Today’s idiocy

After that, please provide all your explanations for preventing carbon taxes being regressive?

There are good reasons for thinking you are very wrong

So, tell me who is funding you to be so wrong in that case?

One answer is that a bit of regressivity in order to save the planet doesn’t sound so bad. We are, after all, insisting that everyone should travel less, everyone should eat less meat and so on. This will impact more upon those with lower incomes because they start out by doing less of these things.

Another is that the P³ already claims that certain parts of the tax system are regressive. VAT for example. Or employees’ national insurance – it stops at about the income (sorry, falls significantly in rate) that income tax increases. Or NI isn’t paid upon capital incomes, only richer folks have capital incomes, the poorer rely upon labour incomes. Or council tax is regressive as it doesn’t have enough higher bands. All of these are things that the P³ has already told us.

There is no part of the pro-carbon tax argument which insists that it must be used to raise hypothecated revenue. The aim is to change the price structure, not revenue raising. Thus the revenue goes into the general pot – and we can reduce some other revenue raiser to balance it. The general proposal – Nordhaus, Stern, damn near every economist on the planet – is for a revenue neutral carbon tax after all. Hell, if you decide to sting carbon enough it might even be worth setting up a dividend scheme, make that per capita and that’s hugely progressive.

So, if we’ve already got regressive taxes we can institute another one and balance by reducing one of those extant. Add a carbon tax, reduce the rate of VAT. Or pay a dividend. Or reduce the base level of council tax. Or reduce employees’ NI. Actually, Gordon Brown reduce employers’ NI when he brought in the landfill tax – same idea.

All of this is widely explored in the literature and well known.

It’s not that the P³ doesn’t know it either. Here it’s not ignorance driving the screeching, it’s self-interest. Who would fund sustainable cost accounting if we already knew the solution?

Sometimes public choice economics is just too easypeasy.

7 thoughts on “Today’s idiocy”

  1. Oh sod it. Was gonna write a load of stuff about the futility of it all, but down hree below the line we are all in agreement about that.

  2. We are, after all, insisting that everyone should travel less, everyone should eat less meat and so on.

    Will we get to wear funny hats like the original Helots did or nah?

  3. The fuckers can “insist” on what they like. Fuck them and we will do whatever is needed to stop their eco-shite.

    Anyone not wanting to experience the depths like whaleshit might find it wise to join in the fightback. They have very nasty plans for us–I suggest we table some even nastier ones for them.

    Taking the Globo elites cash might equal $2.5 trillion I’ve read. Does anyone have any other ideas to break and punish our wannabe masters. Esp now its clear we get them or they get us.

  4. Actually, Gordon Brown reduce employers’ NI when he brought in the landfill tax – same idea.

    And how did that idea work out? Surprise spoiler alert: both went up!
    .

    Should-know-better ideologue 1:
    There is no part of the pro-carbon tax argument which insists that it must be used to raise hypothecated revenue. The aim is to change the price structure, not revenue raising.

    Should-know-better ideologue 2:
    There is no part of the pro-socialism argument which insists that it must be used to create an all powerful state. The aim is bunnies and unicorns, not a boot in your face forever.

  5. ‘We are, after all, insisting that everyone should travel less, everyone should eat less meat and so on.’

    The covid lockdowns were supposed to be that way in Queensland.

    I’ll let you guess if that’s really the way it is.

  6. Taxes intended to manipulate people’s behaviour will always tend to be regressive. This is because such a tax forces poor people to change, since they don’t have enough money to pay the tax; it provides string pressure on wealthier people, who could pay the tax but are reluctant to; while it has little effect on the rich, who probably don’t even know the prices they are paying.

    If you want to reduce flights, for example, the poorest can no longer afford them, those in the middle fly less because they see it as an expensive luxury, and the rich don’t even notice that their private jet now costs an extra $1000 per flight.

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