Dylan Ewers I think your gas tax would completely discriminate against people in very rural areas. Can you imagine living in Montana, Alaska, Colorado, Nevada etc....and having to cope with a dollar tax hike while everyone else relied on their bike or the local transit? The east coast is not the backbone of America. It is not Eurpoe.
Dylan Ewers There are plenty of private schools that cost between 10-30k a year. Those are for a certain kind of student who wants to be around rich people and be taught by Harvard and Princeton grads. They pay their teachers much more bc they opted not to teach at a college level. Most private schools are much cheaper than public and still out perform without the spending injections.
Dylan Ewers Schools will open until the demand is met. Teachers at my school made much less than public school teachers bc they are not unionized and they believed in the way they were allowed to educate. They though it was more effective, and it was. The kids who dont get in will be accepted into different private schools. They will open up to cater to not just one kind of student.
Dylan Ewers I agree with you. However, I think it is ONLY feasible to have the MOST protected rights in a society that relies on informal institutions (voluntary orgs) rather than formal (govt, laws etc) instituitons. "It is quite impossible for me to conceive of fraternity as legally enforced, without liberty being legally destroyed, and justice being legally trampled underfoot."
Dylan Ewers Michael, I think your last point is good about govt not blocking the internet. For if they did, they would be restricting your access to information that you have the right to. However, that is not the same thing as not supplying it. If I build a damn, I restrict your access to water. However, if I do not build a river to you, I do not restrict your acces to it.
Dylan Ewers Agreed John. I think he is trying to say that having a right is not the same thing as exercising it. You want to extend the term "right" to actively exercising it. You are right Otto, what good is a right if you dont exercise it. However, we are limited by scarce resources. I have the "right" to visit the pacific coast, but I live in DC and don't have $1500 for ticket.
Dylan Ewers Why would you not expect a private firm to protect rights? The most efficient kind of right protection are done informally in families, churches, communities, social circles, work etc. The government can't afford to protect all the "rights" we actually have. That's why they are given to us all through natural law, not government.
Dylan Ewers Achieveing environmental harmony is a separate argument from weather or not the tax will produce a car that is cheaper for the consumer and does not run on gas. DOES NOT RUN ON GAS is as environmental as I am prepared to discuss in the scope of this gas tax debate.
Dylan Ewers How would you quantify these environmental benefits? The fact that we are using a gas tax implies that we are going to shift to green technology (fuel efficiency, electric). The article above doesn't focus on the environment. It focuses on what people care about NOW. Mainly, deficit reduction and lower costs for transportation. If we can go green, two birds with one stone.
Dylan Ewers But at the same time they also live in the real world and know when they have to make a deal. I think that balancing ideals with pragmatism is something democrats struggle with. They are too idealistic and have no practical plan but to spend. Look at their budget proposal? Dems have no clue how to take leadership bc they are trying to please everyone.
Dylan Ewers I really like this article, very interesting perspectives from everyone. I am a little bit surprised that no one has brought up the fact that the US gov was set up to be constrained. Limited vs more limited. Then we became progressive, pushing beyond the limits of the rules we set up. Conservatives understand this and at their core believe we should return to limited gov.
Dylan Ewers I also would like to explore this tax more through a debate forum. However, I would also like to redirect my argument. We are talking about using the tax as the best way to reduce the deficit and produce cars that save consumers money. We are not speculating on the "social costs" regarding the environment. I think we all know it will never pass as a reg on that merit alone
Dylan Ewers Many of those same people predicted an ice age 30 years ago . At one point all the intellectuals in the world thought the world was flat. I am not saying I know for a fact they are all wrong but I can say that more damage is done to nature by nature than man (forest fires, volcanoes).
Dylan Ewers Michael, I read your comment "'Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.'" What happens if the internet goes out? Is Verizon trampling on your right to information?
Dylan Ewers First, I am a little surprised that you would just sneak that environmental assumption into this argument. Not everyone agrees on that. Also, the "social cost"? Sounds pretty arbitrary. Happy to debate it. Second, why are you splitting hairs on "a tax on prices is not an explicit regulation". Don't you see the point of not raising taxes on goods that affect all prices now?
Dylan Ewers Not in the short run. People would continue to drive their cars to work and incurr the costs with negative benefit to them and zero benfit to the "green cause". We are in a recession, unemployment is rampant. Let's tax something everyone uses. Food prices will go up! Answer this, what did the Smoot-Hawley Tarriff do to the economy during the great depression? Read history?
Dylan Ewers The whole idea of studying economics in public policy is to see the UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCES it produces. Only by factoring in those can you weigh its benefits and costs. Wouldn't you agree?
Dylan Ewers I am saying that if we switch to a more expensive form of car technology (or the wrong one) then we lose, despite decreasing gas consumption. I think that if we spike gas $ with a tax, and electric $ with an overload of demand, we will see on over capitalized market shrink while an undercapitalized grow before they have time to adjust. More and more govt regs will follow.
Dylan Ewers I understand that we differ in that Andrew. However, you are minimizing my argument and not addressing extended parts. You are only thinking one move ahead. "We decrease gas consumption, we win". I am saying it is more complicated than that.
Dylan Ewers The "broken glass" fallacy comes to mind. You are stimulating demand for green technology, but you are also decreasing the exact same demand for other products that people would be spending their money on instead of the gas tax. People could stop eating expensive healthy food & eat at McDonalds. Why do you think you can spend others money better than they can?
Dylan Ewers Andrew, the point of my analogy was to illustrate that there are different kinds of electric cars (like movie players) that need to be tested by the market before we decide which one should be used by all Americans. Don't you think you are giving GM (laserdisk) an unfair advantage to another company (DVD) who will revolutionize the cars? Maybe its not even electricity!