It’s to be entirely expected that many “conservative” bloggers would seize on the article in today’s Daily Express that indignantly states “FAMILIES are being ripped off by an average of £783 a year through Gordon Brown’s bogus ‘green’ taxes, it emerged yesterday” and draw a suggestive parallel to the “Green Shift” carbon tax being proposed by the Liberal Party. There are, however, a couple of things that should perhaps be taken into consideration before doing that.
First of all, the Express is allied to the Conservative party in the U.K. and therefore tends to have a political bias in that direction — so take that for whatever it’s worth. Second, the article is remarkably short on detail to the point of being almost impossibly vague. For example, it’s nowhere stated exactly how the £19.6 billion in so-called green taxes is “too much” or how the money is presumably being misallocated — one gathers that it’s going straight into general revenues rather than being directed at any specific programs to combat pollution. Again, details are few and far between and there’s no presentation of the government’s side of the story. And finally, the Labour government in the U.K. has a myriad of these green tax schemes, but it’s not clear from the article that the ones in question are in any way comparable to the Liberals’ carbon tax, other than in name only of course.
Still, it’s something that’s definitely worth digging deeper into as it could prove to be a demonstration of how well-intentioned environmental initiatives can go horribly awry, whether through deliberate fiscal legerdemain or bungled implementation.