According to the Oregon Daily Emerald Congressman Earl Blumenauer (D Oregon) has filed legislation to place mandatory GPS tracking devices in all motor vehicles. The purpose of H.R. 3311? To create a new federal tax charging each individual and business for each mile they travel. This new tax will not replace the gas tax or any other tax. It will be a new tax in addition to the taxes we already pay. I find it very similar to Deval Patrick’s proposal to tax us per mile via RFID tracking devices in our inspection stickers.
I am not a fan of the gas tax. This miles tax is even worse for several reasons.
- It is a direct tax on virtually all economic activity. When the government implements such taxes they hurt every sector of the economy. Some of the negative effects include lost jobs and lower tax revenues even with the higher rates.
- It punishes efficiency. At least with the gas tax and gas prices in general there are market incentives at work to save fuel by saving money in the process.
- Additional costs of government oversight and private compliance. These costs are a direct dead weight loss on the economy as they don’t actually produce anything.
- Privacy and civil liberties. These issues are instantly compromised. Democrats are outraged when the government listens to international phone calls with suspected terrorists who are on watch lists. Yet when it comes to the required tracking of all innocent citizens Congressman Blumenauer and Deval give it the big thumbs up.
- Growth of Government. This program not only increases the cost of government but the scope of government intervention in our lives. Every bit of government that grows is a bit of our own freedom that we lose.
MORE BELOW THE FOLD….
I love the internet. New Media allows us to get the truth out to people without the need for the liberal media establishment. Without the free exchange of ideas it’s amazing how quickly these things can go from “wacky conspiracy theory” to “decided law.”