The editorial even compares the cap and trade bill to the voucher systems used in the former communist countries to 'privatize' industries, which made a few connected buyers sudden billionaires.
If passed, the cap-and-trade bill will centralize an inordinate amount of power in Washington and generate vast fortunes for people with friends in high places. On the "cap" side, 85 percent of the "carbon credits" will be given away to power generators; oil and natural gas concerns; the auto industry; various energy-intensive industries such as cement, glass and paper manufacturers; and a variety of "carbon-capture," deforestation-prevention and other dubious special interests.
Because the credits will be distributed by the government, the key question is who will decide who gets them. As we have seen recently with the stimulus bill, Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) bailouts, the automotive fiasco and the federal budget generally, only those with friends in high places will have a place at the trough. Those with pull will profit; those without will be run out of business.
On the "trade" side, influence peddling will focus on the question of "carbon offsets." A number of sticky questions have arisen, such as whether farmers can claim offsets for the plants they plant, or paper companies for the trees they grow. Perhaps homeowners should get credit for their lawns. Ultimately, the number, type and -- most important -- market value of the so-called offsets will be determined in Washington, which places more power in the hands of politicians and their cronies.
These people will make vast fortunes on this legislation by trading influence and rule-making that benefits them at the expense of the rest of us. These energy brokers and carbon-offset middlemen will produce nothing and make no contributions to society but will become rich based on political preference and other insider influence.Some of the wording here makes it pretty clear the writer has read Ayn Rand, doesn't it?