Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Cap and Trade = 15% Income Tax Hike

so says the Obama administration, it turns out.

Remember Cap and Trade? The House passed this controversial climate change bill H.R. 2454 (what isn't controversial these days?) back in June, with an extremely close vote (219-212).

Declan McCullagh of CBS News, who has recently written probing articles on health care "reform" and cyberspace regulation, reports that Cap and Trade would cost families $1761 a year, equivalent of 15% increase in personal income tax.

The information comes from the previously undisclosed documents by the Obama administration and Treasury, which were obtained under the Freedom of Information Act by the Competitive Enterprise Institute and released on Tuesday, according to McCullagh.

Obama Admin: Cap And Trade Could Cost Families $1,761 A Year
(Declan McCullagh, 9/15/09 CBS News)

"The Obama administration has privately concluded that a cap and trade law would cost American taxpayers up to $200 billion a year, the equivalent of hiking personal income taxes by about 15 percent.

"A previously unreleased analysis prepared by the U.S. Department of Treasury says the total in new taxes would be between $100 billion to $200 billion a year. At the upper end of the administration's estimate, the cost per American household would be an extra $1,761 a year.

"A second memorandum, which was prepared for Obama's transition team after the November election, says this about climate change policies: "Economic costs will likely be on the order of 1 percent of GDP, making them equal in scale to all existing environmental regulation." "

The article has a link to the documents obtained under FOIA, which I link here also.

GOP's estimate is about $3100 per family a year, or $366 billion a year. Democrats' number is $800 per family, or less than $100 billion a year. The Heritage Foundation says it will be $1500 per family a year by 2035.

Considering the government's track record in containing costs, we could safely jettison the lowest estimate.

""Heritage is saying publicly what the administration is saying to itself privately," says Christopher Horner, a senior fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute who filed the FOIA request. "It's nice to see they're not spinning each other behind closed doors."

""They're not telling you the cost -- they're not telling you the benefit," says Horner, who wrote the Politically Incorrect Guide to Global Warming. "If they don't tell you the cost, and they don't tell you the benefit, what are they telling you? They're just talking about global salvation.""

Wealth distribution within the U.S., and from the U.S. to the rest of the world, particularly poorer countries. But the one who is set to gain most is the government: 15% more tax revenue, not from the polluting industries who will get numerous subsidies, but from the consumers, rich and not so rich alike.

"Because personal income tax revenues bring in around $1.37 trillion a year, a $200 billion additional tax would be the equivalent of a 15 percent increase a year. A $100 billion additional tax would represent a 7 or 8 percent increase a year."

(But watch out, opponents of cap and trade, health care, or anything that's been proposed. According to the former president Jimmy Carter and numerous other pundits (the article linked was written by a neo-conservative), it seems you are racist and you don't even know it if you dare oppose President Obama's policies. To me as a non-native here, it is totally incomprehensible, though I've been trying to understand the rationale.)


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