The costs of carbon legislation [update 2]
Let’s see how many of Bob Murphy’s propositions you can agree with:
The global-warming debate has now been completely politicized, and partisans on both sides have often injected hidden values masquerading as scientific facts. I understand that even some libertarians believe the underlying science proves that "business as usual" will mean a huge form of aggression on the property rights of some of the world's most vulnerable people.
Even so, I think that the real threat to humanity comes from governments growing ever more powerful in the name of fighting climate change. .
Whether you are a "denier" or whether you think carbon dioxide emissions need to be sharply reduced very quickly, you should be extremely skeptical of the process now unfolding in Washington [and in Wellington]. This isn't about saving the planet; it's about money and power.
It usually is, isn’t it.
I won't ask if they think [people] are this stupid, since they obviously do. Leaving aside the question of whether carbon needs to be capped, since that has nothing to do with whether doing so "creates jobs" on net, is there a non-drone, non-bought-and-paid-for human being on this earth who thinks throwing obstacles in the path of production "creates jobs" in a non-trivial sense? Couldn't I, with equal justification, say that forcing every business to destroy its roof and then build a new one out of clay, or chopping off every third worker's right hand, would create an analogous series of jobs?
Moral of the story? The problem is not about creating jobs, as George Reisman tells Paul Krugman it’s about creating productive jobs at prices employers can afford.
UPDATE 2: Christopher Brooker reckons the carbon tax/ emissions trading scams are going to be "the world's biggest ever bill."