A Free-Market Energy Blog

Energy Statism at CPAC: Conservatives Beware! (two panels pushing carbon tax)

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- February 27, 2020

There’s a war on conservativism, but it’s not coming from the Left. Whether it’s the Soros-funded Niskanen CenterCitizens’ Climate Lobby, or the Center for Responsible Energy Solutions, the goal is the same: push the Left’s global warming agenda on conservatives—and label it “free market.” But when it comes to their funding, these eco-cons have one message: Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain! (Hayden Ludwig, Green Watch, Capital Research Center, November 5, 2019)

Unlimited money can buy a lot of things, including panels at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) annual meeting, hosted by the American Conservative Union, being held this week in Washington, DC. Two of the worst panels concern a disguised plea to implement a federal carbon tax on the pretense that such a policy will “win” the climate fight with the Left (wrong!), and rebating the carbon-tax revenue is somehow neutralizing and achievable (no and no).

I was unpleasantly surprised to see not one but two sessions at CPAC where the Left-funded climate alarmists/forced energy transformationists were pushing the policy snake-oil of a carbon tax and “dividend” program.

Young Conservatives for Carbon Dividends

Both panels are sponsored by a Left-funded front group, Young Conservatives for Carbon Dividends. Drapped by the American flag, the website advertises YCCD as

A New Free-Market Climate Advocacy Campaign From the Heart of the GOP’s Youth Wing
The Challenge: Climate Instability + The Risk of Bad Policy + A Political Liability

Quotations from aged “conservatives” follow:

  • “Doing nothing about climate change is ‘radical risk-taking’.” (Hank M. Paulson Jr. Treasury Secretary, President George W. Bush)
  • “Before you get mugged by reality, take out an insurance policy. It’s the Reagan way.” (George P. Shultz. Secretary of State to President Ronald Reagan)

This case for climate activism is a tissue of fallacies, as if a US-side CO2 tax can do anything other than damage energy affordability for America and trigger a global CO2 tariff war against “leakers.” It is exactly what the anti-energy, anti-Industrial Left wants as a beachhead for the Paris Accord and the rest of it–and what President Trump is saying “no” to.

Two CPAC Panels

Here are the two carbon tax panels:

  1. Thursday, February 27th, 2020

3:30 – 5:00 PM “The Free-Market Carbon Dividends Plan: How Capitalism Can Solve Climate”

Sponsored by Young Conservatives for Carbon Dividends

  • Joseph Pinion III, ​Conservative Commentator, FoxNews
  • Pete Seat, ​Fmr. Spokesperson, ​President George W.Bush
  • Kiera O’Brien, Founder and President, ​Young Conservatives for Carbon Dividends

2. Friday, February 28th, 2020

2:30 PM-4:00 PM How to Take On the Left on Climate, and Win

  • Brooke Cusack,​ Chairwoman, Alaska Federation of College Republicans
  • Evan Oudekerk,​ Vice-Chairman, Michigan Federation of College Republicans
  • Kiera O’Brien, ​Founder and President, Young Conservatives for Carbon Dividends
  • Joseph Pinion III, ​Conservative Commentator, FoxNews


Beware of the Left-funded front groups that are trying–not successfully–to penetrate the Trump/Republican stronghold of no carbon tax, no carbon tariffs, no Paris Climate Accord. These groups include, in addition to the Young Conservatives for Carbon Dividends (and its sister, Students for Carbon Dividends):

This Left ruse is losing steam. There is “no room for compromise,” notes Hayden Ludwig:

… the eco-Right has a bigger problem: Leftists aren’t interested in anything less than a “green” socialist revolution. They want total control of the government, and they aren’t willing to share.

Don’t take my word for it—that’s the crux of an open letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) signed by 263 activist groups in November, urging Congress to pass the Green New Deal to combat “increasing income/wealth inequality and rising white nationalism and neo-fascism” in America.

The letter almost immediately drops climate change to complain about the need for “restitution for Black and Indigenous farmers” to make up for past discrimination; broken “treaties protecting Indigenous lands, waters, and sovereignty”; and “environmental racism.”

Bernie Sanders himself has gone silent on a carbon tax, favoring the Green New Deal on a grand scale. CO2 taxers are in trouble on both the Right and the Left. Enough said ….


  1. Bill Chaffee  

    A CH4 molecule and a CO2 molecule both have one carbon atom. However methane reportedly has a far stronger greenhouse effect. So how would a carbon tax be implemented?


  2. David Wojick  

    Typically on a CO2-equivalent basis.


  3. Luke  

    Theranos George Schultz


  4. Luke  

    This is like a Petri dish of NeverTrump. Did they learn NOTHING from 2016? I’m starting to think that Michelle Malkin, and a bunch of new conservatives, are onto something abandoning “C” PAC. They have a better grasp of where the party will be in 10 years than any of these RINOs do.


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