comes out eventually (maybe). Part of it will have to go to the federal budget to pay for the immense debt being taken on. If all of Obama's wish list is put into play it will require a lot more income to support it.

 

Say China decides not to support the US government debt (a realistic expectation in global politics) then what happens? Suppose Japan and other Asian or Middle East countries went stronger to the Euro - then what happens? 

 

The future will not be kind to all of us I expect.

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