Don’t Suspend the Gas Tax

Calls to suspend gasoline tax in the USA are growing as prices surge. This is not a good idea! We need to help people be less oil-dependent, not enable our petro-addiction & entitlement! (The high prices people are complaining about are still a fraction of what people pay in other countries where the price of gas more accurately reflects the true cost.)

Removing gas tax would be good for motorists’ wallets in short term, but bad for longterm, overall economic resilience & bad for the planet.

Better ideas:

  • Reward innovation, ingenuity, grassroots solutions. (Example: making biofuels from invasive plants in each local area. Wouldn’t it be cool if each community could produce at least some of its own transportation fuel?)
  • Give incentives to employers for allowing employees to work from home.
  • Organize a nationwide “Fossil-Free Transportation” design festival where schoolkids and university students design sun-powered vehicles and other alternative transport. Make it fun!
  • Give people some kind of bonus for carpooling, commuting by bike, and other individual actions that reduce gas consumption and petro-dependency.
  • Give people vouchers to try out public transportation.
  • Effective immediately, switch government meetings and other public meetings and conferences back to virtual rather than in-person. They did it through the pandemic — the Supreme Court did deliberations by phone, remember? — they can do it again now!
  • What else can you think of to add to this list?

We must reduce unnecessary petro consumption! Nobody is entitled to low gas prices that do not reflect the true cost to people and the planet. Our national security and wellbeing is at stake!! And oh yeah, the health of that pesky biosphere thing we depend on.

By the way, I have heard that of every dollar we spend at the gas pump, the vast majority — like 80 cents or more — immediately goes out of the community. All of my ideas above would put money into the pockets of local people and communities.