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Carbon dividends are the answer

Summary:
“People say economists don't agree on anything”, muses Dr. Erik Brynjolfsson, “but here's one thing we do agree on: carbon dividends”. Dr. Brynjolfsson’s statement came in response to a plan that was signed by more than 3,500 economists, the largest number of economists to endorse any policy of any kind in all of U.S. history. This included 27 Nobel Prize winners and all 4 living past federal reserve chairs (again, record breaking numbers.)Plans of this ilk offer to implement a tax on carbon that gradually climbs up over time. The problem with many of these sorts of taxes is that they are often regressive, and aggressively so. Energy providers will let their consumers shoulder the burden, with higher prices needed to cover for their losses. This creates feelings of resentment, opening the

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“People say economists don't agree on anything”, muses Dr. Erik Brynjolfsson, “but here's one thing we do agree on: carbon dividends”. Dr. Brynjolfsson’s statement came in response to a plan that was signed by more than 3,500 economists, the largest number of economists to endorse any policy of any kind in all of U.S. history. This included 27 Nobel Prize winners and all 4 living past federal reserve chairs (again, record breaking numbers.)

Plans of this ilk offer to implement a tax on carbon that gradually climbs up over time. The problem with many of these sorts of taxes is that they are often regressive, and aggressively so. Energy providers will let their consumers shoulder the burden, with higher prices needed to cover for their losses. This creates feelings of resentment, opening the door for populist demagogues to swoop in and “save the day”.

Never fear. This flaw is easily fixable. No one will feel the need to rally through the streets dressed as traffic wardens if the government were to give back to him or her the revenue amounted by the tax. People won’t complain about soaring higher energy bills if their pay check is soaring at a proportional rate.  

How, then, should this money be handed out in a manner that bypasses the law of unintended consequences? A Universal Basic Income, perhaps. Or, better yet, a Milton Freidman-style Negative Income Tax (as I have advocated in past writing).

Carbon dividends aren’t magic bullets, but they may well be the free world’s best way to appease the likes of Greta Thunberg whilst not sacrificing the economic framework that, quite literally, gave her the vaccine-filled, polio-free childhood that the despicable globalist elite supposedly stole from her.

Amos Wollen is the winner of the under-18 category in our Young Writer on Liberty 2020 competition.

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