Earth Day? More like Cost the Earth Day. It’s about taxes and more taxes.
If I drove around the country in a Toyota Hiace van that had a broken back light, and leaked oil so much that pressing on the accelerator produced a pillar of smoke worthy of comparison with those in the tales of Moses, and then I changed to a new electric vehicle that smoothly glided around without a single comforting rattle or trace of exhaust, would I save the world?
Of course not.
If the cause of problems is carbon emissions, then talk to the Chinese about it, because the old van is of no consequence in the global context.
However, the British government seem convinced that the worst villains in the world are those who still drive combustion-engined vehicles.
It was only when returning to Dublin from England last weekend that I realized how big was the burden that the British government was imposing upon drivers. Last weekend, the price of diesel in Somerset was around £1.59 (€1.78) a litre, the price per litre in Kilmainham in Dublin was €1.49 (£1.33).
The Green movement seems obsessed with indirect taxation, make the polluters pay is their slogan.
Of course, if you are affluent, then indirect taxes are not of much consequence. They are not going to be a significant element of your weekly expenditure. However, if you are a working person for whom a car is your only means of getting to and from work, then the Greens insist that you pay 26 pence a litre more for your fuel. On a 40 litre fill, that’s £10.40 a week, more than £500 per year. Working people must pay £500 per year for virtue signalling by middle class Greens.
Talking to a political reporter over lunch, I pointed out that no working class person was going to vote for a party that deliberately imposed taxes that hurt the poorest people the most (and that which did nothing to change the reality of the world). He agreed, commenting that the Greens were popular with their own electorate and would be unworried at the thought that they would not gain working class votes.
The oddest thing of all is that the Green movement tries to present itself as Left of centre, as progressive in its politics. No-one who devises taxes that they know are going to hurt the poor the most can claim to be progressive.
At a time when people are going to food banks, sitting in cold houses, anxious about the future, it’s time the Left called out the Greens for the people they are.