Had to happen of course

Snippa’s now in opposition to every economist:

At its core the reason why I dislike both those notions is that they miss the point of the climate crisis. What they presuppose is that we can price our way out of an emissions crisis that we now know threatens the future of life on earth. And the simple fact is that we can’t do that. There is no way we can be priced out of this issue. We can only solve the emissions crisis by stopping emissions. And taxing them won’t do that, any more than taxing tobacco has ever stopped smoking. Other measures – like bans – have been needed to make progress on that goal. That is even more the case for carbon.

The core claim there is that prices don’t change consumer behaviour.

Idiocy.

Second, this assumption presumes that we, as consumers, know as much about the products that we buy as those who sell them do. It is presumed, therefore, by the proponents of carbon taxes and carbon trading that we can make rational, informed decisions on this issue after tax is added to a price.

Sigh, the change in price is the information.

The ideas behind both carbon taxes and carbon pricing are, then, wrong. But carbon tax is also wrong in practice. First, that’s because there is no one who denies that these would be regressive, because all consumption taxes are and this would have to be a consumption tax. Second, that’s because this would mean that any carbon tax would have to be matched by redistribution through other tax and benefits mechanisms, largely neutering its impact and making the whole thing a folly.

The actual proposal has always been to do that very redistribution. The most common one being to raise the personal allowance for NICs (or other worker paid social security contributions the name depending upon the country).

Carbon taxes also shift the whole blame for carbon consumption from the manufacturers, who willfully create the carbon outputs, to consumers, who are offered few or no alternatives to polluting products.

In addition, carbon taxes, by shifting the blame to consumers, put no responsibility for innovation or change on manufacturers. The result is that they will still sell polluting products, knowing they will still be bought.

The price changes, demand changes. So does the opportunity for new suppliers to produce now lower cost alternatives. Is there no beginning to this man’s ignorance of market processes?

Of all the ways to tackle climate change these ideas are, then, just about the worst way to go.

Gonna be interesting when this meets an actual economist, isn’t it?

Jeez, why doesn’t he go read the stern Review? Which explains it all rather nicely.

21 comments on “Had to happen of course

  1. I don`t understand his point but it is not right that pricing alone always leads to the most desirable outcome – in fact the whole notion of a market that exists outside the rest of human interaction by custom and law is one of my problems with the fundamentalists.
    Rationing has often been used in case of emergency and especially when the “problem” is generalised and long term but that is not something to set against including extrenalities in pricing ..in fact it is a good example of how “price ” and market are not disembodied concepts but sit within civilised relationships.
    My problem with t Greenwashed socialism or Greenwashed puritanism is that it is exactly the fizzy energy of capitalism that is generating the answers
    There is loads if energy is pours down all day long form the sky, the problem is getting it storing it and using it without losing most of it
    Otherwise we could cover the Sahara Deseret in panels and have all the energy we could ever need ( a real plan )
    There are exciting developments in batteries right now and we will solve this ..not with fear and cowering around the campfire telling scary stories

  2. Spud had a go at Martin Wolf on this topic, which I forwarded on to Mr Wolf. He replied

    “I don’t take Richard Murphy seriously.”

  3. Otherwise we could cover the Sahara Deseret in panels and have all the energy we could ever need ( a real plan )

    You volunteering to go and live in the Sahara to keep the panels from being buried under sand dunes? Maybe we can give those jobs to Africans to keep them from crossing the Med in rickety boats. Good grief, you are a halfwit.

  4. Andrew C

    I do think Wolf’s attitude should be adopted more widely. Leave him to stew in his miasma of ignorance.

  5. At its core the reason why I dislike both those notions is that they miss the point of the climate crisis

    Indeed they do – they miss the point that it is the chance in a lifetime for the totalitarians to grab power over every aspect of life in the West. A mere “pricing mechanism” isn’t going to do that.

  6. Otherwise we could cover the Sahara Deseret in panels and have all the energy we could ever need ( a real plan )

    You volunteering to go and live in the Sahara to keep the panels from being buried under sand dunes? Maybe we can give those jobs to Africans to keep them from crossing the Med in rickety boats. Good grief, you are a halfwit.

    Yes I must be an idiot , next we`ll trying to get oil from under the sea I mean actually underwater ..ffs and I`ve heard they think they can get coal ..wait for it ,from actually underground ?
    No you fucking know-nothing imbecile, this idea has been toyed with quite a bit,but the problem is not the sand its the storage and transportation of energy (well and the politics and the grid obviously ) but in any case my general point was that technology is the answer

  7. Except, Violet Elizabeth, drilling for oil and mining for coal actually works in the real world. Yes there are real risks but it still works. Covering the desert with solar panels is grade A stupidity and like all so-called environmentalists, you don’t give a toss about the environmental impact.

  8. For those interested he is super proud a letter of printed in the FT . Search Richard Murphy “Bring climate change onto a companies balance sheet”..comments are invited. Someone has already pointed out it will be part of his attempt to raise “research funding” now he is redundant.

  9. ‘they miss the point of the climate crisis’

    Which is to scare the public into accepting socialism and one world government.

    It has double-ought zero to do with the weather.

    A tax on carbon is government attempting to scare the public into accepting socialism and one world government.

  10. @JJ Burnell

    It’s always good fun when Spud enters a debating arena he can’t control.

    I don’t have access to the FT site but hopefully he gets a good kicking.

    Someone ought to point out that his proposals include profitable companies which can’t become carbon neutral (and there will be many as he has ruled off-setting out) should be shut down. Which would be economically disastrous of course.

  11. Otherwise we could cover the Sahara Deseret in panels and have all the energy we could ever need…

    Newmania demonstrates he knows about as much about the Sahara’s ecosystem as he does about anything else.

    Technical problems abound, dear boy, and they’d be obvious if only you had the wit to look. The political problems are even more obvious…

  12. Carbon taxes also shift the whole blame for carbon consumption from the manufacturers, who willfully create the carbon outputs, to consumers, who are offered few or no alternatives to polluting products.

    Wherein Richard Murphy neatly absolves himself of all responsibility for causing “the crisis”, which means, of course, that he will happily exempt himself from whatever pain is associated with solving “the crisis”.

    Typical Lefty.

  13. He claims that carbon tax is wrong because it’s regressive – so WTF is taking us back to the middle ages when we lose the light, heating, transport and efficient food production?

    That’ll be the most regressive policy ever if it were implemented (which outside of martial law it won’t be).

  14. I must say the industrial covering of the desert out here in the Mojave has had little effect on the local flora. It seems to grow as well under the solar panels as it does in the open desert. No ecological disaster taking place.

    The biggest problem with solar is the storage. The beauty of hydrocarbons is that they are so energy dense. But then again they are just stored solar energy from millions of years ago

  15. We cannot price ourselves out of a climate crisis BECAUSE – China. The Chinese Communist Party doesn’t care what happens to the rest of the world and will not impose price controls that puts Chinese CO2-emitting industries at a disadvantage.
    Various climate scientists have estimated that the world needs to reduce CO2 emissions by 73% to avoid “catastrophe” – China produces 28-and-a-bit% the Rest of the World 71-and-a-bit% so we cannot do it without Chinese co-operation. Meanwhile China is increasing emissions each year (on average it increases emissions every two years by an amount roughly equal to the UK’s annual emissions – so the effect of totally eliminating our CO2 emissions would be wiped out in six months by China’s increase).
    If you are worried about Climate Change tackle Xi JingPing

  16. John 77.
    You might add India, Russia, and most of the non-western world to China.
    We Europeans either need a practical plan to colonise the planet pronto, or we need to accept that CO2 emissions aren’t going to be controlled.

  17. There is no emissions crisis. There is no point in arguing about the best solution to a problem that does not exist in terms of due diligence of thos who claim it does.

    Gamecock has it right, above.

  18. Ritchie has seen this then, but hesitates on promoting Poverty for all

    11,000 scientists from across world unite to declare Eugenics* and Poverty** needed to halt global climate emergency

    Profoundly troubling signs from human activities include sustained increases in both human and ruminant livestock populations, per capita meat production, [**]world gross domestic product….
    .

    * Still increasing by roughly 80 million people per year, or more than 200,000 per day, the world population must be stabilized—and, ideally, gradually reduced—within a framework that ensures social integrity

    Where’s Stalin when he’s needed?

  19. ‘We cannot price ourselves out of a climate crisis BECAUSE – China.’

    Until the Greentards talk openly about nuking China, burning it to the ground, and salting the remains, they are lying.

    The correct response to Extinction Rebellion is, “So you want to nuke China?”

  20. Dennis: I do agree with your points about the technical and political problems of the UK getting its power from the Sahara.

    The thing that most discourages me from even thinking about such nonsense is the politics. I’m sick and tired of all the ridiculous wars in the Middle East and North Africa, and our even more ridiculous involvement.

    If you totaled up the inevitable cost of the wars if the UK and the rest of Europe even attempted such a thing, it’s obvious that nukes and fracking are far simpler, cheaper and cost far less lives.

    A good natural experiment is the Algerian war. France lost the country and its oil at vast expense. Came the oil crisis, so France started building nukes instead of burning oil. The nukes are still generating power. In fact if the banksters and the eurocrats, no doubt bribed by OPEC, hadn’t stopped the Frogs paying for the nuclear program the way they paid for the Algerian war, by debasing the currency, all of France’s energy would now come from nukes and, I’d guess, cheap dirty German brown coal turned into oil by nuclear generated H2.

Leave a Reply

Name and email are required. Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.