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The carbon tax keeps reappearing as a policy option, no matter how often it is defeated. While its popularity with the Obama administration is hardly surprising, what is more troubling is its recent advocacy by some prominent Republicans, including Gregory Mankiw, George W. Bush’s chief economist, and Douglas Holtz-Eakin, senior advisor to John McCain’s 2008 presidential campaign. More ominously, in an April editorial in the Wall Street Journal, George Shultz and Gary Becker endorsed a carbon tax—the 82-year-old Becker is a Nobel laureate in economics, and the 92-year-old Shultz is a pillar of the Republican establishment, serving in top positions in Republican administrations from 1969 to 1989, including Secretary of State under President Reagan.
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