When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson

01 March 2006

Friedman - Who's Afraid of a Gas Tax? - New York Times

It's behind the TimesSelect firewall, dammit, but Tom Friedman has a good column today on the crying need for a rational (read: much higher) Federal gasoline tax, to create incentives for conservation and environmental protection:
The poll reported yesterday found that 60 percent of those polled, including one-third of Republicans, disapproved of how Mr. Bush is handling our energy crisis. Only 27 percent approved. Most want real action — now. In the poll, 87 percent said Washington should require car manufacturers to produce more efficient cars.

Of course, when asked simply whether they'd favor a gasoline tax, 85 percent said no and only 12 percent said yes. But when the gas tax was framed as part of a national strategy to achieve energy security and climate security, pollsters got a very different answer. When the tax was presented as reducing U.S. dependence on foreign oil, 55 percent favored it and 37 percent said no. And when asked about a gas tax that would help reduce global warming, even more respondents supported it — with 59 percent in favor and 34 percent opposed.

And that is without a single Democrat or Republican leading on this issue! Imagine if someone actually led?
Thomas L. Friedman - Who's Afraid of a Gas Tax? - New York Times

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