The meaning of Cap and Trade

In the most recent thread on the warming issue, Bill Carpenter writes:

The proposed political remedies to this manufactured crisis, taken as a whole, amount to a government seizure of the atmosphere. The air that used to be free and open to all is being seized by bureaucrats and treated as government property that they can tax you for using. “Cap and trade” equals “license to breathe.”

To which I replied:

Absolutely. A minute of thought reveals Cap and Trade to be the most far reaching grab for control of human activity ever conceived, as well as a recipe for unlimited corruption and the massive transfer of wealth. Under Cap and Trade, all economic activity would revolve around the awarding and exchange of carbon credits. In this uber Atlas Shrugged-ian nightmare, government functionaries decide who gets enough carbon credits to function and who doesn’t. Friends of the regime or those who pay large enough bribes would get lots of carbon credits, many more than they need to operate their businesses, which they could then sell to non friends of the regime who are not so favored and who must have the credits in order to keep their businesses going. Nonwhites, non-Westerners, and women would get lots of carbon credits, which whites, Westerners, and men would have to buy from them.

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A. Zarkov writes:

Mr. Auster writes, “Nonwhites, non-Westerners, and women would get lots of carbon credits, which whites, Westerners, and men would have to buy from them.”

That’s what Hans Joachim Schellnhuber says who is director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, and top adviser to the German government on “Climate Protection.” In an interview with Der Spiegel International online, Schellnhuber says,

Humankind has to limit itself to emit only fixed amount of carbon into the atmosphere until 2050. The German Advisory Council on Global Change (WBGU) has conducted an audit to determine which countries should be allowed to emit how much carbon dioxide in order to remain within the two degree limit. The findings are sobering….

Because the industrialized nations have already exceeded their quotas if you take into account past emissions. To have a two-in-three chance of reaching that target, we can only emit 750 billion tons between now and 2050. For a three-in-four chance, we can only emit 660 billion tons. If you divide these emissions per person and compare them with the current output you see that Germany, the US and other industrialized nations have either already used up their permissible quota, or will do so within the next few years …

Our basic principle is that all humans have equal rights to the atmosphere. This is a basic right. This is also what German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh decided at a meeting in 2007. Why should a German be allowed to emit more CO2 into the atmosphere than someone from Bangladesh? No, we must divide the quota equally and fairly among all nations.

There you have it. The global warming alarmists intend to seize ownership of the earth’s atmosphere and charge you for the carbon you emit as they see fit. And what give them the right to take control of the very air you breath? That’s unclear to me—it looks as though they intend to just take it. It doesn’t matter that most people oppose such a move. This whole thing come across like some kind of science fiction novel of a future dystopia. Except that the future is now.

Ray G. writes:

As bad as Obamacare is, I actually fear this climate change nonsense more. It’s simply a way to spread the wealth and “level” all the nations and peoples of the earth, something Obama is very, very big on. He made a point of saying in the ‘08 campaign that he favors a global tax of some kind to relieve poverty. This is it by another name. The US is to be “de-fanged” as an industrial/military/economic power and brought down a few notches.

Obama seeks to destroy the US as a country of individuals, pursuing their own rational self interest, as the land of opportunity. This mentality has infected so many people in government, academia and media in this country and around the world.

Rick U. writes:

So, Cap and Trade is really just reparations for the Industrial Revolution? The West continues its suicide.

A. Zarkov writes:

The July 9-23, 2009 issue of Rolling Stone Magazine has an article by Matt Taibbi on Goldman Sachs and how it profits from economic bubbles. Starting on page 98 Taibbi writes about “Bubble #6”—Global Warming. He explains how Goldman Sachs will make a bundle. Here’s how that will work according to Taibbi. The government will keep lowering the “caps” creating a scarcity of carbon credits. This will create a new bubble as the value of credits shoot up. Traders will bid up the price in anticipation of further lowering of caps. Goldman Sachs has been lobbying for C & T for years. In 2005 when Henry Paulson was CEO of Goldman he authored a report on the bank’s environmental policy putting the bank solidly in the warmist camp. No surprise as Goldman is invested in wind solar power. It bought Horizon Wind Energy and other so-called “green enterprises.” It also owns a 10% stake in Chicago Climate Exchange where carbon credits will be traded. This is a partial list. Without the warming scare there is no C & T. Always follow the money to understand what’s happening. Anyone who understands some physics and finance knows the problems with wind and solar energy. The whole thing is a scam.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at December 10, 2009 11:32 AM | Send

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