by Samuelson is well worth reading (all his pieces are worth reading):
We'll have to discard the old adage "Everyone talks about the weather, but no one does anything about it." It is inoperative in this era of global warming, because the whole point of controlling greenhouse gas emissions is to do something about the weather. This promises to be hard and perhaps futile, but there are good and bad ways of attempting it. One of the bad ways is cap-and-trade. Unfortunately, it's the darling of environmental groups and their political allies.
The chief political virtue of cap-and-trade -- a complex scheme to reduce greenhouse gases -- is its complexity. This allows its environmental supporters to shape public perceptions in essentially deceptive ways. Cap-and-trade would act as a tax, but it's not described as a tax. It would regulate economic activity, but it's promoted as a "free market" mechanism. Finally, it would trigger a tidal wave of influence-peddling, as lobbyists scrambled to exploit the system for different industries and localities. This would undermine whatever abstract advantages the system has. . . .
Labels: Environment, GlobalWarming