The Australian Labour-proposed emissions trading scheme is insane.
Basically government places a huge tax on an industry (let's call it $1,000,000).
It then gives up to $300,000 back to said industry as an incentive not to move to a country where it won't be taxed $1,000,000.
It gives up to $300,000 to researchers trying to find better ways of not producing carbon emissions.
And it gives the rest to struggling households who have been charged far more by the industry trying to survive after losing $1,000,000 of it's previous profit to the government.
Do you think the industry is going to stay? I don't.
Do you think that the middle and upper income earners will be 'reimbursed' for extra household costs when the low income group is swelling in its ranks as job losses snowball? I don't.
And what will the spin-off for New Zealand be, given Australia is our biggest export market?
As the Wall St Journal comments today;
If the government-directed breakdown of free-market price signals sounds like creeping socialism, it is....the ultimate cost in terms of jobs and growth is unknowable.
Samizdata quote of the day
18 minutes ago