Taxing Insanity subject logo: BUSINESS
Posted by: badanov

One of the first reactions I saw in comments in blogs in reaction to rising gas prices or any other issue having to do with petroleum, is for a call for a either a higher tariff on imported crude oil or to raise the federal gas tax. This was in 2004 and was just when crude oil was starting its rise to last summer's levels.

Folks who call for increasing taxes on everyone as a means of federal policy seem to argue that transferring the money raised with taxes will enable the federal government to do better things with it than the market itself does; things such as subsiding "alternative fuels."( a byword for a product that wouldn't last two weeks in a free market.)

The argument seems to be that since the federal government is a democratic institution, its human elements really do know better how to deal with macro economic policy issues than any one person or group of people.

Which may be true, except for the fact the federal government is also a political entity, whereby politics alone, not rational economics, determine what economic and tax policy will be. Not the best most rational approach, but the politically most expedient approach drives decisions regarding the federal treasury.

The above referenced article is a criticism of an absurd Washington Post editorial which calls for an increase in federal fuel taxes as economic policy to stop a supposed return to wasteful personal spending on lower gas mileage vehicles. The author rather weakly denigrates the Posts position by pointing out those elites will not be happy until we proles are all driving Smart cars.

My argument against a federal gas tax is where is the logic in transferring billions more dollars to the US Treasury? Even if it is for a noble purpose ( and I would argue the environmental "concerns" are less about our better senses and more about a socialist agenda ) why does it benefit us in transferring more hard earned private wealth to an entity no one currently trusts to even resolve a problem it was supposed to regulate in the first place?

Until the good socialists at the Washington Post can answer that, or at least the current new owners of the US legislative branch can answer it, I would suggest we push to lower the federal gas tax to one penny a gallon ( or less ) until we do have a ration explanation as to why raising taxes will benefit anyone but the government.

If you have something to add, Fire Away!

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