Carbon Tax Causes Cannabilistic Infanticide

25 Apr

Chalk up the first big horror outcome for the carbon (dioxide) tax.  Evidence is growing that sustained public opposition to taxing the air we breathe can cause our self-appointed moral and intellectual betters to start eating their own children.

From today’s Sydney Morning Herald:

Why is there such a sharp and growing divide between the majority who oppose the carbon tax and the minority who openly treat the majority as idiots? …

The justification for this tax is that it will curb greenhouse emissions endangering the planet. It is an argument which covers a multitude of sins. Here are just some:

1. There is no mandate for the carbon tax. It was expressly singled out by Gillard during the last election as a no-go, which helped save her government.

2. The tax will have almost zero effect on global carbon dioxide emissions.

3. It is a tax on everything, as higher energy costs flow through the economy.

4. It is regressive, harming households and small businesses on tight budgets.

5. It is a massive exercise in tax churning.

6. It does not address the structural inefficiencies in the energy sector.

7. It is a prelude to a emissions trading scheme, a derivatives market.

8. Large-scale carbon trading is inherently vulnerable to fraud, manipulation and speculation, as seen in Europe.

9. It will introduce a new layer of complexity to the economy.

10. It ignores significant energy savings possible without a punitive tax.

11. The federal government has an abysmal record in delivering large-scale interventions.

12. Australia contributes about 1.5 per cent of global carbon emissions and any local measures will be irrelevant without a global carbon tax regime.

13. It will not introduce certainty to energy pricing as promised.

14. Solar and wind power generation are prohibitively expensive and cannot meet baseload power needs.

15. The tax represents a massive transfer of wealth and power to the bureaucratic class which benefits most from a new labyrinth of compliance and compulsion.

In short, a carbon chasm is emerging in Australia and when it is all boiled down, I think Sue Isles is right and Julia Gillard is wrong.

Damn straight.

Also from the Sydney Morning Herald recently, the government sales pitch for the carbon tax exposed and mocked:

You can tell everything you need to know about a product by the way it is sold. In advertising, a dog of a product is apparent from its unique selling proposition, or USP…

”One million people will be better off” is the USP with which the Minister for Climate Change, Greg Combet, hopes to persuade the public to buy his shiny new carbon tax.

I almost choked on my 100 per cent natural grain Wheaties. This must be a really crappy product.

There can be only one genuine way to sell the carbon tax, and that is by advertising the fact that it will prevent anthropogenic warming. It’s like Mortein. I buy it because I have a nasty problem that needs eradicating. Excessive CO2 emissions around your home? Stop them dead with the new carbon tax! Available at all good stores.

It’s instructive to think of how the GST was sold to a less than enthusiastic public. Basically, it was the castor oil strategy – this stuff is going to taste slightly unpleasant, but it’s going to do us all a power of (economic) good. And it worked. Arguably that is the only honest way of selling the carbon tax, too. Self-sacrifice for the greater good. In this case, of mankind.

Yet despite all the political shenanigans of the past few years and a massive teaser campaign for more than a decade (rising sea-levels, end of the world, Al Gore) “the greater good” is not the USP with which the government has chosen to sell this product.

Which must mean, to put it bluntly, that the product doesn’t work.

Here’s what happened behind the scenes. The advertising agency researched what a carbon tax might mean to people. To do so, they assembled groups of consumers – mums and dads, single parents, uni students, anyone who was prepared to give up an evening for $50 and some free food – and stuck them in specially designed research rooms where their every utterance was observed, taped and scrutinised. The topic was climate change. To a man and woman – apart from one or two sceptics – the groups agreed ”something must be done”. The polite, well-spoken researcher then introduced the concept of a carbon tax. The focus groups were wary, but accepted the idea so long as it solved the problem of global warming. Sandwiches and pizza were handed around. The researcher then showed the groups numerous concepts that attempted to distil the idea that the carbon tax could not fix the problem in and of itself, but rather, was a pre-emptive action that would require many other changes throughout the world over which Australia has no control before any useful reduction in carbon emissions could or might occur.

Things started to get a little sticky. When, via a detailed analysis and discussion of various phrases and catchwords the focus groups cottoned on to the fact that the tax was not going to do what they hoped for, they became angry. And the advertising dudes, watching them from behind a one-way mirror, became nervous. At this point, the researcher, her hands sweating slightly, popped some different boards under the noses of the focus groups. These new concepts and phrases introduced the idea that some people, due to the structure of the rebates, would find themselves better off under the new tax. And suddenly the conversations took a dramatic turn. The focus groups became pacified. Heads started nodding. Greed kicked in.

Meanwhile, behind the one-way mirror, the advertising folk and government consultants heaved a sigh of relief. Now they had found their USP, all they needed was a catchy phrase and the job was done.

One million people will be better off. You can’t get any catchier than that.

The avowedly warmist Sydney Morning Herald beginning to turn on its own children?

Perhaps now is a good time for someone to start a new list, similar to this one detailing all the publicly alleged effects of global warming.  You might wish to call this new list, “UCACA – Unintended Consequences of ‘Action on Climate’ Advocacy”.

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