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January 17, 2008

A National Security Levy on Oil

-- by Dave Johnson

Update Jay Buckey has posted this as a DailyKos diary. I suggest giving it a recommend to get this idea into discussion.

I just came across this. Jay Buckey is running for the Senate in New Hampshire, and he just came out with a proposal to put a National Security Levy on Oil so WE, THE PEOPLE benefit from high oil prices, instead of just sending all that money to others. Go see his post on this over at the progressive blog Blue Hampshire: Taking Back Our Future and Our Freedom: A Policy Proposal. Excerpts:

Right now, every time we fill up our cars, we're sending money to foreign countries -- where roughly 60 percent of the more than 20 million barrels of oil we use everyday is produced. It's like they're taxing us, for their benefit.

Some of those countries, like Canada, are close allies, but others aren't. And whenever we put a gallon of gas in our cars, we're using our hard-earned dollars to help fund foreign oil producers in the Mideast, in Russia, and elsewhere.

Moreover, OPEC and other oil-producing countries have been able to lower and raise oil prices like puppeteers pulling the strings. Alternative energy companies have often failed when oil prices were low; American consumers - especially lower-income citizens - have been stretched almost to the breaking point when prices spike.

It's time to put a stop to this.

The National Security Levy will move us toward energy independence and secure the future of our country for our children.

Here's how it will work: the National Security Levy will be a fee on all oil consumption in the United States - combined with a price floor that guarantees oil will not sink below a certain price.

. . . If the world price of oil falls, the National Security Levy will be increased, so that the price in the US remains above a certain established floor. This means that alternative energy producers won't be wiped out by temporary declines in world oil prices, as happened in the 1980s; they'll know that the price of oil in the US would not be allowed to fall below the floor price.

If, however, the price of world oil spikes dramatically, then the National Security Levy would be suspended during the spike.

I love this. A levy, so WE, THE PEOPLE get the benefit of the price fluctuations, either through a tax that we can use to pay for important things like schools, or through alternative energy incentives!

This guy is great. Go read. Here is his campaign site. If you agree that WE THE PEOPLE should be receiving the benefits from the high oil prices, instead of others, give him a few bucks. In fact, give Jay a few Buckeys!

A bit more from Jay's post,

But you might ask, if a National Security Levy on oil is such a great idea, why isn't it already in place? Well, the basic idea isn't new, but according to conventional wisdom a serious proposal like this is politically unacceptable.

I believe that for too long the politicians in Washington have underestimated the will and determination of the American people. I believe that Americans are ready to change, ready to make a commitment to our future, and ready to work to make that future a reality.

And I believe that what is truly unacceptable is to have American servicemen and women risking their lives overseas -- in part to protect our access to oil -- and yet not do everything we can here in New Hampshire and across the country to end our dependence on foreign oil. We need to take positive action to protect our nation's security and our future.


Disclaimer - I am not working for Jay Buckey but might do so later on. I wrote this because I strongly agree.

Posted by Dave Johnson at January 17, 2008 6:24 AM

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