Energy

Springtime for Stupid Ideas

The candidates' pathetic energy policies

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In the realm of energy policy, there are a great many bad ideas and a very few good ones. The usual practice of presidential candidates is to 1) sift through all these proposals, 2) separate the wheat from the chaff, and 3) keep the chaff.

This year, the two parties are competing to show who is most eager to discard sound economics and long-term prudence in favor of appeasing aggrieved motorists. Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton are pandering with a proposal to punish oil companies with a windfall profits tax. John McCain has targeted the same group by urging a federal gas tax holiday from Memorial Day to Labor Day.

What motivates them is high pump prices, which are at odds with the popular view of cheap gasoline as a national birthright. One common defect of the candidates' measures, though, is that they would not actually reduce prices.

The Democratic option rests on the unshakable belief that Big Oil is guilty of chronic profiteering at public expense. In fact, from 1987 through 2006, oil and gas companies did worse than other industrial companies on return on investment in all but four years.

When the price of gasoline is high, drivers notice. But when it's low, as it has been for most of the period since 1982, everyone takes it for granted.

No idea can be definitively judged until it has been tried, which makes the Obama-Clinton approach particularly hard to defend. Congress, you see, enacted a windfall profits tax on oil back during the Carter administration. You would think Democrats would not want to remind voters of that president or embrace his errors, but you would be wrong.

By almost any standard, the last windfall profits tax was self-defeating. According to a 2006 study by the Congressional Research Service, it generated less than one-fourth of the revenues that were expected. Worse yet, it reduced domestic oil production by as much as 8 percent.

Obama has yet to provide details of his plan. Under Clinton's version, if a company's profits rose above a specified level, the government would take 50 percent of the "windfall"—in addition to what it reaps from the existing corporate income tax, which tops out at 35 percent.

The expropriation would deter investment in exploration and drilling by reducing the potential payoff. It would depress the supply of oil over the long run, which would push prices up, not down. Punishing Big Oil would mean hurting ourselves.

McCain avoids this error in favor of a different one. He wants to stop collecting federal gas taxes for three months, which he says "will be an immediate economic stimulus—taking a few dollars off the price of a tank of gas." It sounds like a simple, sure remedy, and it is simple and sure. It's just not a remedy.

As energy analyst Jerry Taylor of the Cato Institute points out, prices are now at the level required to balance supply and demand. Cut prices by the amount of the gas tax, and consumption will rise, pushing prices back up. So drivers would get no holiday, and the economy would get no stimulus.

About the only effect would be to "transfer money from the federal government to the oil companies," says Taylor. If the oil companies don't deserve a windfall profits tax, neither do they deserve an additional windfall. The gas tax hiatus would also enlarge the federal deficit, since McCain would take general revenues to make up the loss to the highway trust fund—and at the moment, there aren't any extra revenues waiting to be spent.

Besides proposing useless or damaging ideas, the candidates have also passed up the single best idea for energy policy: a carbon tax that would curb use of fuels that release greenhouse gases, while encouraging development of clean alternatives. Better yet would be a carbon tax whose revenues go to cut payroll taxes for Social Security and Medicare, rewarding work without raising the deficit.

It's a win-win concept with wide support among economists, but almost none among politicians. That's the nature of energy policy in an election year: Any bad idea may be adopted, while the good ones remain orphans.

COPYRIGHT 2008 CREATORS SYNDICATE, INC.

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  1. “why the presidential candidates are offering such ridiculous solutions.”

    Because with this, it’s not “For the Children”. It’s “For the Votes”, which trumps “For the Children”.

    Americans are stupid.

    CB

  2. People don’t know econ 101, the sky is blue, one plus one equals two, etc.

  3. Is there an election coming up?
    “Forty acres and a mule.” “And a mule?”
    “And a mule. We’re your friends and we want you and your friends to vote for us.”

  4. Because they’re interested in solving/exploiting the political problems posed by the energy situation, not in solving the energy situation itself.

  5. “Besides proposing useless or damaging ideas, the candidates have also passed up the single best idea for energy policy: a carbon tax that would curb use of fuels that release greenhouse gases, while encouraging development of clean alternatives. Better yet would be a carbon tax whose revenues go to cut payroll taxes for Social Security and Medicare, rewarding work without raising the deficit.”

    Somehow, I don’t think more taxes-particularly regressive taxes on one activity to fund other services-is anywhere near the best idea. Wait, actually, I think that’s the worst idea of the bunch. Seriously.

    We need to dismantle the Federal Highway Admin., get rid of the federal gas tax entirely, and let states charge their own taxes. Whoever gets the best compromise between well cared-for roads and low taxes wins.

  6. I have to say I was pretty irritated when they both talked about the windfall profits tax. What they *should* have been talking about was ending tax and direct subsidies to companies, and instead they’re essentially talking about penalizing businesses for doing well.

    But that pales in comparison to how stupid, stupid, stupid McCain’s gas tax holiday is.

  7. WRT the windfall tax, how is increasing the tax on a commodity supposed to reduce it’s. price?

    Oil companies make a lot in absolute terms because they are large companies. To be fair you need to look at margins, in which case they are healthy but not “excessive”. For example, compare the profit margin of Exxon to Microsoft:

    http://finance.yahoo.com/q/ks?s=XOM

    http://finance.yahoo.com/q/ks?s=msft

    Oil companies are public corporations, so, most people whether they realize it or not are owners of oil companies through their mutual funds, 401K, pension, IRAs etc. So they are in effect punishing their own net worth.

  8. As candidates for president of the Colonies, we have a Cylon (McCain), Gaius Baltar (Obama), and I guess Hillary is a more condescending, shrill, and heavy-handed version of Laura Roslin.

    Is it any wonder everything they propose is stupid?

  9. so cosmotarians are now fully behind a carbon tax? i guess everyone does love big government.

  10. At least Obama (and I believe Hillary as well) do have a auction-only cap and trade carbon plan, which economists consider to be equivalent to a carbon tax.

  11. as a sitting board of Director for big Oil I commend you for your great article Steve Chapman. First you argue against taxing big oil, I happen to agree. Even though most the country thinks the trillion dollar war is primarily to defend our property claims in the mid-east…oil companies should not have to pay for this defense.

    Most importantly, Chapman, you don’t make any real principled arguments against taxes or excessive taxes…you actually promote the taxation of the carbon poison. This will effectively replicate the salt taxes my grandpa helped put on the Indian peasants…we are always looking for taxes that the massess cannot avoid and your help in promoting these ideas are geatly appreciated. If Big Oil is to maintain it’s position as one of the highest market cap companies in the world, we need to have legislation passed that favors our pre-positioned business plan and carbon cap and trade programs or “carbon flat taxes” fit our plans perfectly. We can all agree that the wild west dog eat dog world of unfettered competition is too innefficient and we must promote the third way of corporate and government cooperation. When we work together to increase taxes on those who are the edge of survival we can seperate the wheat from the chaff and teach the bottom 5.5 billion peasants on the planet that they must submit to our authority.

  12. Adrian,
    yes we are behind the carbon tax! To be otherwise would be unscientific. Even the great conservative thinkers like George Bush and John McCain are now in favor of cap and trade plans. It is the free-market solution after all.

    What are you on the Weigel scale? I’m thinking you are either a class 2 idiot or a class 4 idiot(freak). Anyone who is a denier falls into the class4 freak idiot category…however your knowledge of the term cosmo and your unscientificness means that you could be one of the faithful(class 2 idiots).

  13. Overlord, I’d get behind it if we put the UN in charge of enforcing it. Can you make that happen?

  14. Brandon,
    You are clearly a class 2 idiot on the Weigel Idiot classification system. Your a rigid believer in the dogmatic anti-tax mythology some of the Paleos are preaching. I bet you sit around with Ron Paul bumper stickers on your forehead, cursing minority groups, wearing a wifebeater and yelling at your kids to bring you another can of Natty Light.

  15. Adrian,
    I sense sarcasm on your part, I’m working on it, the backwards rednecks in our country are going to have to realize we need to work together with the international community to solve some of our huge impending problems. If that means submitting some of congresses legislative and taxing authority to a truly international group of the leading experts in the world then we need to need to see that happen.

    I was in a meeting with Richard Haas, Steve Chapman and Ted Turner last week and it became clear that the ice caps are melting at a accelerating speed, if we can’t get some global carbon agreements in place soon then we are going to be past the point of no return all polar bears will be dead by the end of this decade and most coastal cities will not exist by 2020.

  16. As candidates for president of the Colonies, we have a Cylon (McCain), Gaius Baltar (Obama), and I guess Hillary is a more condescending, shrill, and heavy-handed version of Laura Roslin.

    LOL, that’s how he got his eye back! I dunno about *more* heavy-handed than Roslin; she hasn’t shoved anyone out any airlocks, so far as I am aware.

    And Baltar doesn’t seem to fit for Obama. I really can’t come up with a good analog, but I know the guy who accidentally killed billions of people and then was put on trial for treason isn’t a good one. The personalities don’t even fit.

    Maybe Apollo? Young, idealistic, slightly bitter.

    Is it any wonder everything they propose is stupid?

    It’s called pandering; I sincerely doubt that any actual president would go through on a gas tax holiday considering the condition of the highway fund. I’m slightly less sanguine about the chances of a stupid windfall tax being passed, though that would be an order of magnitude less damaging (if more unfair and mean-spirited). They just want people to know that they *care* that pump prices have been going up, and that they’ll *do something* about it.

  17. Why does carbon get all the hate? Why not tax oxygen, silicon or my personal least favorite element – neon?

  18. What America truly needs is a new way to put food on the table of tax accountants. A windfall tax will stimulate a feeding frenzy of lobbyists searching for ways to redefine and reclassify revenues in order to shield them from the new tax. Talk about stimulating!

    How much money has Hillary gotten from Ernst & Young (or whatever the hell they are calling themselves, now)?

  19. I dunno about *more* heavy-handed than Roslin; she hasn’t shoved anyone out any airlocks, so far as I am aware.

    Vince. Foster. Dude.

    And Baltar doesn’t seem to fit for Obama.

    If you ignore the betrayal of humanity and treason trial, his newfound cult of personality and savior status–while actually being a self-absorbed asshole–works quite nicely. It’s really the best match if you look at it that way.

  20. Why does carbon get all the hate? Why not tax oxygen, silicon or my personal least favorite element – neon?

    We need a tax on on Praseodymium.

  21. Don’t forget molybdenum!

  22. Episiarch,

    BSG is running new episodes now, right? They’ve been so screwed up with scheduling that I have no idea what I’ve missed, what I’m missing, or what’s going on in the first place.

  23. The USA was having trouble, what a sad sad story/
    Needed a new leader to restore her former glory!/
    Where, or where was he?/
    Or maybe they need a she?/
    We looked around, and then we found/
    A policy bad as can be!/
    And now it’s… punitive taxes for any success!/
    No taxes on oil or gas!/
    We’re marching to a FASTER pace!/
    Trying to screw the HUMAN race!

  24. I’m not much into Vince Foster murder conspiracies.

    If you ignore the betrayal of humanity and treason trial, his newfound cult of personality and savior status–while actually being a self-absorbed asshole–works quite nicely. It’s really the best match if you look at it that way.

    Although, if we’re playing it that way, Baltar seems (since becoming a cult leader) to become less of a self-absorbed douchebag than previously. His two moments of sincerity were when he walked in and saw that people were worshiping him and said, in essence, “that’s crazy stupid”, and later on when he offered himself as a bona fide sacrifice for a kid he’d barely met.

    Either way, the cult of personality stuff is more the fault of the cult (in both cases) than its putative leader. I don’t much blame Ron Paul for some of his more Paultarded supporters, for a relevant contemporary example.

  25. Pro libertate –

    Go to Hulu. They’ve got all the episodes so far this season.

  26. Scott66,
    Interesting you ask this. Our most limiting critereia for picking things to tax is to find stuff that EVERYONE needs to do survive. Sodium Chloride was a classic example, but we couldn’t do salt again…it is too easy to make from sea water. The Gandhi movie was a virtual how-to guide for potential tax protestors of a salt tax. Food taxes were considered, but it seems too mean and people can potentially grow their own. There are too many disparate sources of food and water and people just have a general sense that taxing such things is unjust, this makes it hard to enforce.

    A truly good tax has to have a myth behind it that makes people think they should pay it. The most effective tax over the last 2000 years was the tithe…”voluntarily” give 10% of your gross income(before food, housing education, medicine etc) to the ruling elite or have your soul burn in hell. This mythology was taught to the peasants from brith and it was extremely efective, very very low enforcement costs accrued, until the competition forced us to start making bigger and prettier cathedrals to help create a better version of the myth than the next guy. When Martin Luther started his insurgent attacks on our people’s freedoms it was the first blow to our myth and as people came not to believe our myth as well our tithing tax became less effective.

    With this in mind we have carefully constructed a myth that carbon(which every human expels every second) is a sinful poisionous attack on all that is holy(GAIA). We are educating your kids about this from birth. The myth is a neccesary pre-cursor to any good tax and this takes serious time, we can’t willy nilly decide to substitute neon for C02. When you understand this framework you can see why substituting neon for carbon is silly for many other reasons as well, you need to repeat 1st grade of Dr evil school.

  27. I’m not much into Vince Foster murder conspiracies.

    That’s good, because I was joking and mocking the conspiracy theorists. It’s hard to be sarcastic on the Intarwebs.

    They’ve been so screwed up with scheduling that I have no idea what I’ve missed, what I’m missing, or what’s going on in the first place.

    There have been two (?) new episodes the last two weeks. TiVo the reruns SciFi usually runs or use Hulu as LMNOP suggested.

    His two moments of sincerity were when he walked in and saw that people were worshiping him and said, in essence, “that’s crazy stupid”, and later on when he offered himself as a bona fide sacrifice for a kid he’d barely met.

    Yeah, I don’t know. Baltar has been a genius at melding real sincerity with his utter selfishness in a way that actually gets people to believe in him. It’s why he’s such a great character.

  28. You can tell from the course of the series that Lee Adama was supposed to be the central character, but Baltar took over with his evil charm.

    Kind of like how WKRP was originally supposed to be about Andy.

  29. Thanks for the explanation CO. I just am not devious enough to rise far in Virtucon. I do tell everyone that the UN ought to be running the internet – if that counts for anything.

  30. Yeah, I don’t know. Baltar has been a genius at melding real sincerity with his utter selfishness in a way that actually gets people to believe in him. It’s why he’s such a great character.

    Oh, pro lib, *spoiler alert*

    I agree. There was one moment in the last episode where my fiancee and I turned toward each other and said, “damn, what a smooth operator”. It was during that sex scene where the cylon chick was crying (“I always cry during sex”), and he lays that “it’s just because you are blessed with an abundance of feeling” line on her.

    I mean, seriously, who could come up with a line like that on-the-fly in such a situation?

  31. Ha ha, yeah, that was great. Absolut? Baltar.

  32. Baltar’s like the Newton of sleazy men.

  33. I agree. If the Federal government and society want to encourage certain behaviors that they consider “good” and discourage behaviors that they consider “bad”, the best way to do this is to make the bad behavior more expensive. If wasting fuel is bad, then making it more expensive is certainly a good way to encourage conservation, increased efficiency and generation of power form other sources (in this case non-carbon sources). The revenue generated could be used to fund research into these sources, fund government programs that people actually want (Not wastefull boodoggles like biofuels), etc. The problem is that people get so bent out of shape when they see high prices at the pump and want to blame others, that they don’t realize that it’s pretty much a supply and demand game, and that the more that they use, the higher the price per gallon goes. You want to see prices drop quickly? Get rid of your SUV and get something smaller. Not only will you have to spend less when you fill up, the decrase in demand will reduce the price per gallon. Perhaps states should charge vehicle registration renual fees based on estimated miles per gallon as well as the carbon tax.

  34. Of course, with a carbon tax, nuclear power would become much more effective that any current source of power (including wind, solar and especially bio fuels) so the tax would greatly encourage nuclear development — something the Greens would cringe at, but something which is necessary as fossil fuel supplies decrease. Development of hydrogen fuels and fueling systems with hydrogen derived from nuclear power would also become much more attractive. This, of course, has been the direction of energy evolution over the past 500 years anyway. From wood, to coal, to oil, to gas to nuclear and hydrogen, each step has involved going from a fuel with a higher to a lower carbon content — and ultimately to zero. This represents an increase in efficiency and technical expertise which will hopefully continue into the future, if allowed to develope.

  35. Perhaps states should charge vehicle registration renual fees based on estimated miles per gallon as well as the carbon tax.

    Now why did you have to go and say that…

    Environmentalists and progressives harangue free market types on this issue over and over until finally the free market types relent and say, “Okay, okay, we’ll tolerate a carbon tax if only to constrain in a visible way the effects on markets and to preclude the plethora of particular market distorting mandates and subsidies that find their way into the debate.”

    But, no, taxing carbon at it’s fair social cost — or even higher — is not enough. The social engineers must have more control…

  36. If the Federal government and society want to encourage certain behaviors that they consider “good” and discourage behaviors that they consider “bad” . . .

    they should be flogged from office with a horsewhip?

  37. Uh, are we sure that a carbon tax is the best idea? Wouldn’t the best idea be to liberalize the markets that are the most polluting – transportation and energy production? Without subsidies for the roads (massive – you’re crazy if you think that puny gas tax covers the cost of all road/highway building/maintenance; not to mention the police, who spend about 40% of their time on road-related issues) and laws punishing high-density development (zoning laws and mandatory parking spot laws), would we really be using so much gasoline and carbon? Suburbs are inefficient when it comes to energy use, and energy use costs money. Or at least it would, if the government didn’t constantly subsidize it. Let’s remove the subsidies before we talk about additional taxes.

  38. Cut prices by the amount of the gas tax, and consumption will rise, pushing prices back up. So drivers would get no holiday, and the economy would get no stimulus.

    OK, this statement totally flunks any test of economics. If you cut the tax on gasoline, the price per gallon will drop by the amount of the cut. Motorists will respond to the lower price per gallon by driving somewhat more, and while that would drive the price up somewhat, it would NOT drive the price up to anywhere near the level prior to the tax cut.

    If you believe the above statement, then the converse should be true — if you increased the gas tax by, say, $1 a gallon, people would drive less and that would drive prices down to the pre-tax increase level. That, of course, is obviously wrong.

    Add into that the fact that gasoline can be shipped across borders, and thus the price of a gallon of crude reflects worldwide supply and demand, and the price bump from increased domestic consumption goes down even more.

    Basically, the two Democrats are proposing to indirectly raise the price of gas in the name of “fairness” via the windfall profits tax, while the Republican frontrunner is proposing to increase the budget deficit via yet another tax cut not matched with any offsetting spending cuts, thus further fueling inflation and decreasing the value of the dollar versus other currencies.

  39. Why would I want a “carbon tax” when carbon dioxide isn’t a pollutant and global warming is a fraud?

  40. Let’s remove the subsidies before we talk about additional taxes.

    I agree wholeheartedly. But I don’t think ending the subsidies that encourage road use and suburban development will have nearly the effect on the landscape you seem to think.

    People pay a lot to live in suburbs. They’d pay more if that’s what the unsubsidized market dictated.

  41. People pay a lot to live in suburbs. They’d pay more if that’s what the unsubsidized market dictated.

    Do they? Housing is generally cheaper in the suburbs than in the city.

    But I don’t think ending the subsidies that encourage road use and suburban development will have nearly the effect on the landscape you seem to think.

    Instituting them in the first place sure did. Around the turn of the century, the vaaaaast majority of urban commuting was done with private mass transit. NYC’s subways were built with private dollars, as were the now-mostly-gone streetcar lines in San Francisco. Nowadays, with the exception of airlines and intercity bus lines (both of which benefit from large subsidies), there is no such thing as private mass transit. People don’t even bother to distinguish between mass transit and public transit. Around the turn of the century, it seems obvious (at least to me) that it was government that did in the private mass transit industry. So, while it’s possible that the government bet on the car at a time when it wasn’t economically viable without regulations and subsidies and it turns out they actually picked the economic winner (which is impossible to say now given the massive amounts of regulations and subsidies supporting the status quo), this seems unlikely. If it were true, I might have to renounce my libertarianism and admit that the government can pick winners better than the market.

  42. If you cut the tax on gasoline, the price per gallon will drop by the amount of the cut. Motorists will respond to the lower price per gallon by driving somewhat more, and while that would drive the price up somewhat, it would NOT drive the price up to anywhere near the level prior to the tax cut.

    There is not enough gasoline to sell it for less than its current price. If there were, then the price would be coming down now. If the gas tax goes on a three month holiday, anyone who tries to pass the savings to the consumer will run out of gasoline.

    If the tax were simply ended, then the savings would eventually go to the consumer as the producers increased supply to fight for the long-run 18 cents per gallon surplus. But three months is not enough time for an increase in supply at either the wellhead or the refinery.

  43. MikeP — Gasoline use, in the short term at least, has a small elastic and a large inelastic component. People who own a car will drive the bulk of their current miles regardless of marginal fluctuations in the price of a gallon of gas — they need to get to work, go to the store and buy food, etc. The supply and price of gasoline reflect current consumption levels. The oil refiners can ramp up production in the short term for a price, and the longer notice they have, the less the price premium for ramping up production. In any event, the premium for ramping up production is considerably less than the amount the price of a gallon would drop due to the drop in taxes — unless you are postulating that the price of a gallon of gas bears no relationship whatsoever to the taxes levied on it, which is clearly not in accordance with reality. Seriously — do you expect us to believe that the Democrats’ proposed windfall profits tax wouldn’t raise the price of a gallon of gas?

    Finally, if gasoline gets cheaper, there is some immediate increase in consumption from optional vacation trips, etc., but the long-term rise in gas consumption in response is driven by a great extent by the choices in vehicles being purchased. If gas is cheap enough for long enough, people start buying larger cars with more powerful, less fuel-efficient engines (or, more precisely, research gains in overall engine efficiency get cancelled out by people opting for more powerful engines), but there is a delay as the existing vehicle fleet gets phased out over the average 10-12 year lifespan of the average car in the fleet.

  44. The transportation infrastructure itself will ultimately have to change so that it is more efficient, whether we are using fossil fuels or not, whether it is “carbon free” or not. All of this alternative fuel bullshit is going no where. The way the infrastructure has developed ever since the post war era is the root of any energy problems now. Gasoline prices are right where they should be, as determined by the market. Letting the market determine the prices is the best way to encourage any kind of progress, which will probably just mean people pay more attention to what kind of commute they will have when they pick a place to live, with new infrastructure being built accordingly.

  45. People who own a car will drive the bulk of their current miles regardless of marginal fluctuations in the price of a gallon of gas — they need to get to work, go to the store and buy food, etc.

    The person next to me at the gas station yesterday put a whopping $6 of gas in her tank. Don’t confuse the average consumer with the marginal consumer.

    The oil refiners can ramp up production in the short term for a price, and the longer notice they have, the less the price premium for ramping up production.

    Doesn’t all evidence point to the fact that refineries are pushing 100% capacity all the time? Even if refineries could ramp up production for a three month joyride, can petroleum suppliers who are now selling at $110 a barrel?

    Seriously — do you expect us to believe that the Democrats’ proposed windfall profits tax wouldn’t raise the price of a gallon of gas?

    In the short run, it wouldn’t raise the price much at all. In the long run, it would raise it quite a lot as producers found it less worthwhile to invest in higher future supply.

    The rest of your discussion is on elasticity over periods of years. I do not disagree that ending the tax for the long run will result in lower priced gasoline. That was not McCain’s proposal. He proposed ending the tax for the three months out of the year that supply of gasoline is the most inelastic. In this case, the lion’s share of the gas tax savings will go straight to the producers.

  46. What happened to Reason’s Free Minds and Free Markets???

    If you want to lower the price of something the best thing you can do is increase supply. The best way to increase supply is to remove restrictions and taxes. Presidential candidates should not be looking for ways to punish producers. They should be looking for ways that producers can increase their profits. As any basic econ student can tell you, this increases motivation to find more of the product–energy in our case here.

    What the hell happened to Reason Magazine’s Free Minds and Free Markets?????????

  47. You say that Oil companies have only been more profitable than other companies in four years since 1987, but tell me.

    Isn’t it the LAST four years that they have been more profitable, and isn’t that the point??!!

    And isn’t it not just that they’ve been a little more profitable than other companies in the last 4 years, they’ve been obscenely more profitable.

    I’m not saying I support a windfall profit tax. I’m not even sure what that is. Depends on how you define windfall and my guess is it would be defined pretty minimally. There’s also the issue of the oil companies getting to use federal lands and offshore areas at very low cost, which amounts to subsidy. Maybe that’s what he’s talking about in terms of a windfall.

    But if we’re going to try to shift our economy from oil to alternatives doesn’t it makes sense to tax oil to make alternatives more competitive?

  48. I suspect that if DMC and DMS ever met in real life, they would annihilate each other, leaving behind nothing but gamma radiation.

  49. …and some neutrinos, right?

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