In the Pipeline: 9/27/12

This is too fun to pass up. National Legal and Policy Center (9/26/12) reports: “Well, at least taxpayers’ money didn’t completely go to waste – we now know where in Connecticut to find an auto dealer who delivers at-your-doorstep electric car towing services with a smile. As for the $107,000 Karma, Consumer Reports found only a few other flaws that led it to rank it as the worst luxury sedan – and fourth-worst sedan overall – of those it has rated. And the magazine rates lots of cars.”


For those scoring at home, about 40 million people really die each year from starvation or malnutrition.  But here in the West, the rich folks would rather worry about exceedingly hypothetical deaths that may occur over the next 12 years rather than the actual deaths that will occur in the next 12 hours. Reuters (9/25/12) reports: “More than 100 million people will die and global economic growth will be cut by 3.2 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) by 2030 if the world fails to tackle climate change, a report commissioned by 20 governments said on Wednesday.”


Stop me if you’ve heard this before. NYTimes (9/25/12) reports: “As Tesla Motors, a maker of electric cars, burns through cash and misses production targets, it is turning to investors and taxpayers for extra financial help. On Tuesday, Tesla announced plans to sell five million shares to raise cash. The federal government agreed earlier to waive some conditions of a $465 million loan, easing pressure on the company over the next couple of quarters. The moves raised questions about the long-term viability of the company.”


We totally missed this yesterday, but the Romney crew should run commercials touting the EU “concerns”. The Guardian (9/25/12) reports: “EU officials are privately alarmed at the chilling effect that a Mitt Romney win in the US presidential election could have on global climate talks, EurActiv has learned.”


Remember this next time Denise Bode starts talking about how they “need” the PTC.  It allows wind “producers” to distort the market to their advantage. Laurel Outlook (9/26/12) reports: “But, “contrary to logic,” a surplus of energy continues to be produced. While one would expect to see a drop in production because of less demand, said Simonich, that has not happened because wind energy is subsidized by the federal government, which incentivizes producers to continue to produce despite market conditions. In fact, the industry is currently installing as much wind energy production as possible to meet a legislative deadline, after which it is uncertain whether wind energy will continue to be subsidized.”


So the CRS says that the amount of money taken in as a result of a carbon tax set at 20 cents per gallon is about the same as the federal excise tax on transportation fuels, which, coincidentally, is set at 18.4 cents per gallon.  Shocker.  What they did not say is how voters might feel about a doubling of the gas tax. E&ENews(9/26/12) reports: “The CRS report found that Congress could cut the federal deficit in half in 10 years by enacting a $20 per metric ton carbon tax that rises 5.6 percent annually. This prediction relies upon the Congressional Budget Office’s August estimate that the U.S. government would run a deficit of $2.3 trillion between 2012 and 2022. CBO has estimated that the carbon tax would raise $1.2 trillion over the next decade.”


The scarcity narrative is getting killed.  That’s good news for normal people.  But bad news for the “environmentalists”. Area Development (Fall 2012) reports: “The economic boom fueled by new natural gas drilling technologies has been stunning — some parts of the country barely noticed the Great Recession as they scrambled to find enough well-paid workers to extract shale gas from the ground. But what if that boom was just the tip of the economic-development iceberg? What if the gas boom turned out to be a catalyst helping to spark a much-needed rejuvenation in North American manufacturing?”

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