And now for something completely different

Robert Waldmann

Those of us who fear global warming want to make it more expensive to burn coal. One way to do this is to impose absurdly high wages and restrictive work rules on coal mines. We know how to drive prices up. It is easy. Militant unions have shown the way.

I propose the American Power and Give Coal Miners a Break Act. The idea is to impose a special minimum wage for coal miners (which must be even higher than the wages they get) *and* to require time and a half if they work more than 30 hours a week. This implies a higher price of coal, lower demand for coal , and, oh look 30 hours a week, just as many employed coal miners.

More flaky anti market ideas after the jump.

The idea is to pit the coal miners against the coal consumers. Resistance to cap and trade among Democrats is concentrated in coal mining states. Buying off the coal miners is politically necessary. It is easy to help workers at the expense of consumers. If we want it to be expensive to consume coal, that’s what we want.

And coal price supports, let’s have coal price supports. Why do farmers get all the subsidies ?

And tougher safety regulation, which will drive up the price and make mines safer.
Finally make exempt coal companies from the Sherman antitrust act.

The general idea is that regulators, unions, and cartels have vast experience in finding ways to hurt consumers. There are some consumers (of electricity) who we want to hurt. Let’s do what we do best, interfere with the market system to help special interests at the expense of consumers.