Some comments from readers of the proposals
The first comment was from an old friend, Doug, to whom I sent an early version of these proposals as an attachment to an e-mail. Doug, who was obviously biased, wrote “Marvelous! Please put them on your web-site.”
I didn’t have a web-site except for one put together by friendly students at MIT, and I didn’t think it appropriate for me to use an MIT site to preach my political gospel. After many months, with some skilled help, I rather ineptly produced a web-site that was almost unvisited, and the present version is the second update. .
A positive comment came from KH in July 2008:
[I] write this letter to compliment you on your Policy Proposal white paper and the effort you are making to educate influential people in this area. I agree with every word, with every punctuation mark, and every parenthesis (I use too many, also!). If I EVER have an enlightened moment and imagine a way to assist you, I will do so in a New York minute.
Some more comments came through in July 2007 as a result of some publicity in magazines.
AK wrote on July 9, 2007:
“Thank you for your personal response! Now I get it. Since higher energy users pay in more but the fund is paid out in equal portions, there is an element of redistribution. Very simple. If we can get the government to implement this as stated without siphoning off the cash flow or redistributing it to their favored constituencies this will be a good plan. I will be happy to share this and hope it gets some positive support. Thanks for your efforts.”
DJS wrote on July 9, 2007:
“I agree with your reasoning and your positive mental perspective. I’ll think about this and give you positive suggestions to implement your concept in the future, as may occur to me. Thank you for your efforts on all our behalf.”
JW wrote on July 13, 2007:
“Your overall plan is great. If the general population consisted of more than chimpanzees, I think it would be adopted and would work.”
A different JW wrote on July 18, 2007:
“Hi Dave, I saw your letter in ME Magazine, and took a look at your website. There’s nothing there that I would disagree with, except to add to your introductory paragraphs that the customers of engineers share the blame. This is especially so, given that your rational thoughtful engineering solution is being ignored by the customers.
I’m glad to see you are still trying to get people to listen. When I work to spread the word, I explain that I’ve owned only 45 MPG cars ever since the eighties when they first came on the market. It is crazy that our nation is stuck on the petroleum dependence because gigantic vehicles are a source of personal pride.”
MM wrote August 6, 2007:
“I like your suggestions, very much. I have been advocating a similar approach (fuel taxes and rebates) for years.
“I keep wishing US politicians had the balls of the European politicians and would actually do the right thing. No one has been able to explain how public pressure has not been able to lower fuel taxes in Europe, but it has blocked it from happening here in the US.”
In September 2007, PC, a (legal) resident from Brazil and a very successful designer/manufacturer, whom I asked particularly to comment on the implications of the policy on illegal aliens, wrote as follows. (Modesty should require me to edit out the first sentence, but I’m not that modest.)
“You have a brilliant mind, an incredible awareness of the world mechanisms, and the creativity and vision to link them together. I understand from your proposal that it basically suggests to raise [prices for polluting, for using nonrenewable resources, etc.] a notch or two in this country. . . . . .I couldn’t agree more. It is rather shocking and even sad to observe the amount of cheap unneeded junk [that is bought.] Middle-class families will buy a $5000 lawnmower rather than pay for someone who needs a job to mow their lawns. Affluent families may own a $100,000 car yet complain about the price of gas or the utilities’ charges for running their 60-inch plasma TVs. It bothers me seeing people consuming and wasting natural resources because they can pay for them, and therefore, in their opinion, they own them.
“Your idea of distributing the tax trust fund in equal shares among all citizens is an incredible assumption, a beautiful and powerful concept that grabbed most of my interest. . . ..I agree that it would also address, for better or worse, the current illegal immigration issue. Even though I feel sorry for most of these, and because they are in the majority honest hard-working people, we should call them “undocumented immigrants” not illegal.”