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Uncle Sam – Please Tax Me!

June 4, 2010

I own a 300+ horsepower Mustang with a personalized license plate V8NVRL8 (V-8 Never Late).  I fell in love with Mustangs in high school and worked 2 jobs so that on the day before graduation, I walked into Ricart Ford and bought my baby.  My wife accuses me of loving the car more than her, but I digress…..As a certified motor head it may sound hypocritical, but I firmly believe that we all need to reduce our use of fossil fuels.  To this end I spent 2 years in college working on a solar car that raced from Washington D.C. to Orlando Fl.  Today, I keep a ‘granny gear’ in the rear axle of my mustang so that I can get 30+ MPG on the freeway. 

I have spent the last 2-3 years in the energy realm and have heard a lot of good ideas on how to reduce our national addiction to cheap oil.  However, one idea seems to float to the top no matter who is speaking.  I have heard this idea from egg-head scientist from a national lab.  I have heard this idea from Automotive Executives at recent event at The Ohio State University.  This week while reading the July issue of Car and Driver, I heard it from an Automotive Journalist (Aaron Robinson).  The idea – tax the heck out of gasoline.  This idea may seem apprehensible to the average hard working Joe, but look at what a stiff tax could do:
– Reduce Oil Usage – It is simple economics, higher prices drive less usage
– Create Revenue – The tax could generate much needed revenue to overhaul our nations deteriorating infrastructure
– New Fuel Efficient Cars – With a higher price, consumers will demand better fuel economy, thereby driving innovation at car companies
– Drive Innovation – With a higher cost of fossil fuels, advanced energy sources like solar and wind will become more financially attractive increasing adoption

As a motor head, I realize that a higher tax on gas would be an inconvenience, maybe even painful, but without a strong reason the average American is not going to make the right choice when it comes to the use of fossil fuels.  As so many constituents agree this is the right course, we need to put pressure on elected officials to back a tax understanding it will not be popular.  So I state to Uncle Sam, Please Tax My Gasoline.  Me and my mustang won’t complain.

Posted by Mark Norfolk