Re-Balancing the Political Structure is the only way to Re-balancing the Economy to Re-balance the Environment
February 20, 2020 by stephenshubert
Paul Krugman in his article, “Zombie ideas and Zombie Industries”… “mentioned the International Monetary Fund’s estimates of the effective subsidy received by the fossil fuel sector. Part of that subsidy reflects tax breaks and other on-budget items. Another part reflects the I.M.F.’s estimate of the costs of greenhouse gas emissions, which many economists suspect are on the low side. The really big costs, however, involve the health effects of local air pollution, which is, literally, a real killer
As I noted, the Fund put U.S. fossil fuel subsidies at more than $600 billion, or more than $3 million for each worker in the industry. Another comparison, which I didn’t make, is with the market value of fossil fuel production, which in 2017, the comparison year, was less than $300 billion. So the U.S. fossil fuel industry destroys several hundred billion dollars of value every year
Does this mean that fossil fuel production would totally disappear if the industry had to pay its full costs? Not necessarily. ( Is this $2.00 in subsidy for every dollar earned?)
It is no shock that major corporations and many, many Billionaires pay no taxes and flood the political system with funds to keep it that way – tRump has hired more than 300 former fossil fuel lobbyist and executives to staff the EPA and other natural resource governing agencies. Oil and Gas are behaving exactly like the Tobacco Industry – adopting its tactics and strategies to protect their bloated and stolen profits.
tRump rolled out his new budget – cruelly slashing tens of BILLIONS from critical programs that people depend on like food stamps, education, Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. If Trump gets his budget passed, hundreds of thousands of children, seniors and working people would be without health care or food – all to keep lining the pockets of his wealthy donors by extending tax cuts for the rich.
So, what is our political climate today? Rachel bitecofer has a theory, well worth the read – There are no swing voters
Gabriel Zucman is an Assistant Professor of Economics at the University of California, Berkeley. He is the author of ‘The Hidden Wealth of Nations: The Scourge of Tax Havens’, and the co-author, with Emmanuel Saez, of the new book ‘The Triumph of Injustice: How the Rich Dodge Taxes and How to Make Them Pay’.
The only way that any progress can be made is if each one of us actively searches for solutions and support those solutions which will change our circumstances. The Climate Crisis is happening now. Our posterity depends on what we do noW