Climate Change

A Common-Sense Solution to Combating Impending Damage from Climate Change

Which is one of the reasons it will be shot down by both liberals and conservatives.

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Writing in USA  Today, Glenn Reynolds of Instapundit has a novel solution to the problem of "blue zones," or the areas that climate-change activists say are likely to be flooded the soonest by rising sea levels: Tax them to discourage development and use the money to build remediation efforts too.

If we're seriously worried about flooding from higher sea levels, then we want to make sure that areas that will be flooded in the future won't be developed now. We want to limit the investment in buildings that will be swamped, and we want to limit the number of people who'll have to move. And we want to encourage people who live in those areas now to move away in the near future, before they're flooded.

How do we do that? Well, we could do a lot of things: Limit construction in lower-lying coastal areas, ban rebuilding after hurricane damage, etc. But probably the favorite tool of politicians out to regulate behavior is to tax people for doing things the politicians don't like. So that's my proposal: Tax the blue zones. That is, put a large and steeply-increasing tax on property located in areas scientists say are likely to be flooded because of global warming….

Climate activists say that between 20 million and 31 million Americans live in places that will be at risk of flooding from global warming by the end of the century. Just to be safe, I think we should aim to reduce the number of people living in these areas by 25% within 25 years, 50% within 50 years and, naturally, 100% by the end of the century.

Of course, taxes and policies rarely work so transparently, both in terms of trying to drive down a targeted behavior by making it more expensive and by being levied on the people actually involved in the activity. Most taxes, especially at the federal level, are a way of shifting money from less-politically connected people to more-politically connected people (hence, payroll taxes take money from young, relatively poor workers to give to older, relatively wealthy people—when the funds aren't being hijacked into the general revenue fund first).

Republicans, of course, believe in climate change at even lower numbers than they believe in evolution, so they likely will ignore such a proposal. And Democrats, especially wealthy ones who are so quick to denounce plebeian interest in cheap energy, are too likely to be effected by any such tax to get behind it. As Reynolds writes,

Urban Democrats, of course, are among the biggest believers in, and clamorers about, climate change. So you would expect them to support this sort of an approach. But unlike, say, high gas taxes or utility bills or closed coal mines that disproportionately affect people out in flyover country, the blue zone tax would have its greatest effect on, well, blue zones. And even there, people are more interested in talking about global warming than in sacrificing to fix it. (In Santa Barbara, a proposed "blue line" that would show where the new post-global-warming seacoast would be was withdrawn out of fear that it would hurt property values. A flood-risk tax, obviously, would have a greater effect).

Still, if global warming really is a challenge that deserves the equivalent of war mobilization in response, as some activists claim, then it's hard to call my proposal too drastic. So what do you say, Congress? Is there a "flood risk tax" in our future?

Whole thing here.

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  1. No. Fuck you, cut spending.

    Wait – does that work in this case?

  2. Impending Damage from Climate Change

    You’re missing the scare quotes, Nick, since Climate Change is nothing but a fantasy shibboleth in the minds of progtard control freaks.

    1. DENIER! STONE HIM!!!

      1. I just feel sorry for him. The facts are out there and he refuses to acknowledge them, most likely because he is a Koch brothers plant. SMH

        1. He just needs a little re-education is all…we have this nifty little camp set up for that.

          1. Where we can concentrate the deniers all together…

  3. Why don’t we just let people build where they want to build, but stop subsidizing flood insurance. Then it will work itself out.

    1. ^^this

      Subsidized flood insurance is a large part of the problem.

      Fucking unintended consequences – how do they work?

      1. As an ex insurance adjuster flood is the biggest crime against the American taxpayers. Only the rich can afford beach property and you as taxpayers get to foot the bill. The reason the federal government has flood insurance is because no insurance company is stupid enough to insure beach or river property so your elected reps stick you with the bill. To top it off you can not even use the beach.

    2. Never going to happen. We can say we’re going to but once the flood hits we’re the ones going to pay to rebuild at the same flood prone location. Cause government.

    3. Agreed, it seems odd that those worried about climate change sinking areas near the sea would still be in favour of paying for flood insurance.

      1. Well, we already know that these people are in favor of insuring planned events like pregnancies. Why wouldn’t they be in favor of insuring foreseeable events like floods?

    4. Is it a flood if the tide never goes back out?

      Don’t states claim all the land below the high tide mark without compensation? Won’t that work itself out?

  4. Tax them to discourage development and use the money to build remediation efforts too.

    Another possibility: Let people build in whatever region they want and deal with the consequences themselves. The sea might very well rise eventually, but not because of anything man does… unless it’s New Jersey Democrat Chris Christie on a beach vacation displacing a lot of water from the Atlantic.

    1. Not going to happen. Good idea though.

  5. Judging from that map, Portland, Oregon is going to be our largest surviving coastal city? Things are going to get weird.

    1. I may have missed the sarcasm…but Portland is not a coastal city.

      1. It will be after the flood, but I did not word that properly.

    2. This is one of the things I have trouble understanding. Oakland CA, for example, is about 45 feet above sea level. Are we really expecting sea levels to rise 45 feet over the next several decades? Where is all this water going to come from? I thought there wasn’t going to be any ice in the world within 20-30 years. Are sea levels going to keep rising anyway? How?

  6. It’s about time someone gave climate change a Modest Proposal–one that will be as enthusiastically embraced as the original.

  7. Build wherever you want, just don’t come crying to Big Mommy to save you from the consequences of your poor decisionmaking.

    Haha, I crack myself up.

  8. Better solution would be to euthanized all politicians and college professors around the world. Then when anyone says that they know what everyone needs to live a happy life then euthanize them also. If you want to stop global warming then kill about five billion people then limit world population to under 3 billion.

  9. That is, put a large and steeply-increasing tax on property located in areas scientists say are likely to be flooded because of global warming….

    Ah… Top Men will save us.

    Also

    too likely to be effected

    For shame, Nick. For shame.

  10. Republicans, of course, believe in climate change at even lower numbers than they believe in evolution, so they likely will ignore such a proposal.

    Sick burn. But seriously the reason most people say they don’t believe in “climate change” is because even suggesting there could possibly be a problem would lead to some fucktard politician thinking he could solve it. Also I don’t think most people who dismiss “climate change” truly believe the climate doesn’t change they just have doubts about how much of an impact man has on it. hence the change from global warming to climate change, to make everyone who disagrees with the premise look like an idiot.

    1. Exactly

      The “solutions” are the reasons for resistance.

  11. does that work in this case?

    Always and everywhere.

  12. Damn, looks like my house might possibly be under the Chesapeake Bay in 85 years. What am i going to do?

  13. Waterworld

  14. Chicken Little says….

  15. This is a brilliant idea in that it puts the AGW people on the defensive. I imagine it will just be straight out ignored, but there really isn’t a way for them to defend themselves from it.

  16. how about letting the blue zones develop whatever they want, as long as the building materials are all made from sustainable, biodegradable fish food pellets. The occasional ceramic castle is fine too.

  17. Such a epic troll. I like the tax. It creates a “put up or shut up” onus on the blue states. Either pay the crushing taxes to mitigate the apocalypse they love to screech about or don’t and admit it doesn’t really exist.

    1. Exactly, not sure why everyone else is taking the proposition seriously.

  18. Okay, this is just fucking sad.

    Nick is so far gone that he doesn’t realize that this is a Modest Proposal–that it’s a dig at the AGW crowd.

    Republicans, of course, believe in climate change at even lower numbers than they believe in evolution, so they likely will ignore such a proposal.

    Smug assholisms like this are getting way too common. Is Nick getting ready to leave us to ascend to the position of spittle-flecked talking head at MSNBC?

  19. believe in climate change at even lower numbers than they believe

    There’s a certain word in here that doesn’t belong in any publication promoting rational thought and policy

  20. What a pin-heads eye view of damages from climate change. Coastal flooding? That’s it? All the rest is good, Nick?

    Given that I take it you admit man-made climate change is real, and you accept basic science, I suggest you consider ALL the other negative impacts that will confront us beyond sea level rise. Health impacts, droughts, increased frequency of extreme weather events, ocean acidification, destruction of coral reefs, extinctions, and more. American Geophysical Union said this:

    “Impacts harmful to society, including increased extremes of heat, precipitation, and coastal high water are currently being experienced, and are projected to increase. Other projected outcomes involve threats to public health, water availability, agricultural productivity (particularly in low?latitude developing countries), and coastal infrastructure… Biodiversity loss is expected to accelerate due to both climate change and acidification of the oceans.”

    1. And by the way, there also is the cost in national security risks the Pentagon says we will face.

      None of those impacts are just limited to people living on the coast, Nick. So if it’s taxes you want as a solution, you will have to tax everyone, because everyone will be effected.

      You are not offering a solution to climate change at all. You don’t even recognize what all the problems are that will come our way.

      1. So if it’s taxes you want as a solution, you will have to tax everyone, because everyone will be effected

        Tax everyone to pay whom? And for what, exactly?

        1. Got a complaint about taxing? Tell it to Nick and Glenn. They just called for it.

          1. And what exactly is your non-taxing solution?

            1. I don’t have a problem with the solution offered. It’s a good one. In fact, it’s laughable that both Glenn and Nick think it wouldn’t be embraced by Democrats. It would. But they got the GOPs denial of science correct ( they could expand it to include libertarians as well… See you, for an example).

              But suggesting that is some sort of solution to the problem of climate change isn’t serious at all.

              1. I don’t have a problem with the solution offered. It’s a good one.

                So we are to tax the blue states to pay whom? And for what, exactly?

                1. Have fun!

    2. I’m sure you don’t realize your hysteric rantings read like a TV evangelist warning of the impending doom brought by the four horsemen of the Apocalypse.

      1. No, it’s why I quoted American Geophysical Union, and not the pulpit.

        1. No, it’s why I quoted American Geophysical Union Revelation

        2. Let’s try again. A business magazine quoting Lancet, one of the most prestigious health journals in the world;

          “The direct health impacts will come from heat waves, floods, droughts and storms, but the indirect impacts, such as changes in infectious disease patterns, pollution, malnutrition, mass migrations, and conflicts will be just as impactful.”

          http://www.businessinsider.com…..ort-2015-6

          Lancet says we (most definitely Nick and Glenn, for sure) are severely underestimating the heth impacts from climate change. If there is a publication bordering on a faux religion, it’s Reason, and you are in the congregation.

          1. LancetJohn the Revelator says we (most definitely Nick and Glenn, for sure) are severely underestimating the heth impacts from climate change

          2. Of course, The Lancet is the journal that published the original “vaccines cause autism” screed they later had to retract. Good source.

    3. Re: Jackass Ass,

      Given that I take it you admit man-made climate change is real,

      Given that you all assume too much. One thing is global warming, the other is climate change. Climate changes all the time.

      “Impacts harmful to society, including increased extremes of heat, precipitation, and coastal high water are currently being experienced”

      You are incredibly gullible, Jackass.

  21. Sweet Jeezum Crow.

    Do none of you recognize that Reynolds’ tongue is planted firmly in his cheek? Or are you lot as humorless as the leftists?

    1. And Nick is, unsurprisingly, being a duck about it. (Pardon my spelling; that rhymes with, well, Nick.

  22. ban rebuilding after hurricane damage

    or riots?

  23. Here is another curious take by both Nick and Glenn. In addition to assuming that climate change damages are limited to only sea level rise (hilarious), they assume that sea level rise is limited to where urban democrats live. They may want to check a map of the coastal United States.

    They also assume, I guess, that only Democrats live on the coast. Further, they have no problem with a tax, but would prefer to tax those impacted by a a problem, rather than those who cause the problem. That is some contorted libertarian thinking.

    Since we all are responsible for the CO2 causing the problem, a carbon tax is the only tax that addresses the problem. That is, if you believe there is a problem. I take it that both Glenn and Nick accept there is a problem.

    1. So it’s clear that this isn’t really a serious suggestion about what to do about climate change. Heck, libertarians aren’t serious about climate change. See all the comments here. See Stossels take that there isn’t enough science behind it yet. See Bailey’s suggestion yesterday that doing nothing is actually an option, and a cost effective one at that.

      But it was good for a laugh.

    2. Re: Jackass Ass,

      In addition to assuming that climate change damages are limited to only sea level rise (hilarious), they assume that sea level rise is limited to where urban democrats live.

      Clearly, Climate Change also damages brains. Especially of those who are too gullible, like the Jackass there.

      Since we all are responsible for the CO2 causing the problem[…]

      Shared responsibility! Who asked any of us to be alive, anyway?

      What an ass you are, Jackass.

      1. Hey, Mex, I can always count on you to exemplify libertarian thought process. Thanks!

        1. Re: Jackass Ass,

          I can always count on you to exemplify libertarian thought process.

          You never disappoint when it comes to exemplifying Marxian gullibility, Jackass.

  24. Abolish federal flood insurance. Simple.

  25. A Common-Sense Solution to Combating Impending Damage from Climate Change

    If you read it like this: “A Common-Sense Solution to Combating Impending Damage from the Angry Volcano God”, it actually sounds LESS stupid, Nick.

  26. We’re IN an ice age now.

    I’m all for some warming. I’d like this ice age to end. Ice ages aren’t good for life.

    Let’s do what we can to see that life gets a chance to recover before we wrap the planet in ice again.

    1. You would think after reading the Jackass’ rants and ramblings that we’re cooking from the inside and that the Gods of the Climate are bringing the day of reckoning to punish us for our transgressions.

      1. In Joe’s defense, he’s so fucking short that he has to worry about sea levels rising way before the rest of us.

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