Palin backed Alaskan windfall-profits tax

posted at 8:50 am on August 11, 2008 by Ed Morrissey

John McCain and nearly every economist agrees that a windfall-profits tax on the oil industry would drive away investment, increase prices to consumers, and make Americans more dependent on foreign oil. If anyone wants to see that in microcosm, they only need look at Alaska. With the backing of Governor Sarah Palin, the state managed to drive away investment in development by hiking taxes on oil companies drilling on state lands:

Over the opposition of oil companies, Republican Gov. Sarah Palin and Alaska’s Legislature last year approved a major increase in taxes on the oil industry — a step that has generated stunning new wealth for the state as oil prices soared. …

BP Alaska, which runs Prudhoe Bay, said earlier this year that it had delayed the development in the western region of the North Slope as a result of the tax. ConocoPhillips cited the same reason for scrapping a $300 million refinery project.

“What the tax has done is take away all the upside,” said Doug Suttles, president of BP Alaska. The U.K.-based oil company paid more than $500 million in taxes to Alaska last quarter — far more than it earned in profits from Alaskan oil, according to Suttles.

Investment dollars are flowing instead to places that have a better return, like the massive deep-water projects offshore in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, where ConocoPhillips said the government take equals less than 50 percent of the barrel.

In fact, Palin’s plan looks similar in concept to Barack Obama’s plan. The state gave Alaskans $1200 checks from oil revenues as a one-time bonus to pay for increased fuel prices, a move Palin pushed. That echoes the Obama plan to send one-time rebates to taxpayers, funded by similar levies on oil companies.

However, the results in Alaska should warn the rest of the country about pursuing this policy.  Already oil companies have stopped drilling on state lands, thanks to the tax burden Alaska imposes.  It should be cheaper to drill and extract from these areas, but the oil companies have decided to focus their investment instead on the Gulf, where the costs and risks would normally be higher.  In Alaska, the government takes 75% of the price on a barrel of oil at current prices, which gives them no incentive to work there.

If this plan gets pushed across the country in an Obama administration, then we can expect similar disincentives to curtail domestic production all across the nation.  Oil companies will explore other parts of the world, but American oil companies will not have the access they enjoy here.  Our own companies will be weakened in international competition, and we will have to both buy more oil from abroad, and more from state-owned companies, while American investors lose significant ground.

Palin has been a strong voice for opening ANWR to reasonable and planned development.  Perhaps she needs to rethink her approach to overtaxing oil companies for their work on state lands while encouraging the use of federal lands, too.


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Second look at Eric Cantor for VP (Jindal being needed for the time being in cleaning up LA).

Wethal on August 11, 2008 at 8:52 AM

Don’t get me wrong, your still hot, but I wouldn’t vote for ya.

RobertInAustin on August 11, 2008 at 8:53 AM

Too bad, so sad, Sarah. I re-think my good feeling about you.
L

letget on August 11, 2008 at 8:53 AM

Yeah, this is a deal-killer to me. McCain should remove Palin from the VP list, even though it pains me to say that.

I also find it outrageous that Alaska’s tax burden amounts to 75% of the price of a barrel of oil, or even that drilling in the Gulf requires the oil companies to pay a tax equal to 50% of the price of the barrel. The 50% level is basically a European level of taxation. No wonder the feds have to give the oil companies various tax breaks.

Outlander on August 11, 2008 at 8:54 AM

No doubt the high tax contributed to her support for opening up ANWR?

Grafted on August 11, 2008 at 8:55 AM

Why stop with greedy oil companies. If it is good for big oil it should make good sense for the rest of the economy.

Why not a windfall profit tax on personal incomes above $100k and any company that manages greater than 8% return on capital.

That way the govt can make “investments” in the country and ameliorate global suffering and save the planet.

Sweet!

moxie_neanderthal on August 11, 2008 at 8:58 AM

50% tax is considered low? Wow. Why aren’t the oil companies reminding people that the government takes a much bigger cut that they do.

I think McCain is hanging out with Tom Ridge today – we’ll see soon.

forest on August 11, 2008 at 8:59 AM

Why not a windfall profit tax on personal incomes above $100k and any company that manages greater than 8% return on capital.

Don’t give ‘em any more ideas, moxie.

forest on August 11, 2008 at 9:00 AM

SIGH

Wanderlust on August 11, 2008 at 9:09 AM

A good example of cause and effect.

TooTall on August 11, 2008 at 9:11 AM

And this, ladies and gentlemen, is why it would be consarned insane for McCain to make a “one term only” pledge. For all we know, Bobby Jindal might also step on his own dork in the next four years, and then who is supposed to be the GOP leader?

Sekhmet on August 11, 2008 at 9:13 AM

I think it’s time to throw Palin under the bus. McCain should make a big deal out of this. I’d do a study and then run a huge ad that says:

[Chart]

Gas prices — $4.00 a gallon
(less) fed+state taxes (MI – .524, OH – .464, PA – .495)
(less) __________ (imputed tax caused by per-barrel taxes imposed on oil companies, let’s say it’s .75)

“Michigan, Ohio, and PA residents – you are paying a 31% effective tax rate on a gallon of gas. Barack Obama and Sarah Palin want you to pay EVEN MORE and want all that money going overseas to Hugo Chavez and the Middle East. John McCain says no to higher oil taxes and yes to drilling, yes to alternative energy, etc.”

Outlander on August 11, 2008 at 9:13 AM

Well, now we know why Palin wants drilling in ANWR. Her and her pack of thieves in Alaska take SEVENTY-FIVE PERCENT!

p0s3r on August 11, 2008 at 9:17 AM

poo

Wade on August 11, 2008 at 9:21 AM

She was too good to be true. Stay in Alaska Gov. Palin.

ctmom on August 11, 2008 at 9:29 AM

[Gulf of Mexico] where ConocoPhillips said the government take equals less than 50 percent of the barrel.

ConocoPhillips said that in total, once royalty payments and other taxes are added in, the state [Alaska] captures about 75 percent of the value of a barrel.

An accounting benefit eases the sting for oil companies. They get a huge deduction on their state taxes when calculating their federal taxes.

So the comparison tax rates the article provides seems to be 25% higher in Alaska. But the article fails to mention the Alaskan percentage previous to Palin’s tax increase, and fails to state how much of the increase is actually deflected by the “accounting benefits.” What the article does achieve in effect is the isolation of Alaska’s decision, with only a brief mention in conclusion that the same is happening everywhere else.

I always found it interesting that Alaska actually forwards surplus corporate taxes back to the citizen’s pockets. Alaska and Hawaii being situated away from the contiguous states leaves them with particular needs that find solutions contrary to those states fitting snugly together. So far as states with oil benefiting its citizens, I recall that once upon a time, the University of Texas System owned oil lands and interests that kept in state tuition extraordinarily low, making higher education affordable for ALL Texas residents as the only standard for entry was GPA/SAT scores. How times do change as industry mutates globally, not for the best so far as residential reality is concerned. So it seems.

maverick muse on August 11, 2008 at 9:30 AM

John McCain and nearly every economist agrees that a windfall-profits tax on the oil industry would drive away investment, increase prices to consumers, and make Americans more dependent on foreign oil.

McCain Warner-Lieberman Global Warming Cap and Trade scheme.

When he ran for president in 2000, Mr. McCain said he was surprised by the number of young people who would raise the subject at nearly every campaign stop in New Hampshire.

“I didn’t know about climate change,” he said. But in the intervening years, he said he has studied the issue very closely and now very much agrees with those worried about the impact the use of carbon- based fuels is having on the planet.

“There is no doubt in my mind that climate change is real,” he said.

I wonder if pushing McCain’s energy economics and climate notions, in anything but a comparative way with Obama’s, is realistic.

JiangxiDad on August 11, 2008 at 9:35 AM

Dang it!

CP on August 11, 2008 at 9:36 AM

“What the tax has done is take away all the upside,” said Doug Suttles, president of BP Alaska. The U.K.-based oil company paid more than $500 million in taxes to Alaska last quarter — far more than it earned in profits from Alaskan oil, according to Suttles.

Investment dollars are flowing instead to places that have a better return, like the massive deep-water projects offshore in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, where ConocoPhillips said the government take equals less than 50 percent of the barrel.

Is it too much to hope that Bill “you’re being fleeced by the oil companies” O’Reilly reads this?

Buy Danish on August 11, 2008 at 9:38 AM

Another liberal Republican! That’s why I am no longer a Republican…

sabbott on August 11, 2008 at 9:47 AM

O/T
Michelle is open for registration if anyone wants to get in.
L

letget on August 11, 2008 at 9:48 AM

And a hush fell over the Palin crowd…

Told you she wasn’t ready for prime time. Now, only problem is, if she runs in 2012 or 2016, she’ll get tagged as a flip-flopper on wind fall taxes.

And as we all know flip-flopping was the real reason the Evangelistas wouldn’t/won’t support Romney, right?[/sarc

SuperCool on August 11, 2008 at 9:51 AM

Golly, you mean when liberals (Republicans or Defacrats) keep raising taxes on items they actually drive business away reducing tax revenues? Hmmmmm.

BowHuntingTexas on August 11, 2008 at 9:56 AM

o well, and she was hot too

trailortrash on August 11, 2008 at 10:00 AM

O/T
Michelle is open for registration if anyone wants to get in.
L

letget on August 11, 2008 at 9:48 AM

Wow a rare event indeed.

DerKrieger on August 11, 2008 at 10:02 AM

Crap.

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on August 11, 2008 at 10:05 AM

Welcome to the Tony Soprano energy policy.

“We’ll allow you to earn a little, you just gotta share with the people that make this whole thing possible. Think of it as insurance.

I’d hate for any pipelines or drilling rigs to become damaged in anyway.”

moxie_neanderthal on August 11, 2008 at 10:07 AM

Oh well, she is still young. She still has a future.

WisCon on August 11, 2008 at 10:08 AM

And a hush fell over the Palin crowd…

McCain/Palin 2008!
Jindal/Palin 2012! (IF she repeals that tax)

jgapinoy on August 11, 2008 at 10:09 AM

Sonofa…

EduardoOTI on August 11, 2008 at 10:11 AM

I could probably live with it if it were justified as a ‘foreign business’ tax rather than a ‘windfall profits’ tax.

I think the playing field should be a little more level for American Owned businesses.

cntrlfrk on August 11, 2008 at 10:27 AM

When I read this, it turned me off from her. She had such promise until she supported that stupid democrat plan.

jencab on August 11, 2008 at 10:32 AM

Dang. Another Charlie Brown with football moment. Just when you think you’ve found someone in the GOP that you can root for…something like this pops out. Well, maybe she’ll modify that in the next 4 years. If not, well, we’ll see if she pays a price at the ballot box.

austinnelly on August 11, 2008 at 10:32 AM

Every candidate for president and vice president this time around has turned out to have a fatal flaw. Dangit! What is so hard about just being a conservative?!

Repeat after me, Republicans:

Smaller government, smaller government, smaller government!!!!!!!

aero on August 11, 2008 at 10:43 AM

poo

Wade on August 11, 2008 at 9:21 AM


Mrs. Howell
, is that you??

Captain Scarlet on August 11, 2008 at 10:44 AM

I wish someone, anyone, would start to point out the difference between profit and profit margin…One of the worst people whom are right of center propagating this socialist propaganda is Bill O’Reilly. I usually agree with O’Reilly(75% of the time anyway)but his pounding of oil companies over profit is either out of complete ignorance or outright dishonesty. When will people stop beating up on U.S. concerns???????????

adamsmith on August 11, 2008 at 10:45 AM

I cannot believe that so many people are willing to throw Sarah under the bus. I think most of you missed the lines in the story that says,

Palin’s administration last week gained legislative approval for a special $1,200 payment to every Alaskan to help cope with gas prices, which are among the highest in the country.

That check will come on top of the annual dividend of about $2,000 that each resident could receive this year from an oil-wealth savings account.

That’s $3200 for every man, woman, and child in Alaska! Just for living there. What state that the rest of you live in, is willing to do that?

Everyone was looking for the perfect CFPOTUS, and now everyone is looking for the perfect CFVPOTUS, you are not going to find it. I am sure that there are issues with every candidate. Sarah may not be perfect, but she is definitely not Ridge, Pawlenty, or Crist.

BTW, when you read the article, consider the slant of the source, the Seattle PI, possibly the most left wing newspaper on the left coast.

Do I think Sarah should be asked about this? Absolutely. Bu to through her under the bus as Outlander suggested, is a little early.

ConservativePartyNow on August 11, 2008 at 10:47 AM

Upinak could not be reached for comment.

BigD on August 11, 2008 at 10:51 AM

Heart-broken.

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on August 11, 2008 at 10:52 AM

Crap, crap, crap. This is a deal breaker, and I don’t like what we’ve got left. Romney’s a great guy and would make a great President, but I just don’t think he’s going to help this ticket.

Dudley Smith on August 11, 2008 at 10:56 AM

Aren’t there any conservatives left???

/despair

fossten on August 11, 2008 at 10:59 AM

That’s $3200 for every man, woman, and child in Alaska! Just for living there. What state that the rest of you live in, is willing to do that?

A state whose politicians cut the deal of a lifetime 30 years ago that allows them to buy votes. “Vote for me, and I’ll make your yearly, uh, ‘investment return’ check even bigger!!! A chicken in every pot too!!”

***I am sure that there are issues with every candidate. Sarah may not be perfect, but she is definitely not Ridge, Pawlenty, or Crist.
***
ConservativePartyNow on August 11, 2008 at 10:47 AM

Right, but energy is the GOP’s #1 policy, and Palin signed in a bill that imposed a 75% tax on Alaskan oil and then gloated about how well she was lining the state’s pockets by doing so.

Outlander on August 11, 2008 at 11:00 AM

And as we all know flip-flopping was the real reason the Evangelistas wouldn’t/won’t support Romney, right?[/sarc

SuperCool on August 11, 2008 at 9:51 AM

Yes. [/no sarc]

dominigan on August 11, 2008 at 11:02 AM

I wish someone, anyone, would start to point out the difference between profit and profit margin…

Yep, basic personal finance that appears to be lost on many.

Using this logic, GM and other American car makers should be stroking checks. We could call it windfall profits tax but I like the sound of global warming reparations. With this extortion investment, we could all both stimulate the economy, punish a bad industry and perhaps get additional rebates to buy more enviromentally/gas friendly automobiles.

I suggest that Detroit’s mayor begin plying these voodo economic waters from his cell.

I’ll take mine as a direct deposit, thank you.

moxie_neanderthal on August 11, 2008 at 11:03 AM

Sarah we barely got to know you.

Wade on August 11, 2008 at 11:04 AM

$500 million in taxes to Alaska last quarter — Ed Morrissey

Just think of that!! That’s two BILLION in taxes a year to the state of Alaska. Then keep in mind that the state puts about another fifty-cents per gallon tax on the price at the pump. Our government robs us blind.

Maxx on August 11, 2008 at 11:08 AM

Alaska- so crappy we have to pay you to live here!

Rhinoboy on August 11, 2008 at 11:12 AM

Funny, when I brought this up on Palin threads before nobody hardly said a word or worse, I was labeled a Palin hater.

lowandslow on August 11, 2008 at 11:15 AM

legalized theft

kirkill on August 11, 2008 at 11:15 AM

You should see the mess she’s done with the biggest pipeline project in history:
http://alaska-gas-pipeline.blogspot.com/2008/06/palin-pushes-agia-agenda.html

I don’t want her as a VP candidate.

raiderdav on August 11, 2008 at 11:28 AM

In Alaska, the government takes 75% of the price on a barrel of oil at current prices

What does this mean, exactly? Is the suggestion that Alaska gov’t takes $90.00 of taxes for every $120.00 bbl of oil that a company in Alaska sells? Seriously?

I think I’m missing some of the finer points of the argument (and no, I didn’t read the PI article)…can someone explain what actually is being taxed at a 75% rate?

jwehman on August 11, 2008 at 11:34 AM

Based on his scathing rhetoric, Obama would really stick it to the oil companies, stifle domestic exploration, force us to buy from foreign markets, hurt our national security, and drive up gas prices. But Obama doesn’t care. He’s with the Pelosis who want to “save the planet”, which in terms of oil independence will make our country weaker. Now I can see Palin’s interest in opening up ANWR. It would mean a huge infusion of cash into her state.

Paul-Cincy on August 11, 2008 at 11:58 AM

Just wondering: Do royalties = taxes? When we are throwing out figures of 50% and 75% tax on oil produced on state and federal lands, is that including the normal royalty payments to the land owner.

If someone comes into my land and drills they are cutting me a check. Now either this will be a flat fee or, more likely, a participation in the profits. The contract I’d draw up would be an increasing participation for the landowner as the price of oil goes up. In other words, my cut would be pretty small at $20 per barrel because it probably cost $12-18 a barrel in capital costs(spread out along the life of the well) to drill the well in the first place so the producer has to have incentive to drill. However, with every dollar of increase in oil price I would want my participation to increase a more than proportionate amount. Therefore, at $20 per barrell I’d want $1-4 per barell, but at $40 per barrel I’d want $12 per barrel. (Please excuse the pre-2003 numbers but these are the numbers from the last oil contract I worked on like this.)

If these producers are drilling on State and Federal land, I would expect them to pay the same type of fees that they would pay a private landowner. Those fees aren’t taxes, but rather just a cost of taking commodities from the property. If the State or Federal Gov’t didn’t charge these royalties, why would any producer ever drill on private land again?

Therefore, the inclusion of Royalties in the definition of taxes is misleading in this article. Royalties and taxes are not the same thing. All money going to the government is not a tax.

As for the Palin tax increase. I looks like typical escalating royalties were called “taxes” so that oil companies can then use those “taxes” to offset some of their federal taxes or for other accounting uses. I’m not trying to defend “windfall” taxes but I’m not certain that this expenditure can be described as a “tax” let alone that it is a “windfall tax.”

It should be noted that this is not a defense on Obama’s federal windfall tax, which I have not examined. So called “windfall” taxes are usually ill-advised and messy from a business planning prospective, because they inject uncertainty and risk into business decisions, when one goal of government should be to reduce uncertainty.

New_Jersey_Buckeye on August 11, 2008 at 11:59 AM

It seems Ms. Palin has forgot the 1st rule of REPUBLICANS, taxes BAD, incentives GOOD… Now people STOP acting like DEMS , and going for the WRAPPING PAPER, and not the package (see EDWARDS). She may have problems running for office in ALASKA…

pueblo1032 on August 11, 2008 at 12:11 PM

They take 75%?! Good grief, no wonder we’re in a crisis. It isn’t enough to open new fields if we are going to take all the profits.

PattyJ on August 11, 2008 at 12:13 PM

I heard that this was done to correct the breaks they’d gotten due to the corruption of past administrations.

It's Vintage, Duh on August 11, 2008 at 12:17 PM

To quote Bill Murray in the early part of “Stripes”:

And then, depression set in.

thirteen28 on August 11, 2008 at 12:19 PM

Bad public policy, and targeted at one of the most economically significant industries in her State (possibly the most significant between revenues, tax take, employment, etc.).

That’s really too bad.

I do want to hear her justification for the whole thing, though. It needs to go beyond the size of the rebate checks for sure.

DrSteve on August 11, 2008 at 12:43 PM

Just wondering: Do royalties = taxes? When we are throwing out figures of 50% and 75% tax on oil produced on state and federal lands, is that including the normal royalty payments to the land owner.

So what? Alaska cut itself a sweetheart deal by “buying” a bunch of land up north from the eskimos or something, getting the feds to pay for the pipeline to cart the oil south, and then charging the oil companies royalties on the oil. The return on investment for Alaska is on about the same order as Hillary’s return on cattle futures. Why does Alaska need to continue to profit from its sweetheart deal AND impose windfall profit taxes on top of it? It’s just confiscatory taxation.

Outlander on August 11, 2008 at 12:43 PM

Outlander on August 11, 2008 at 12:43 PM

Are you just upset because your state won’t do the same for you?

ConservativePartyNow on August 11, 2008 at 12:49 PM

I am incredibly stupid when it comes to economics, but some good arguments favouring Palin can be found in the comments here.

Damian G. on August 11, 2008 at 1:12 PM

Well that just lost it for me. Taxing the oil companyies really means taking money from the other states.

- The Cat

MirCat on August 11, 2008 at 1:43 PM

Eh. Nobody’s perfect. Hopefully she’ll learn (or already has).

I’d still consider voting for McCain if she or another good VP candidate gets the spot. Otherwise, I’m not sure for whom I’ll vote.

eforhan on August 11, 2008 at 1:46 PM

Gov’r Palin just made an amateur mistake.
That happens.
Give her and the other great Gov’r who made one recently another 4 years and they’ll be the dream team. Jindal-Palin 2012: Because nobody does it better!

HotAirJosef on August 11, 2008 at 1:54 PM

Second look at not Palin?

OneGyT on August 11, 2008 at 2:49 PM

Looks like it’s going to have to be Mike Huckabee!

SaintOlaf on August 11, 2008 at 3:01 PM

Mccain/Huckabee VS Obama/Palin

SaintOlaf on August 11, 2008 at 3:02 PM

Ok, I was worried about this then I read some analysis from a link posted above. This makes me feel a little better.

The Alaskan tax system basically, because it has a progressive rate, basically says that oil companies can make about the same amount of net profit per barrel of oil whether the price is $80 or $120 per barrel. It’s not exactly the same, but it’s pretty close.

Now, there is an incentive inherent in this to drill more. Drilling more means more supply. More supply means lower oil prices. Lower oil prices means a lower tax rate per barrel. But, and this is the important part, an oil company in theory would make more money (more total profits) through more drilling because they’d be selling more barrels of oil.

As an aside, there’s also an incentive towards greater efficiency. The tax takes effect after something like $25 or $30, which is considered the break even cost for a barrel of oil. If a company can figure out how to be more efficient and how to retrieve that oil for $20 per barrel, for example, then there’s an additional savings.

By contrast, a windfall profits tax addresses those total profits. The idea is to look at how much a company makes in total profits for a quarter and, depending upon conditions, to assess an additional tax.

Now, I still think, as a matter of political perception, that the language to use is that Palin is against oil companies getting per barrel tax incentives that they got at $60 or $80 per barrel. But, if the oil companies drill and prices go down, then those tax incentives or rebates come back into force. The idea is that everyone wins: If oil companies drill more, then prices go down. If they sell more barrels, then their total profit is better. And, if the state still gets its money (lower tax per barrel of oil but more barrels of oil).

Oil companies will say that it provides a disincentive to explore, but the reality is that the federal government won’t allow them to explore where the oil is. If that obstacle were removed, then there most assuredly is an incentive to explore, as oil companies would realize even greater total profits through greater supply.

That’s the theory . . . not a huge fan in practice because a progressive per barrel tax structure can be confused for a traditional windfall profits tax.

EduardoOTI on August 11, 2008 at 3:14 PM

75%?? Really? My God, that is a lot. I think some folks up north got greedy.

And Jiang, McCain’s environmental policy is not a windfall profit tax. Surely you know the difference.

Terrye on August 11, 2008 at 4:46 PM

EduardoOTI on August 11, 2008 at 3:14 PM

You mean there’s another side to the story? Imagine that.

This is an attempt by a liberal paper to push Obama’s tax plan by unfairly comparing it to Alaska’s “Republican” plan. It’s fine to post this article as a means of starting a discussion, but it would’ve been nice to include an explanation of the Alaska plan and the differences.

Every leader, including Reagan, has things on their record that some would describe as “liberal”. It would be factually correct, but grossly out of context, to say that Reagan supported amnesty.

Palin is specifically asked about the “windfall” tax here (by a guy who has since endorsed her for VP, I might add):

http://www.redlasso.com/ClipPlayer.aspx?id=8379cb23-af0c-46b4-b914-1824869087f9

More info on taxes:

http://www.gov.state.ak.us/aces/aces_about.php

Mr. Wednesday Night on August 11, 2008 at 7:14 PM

Mr. Wednesday Night on August 11, 2008 at 7:14 PM

Here’s the reality of ACES after BP decided to drill Liberty oil field on federal land instead of state.

“If this were on state lands, it’s doubtful we’d have been able to move it forward,” Doug Suttles, BP Alaska’s president said. “Alaska is a very high-cost environment for the industry.”

You can try to spin it any way you want but the bottom line is, because of Palin’s massive corporate tax rates it doesn’t make investing on state land worthwhile.

lowandslow on August 11, 2008 at 8:35 PM

How very Obama-esque!

BallisticBob on August 11, 2008 at 9:30 PM

lowandslow

Have you been trolling over at the Palin for VP site? That exact same thing was posted there, verbatim.

More facts:

http://bulletproofdiction.wordpress.com/2008/08/11/the-windfall-profits-tax-and-gov-palin-non-issue/

Mr. Wednesday Night on August 12, 2008 at 12:43 AM

Mr. Wednesday Night on August 12, 2008 at 12:43 AM

No that wasn’t me, someone just copied and pasted my comment. Can’t say I blame them, It appears the posters at Palin for VP live in some kind of fantasy land and should be aware of some actual facts. It seems the argument you guys are making is “it really isn’t a WFP tax, by the strict definition of the word”. Call it what you want it’s still a massive corporate tax increase on oil companies based on nothing but populist politics and ultimately leads to less iess investment by the industry, which helps no one. It’s Liberal Economics 101.

lowandslow on August 12, 2008 at 7:29 AM

It’s Liberal Economics 101.

No, that’s not what it is. It’s intra-Republican warfare 101: When in doubt, they’re a liberal! Watching the primaries, you’d have thought all of the GOP contenders were socialists by the things they said about each other.

Our best chance to keep Obama out of power is Palin on the ticket. A lot of respected people, from Evangelicals to Beltway pundits to pollsters agree.

Mr. Wednesday Night on August 12, 2008 at 8:26 AM

The Corner has just linked to this post.

Sarah has some splainin to do.

corona on August 29, 2008 at 11:46 AM

Corono, did you actually READ what The Corner link says? Or the link there to my blog, which explodes the notion that there’s no difference between Palin and Obama on windfall taxes for oil companies?

Do you realize that the Alaska tax in question is a severance tax, not even an income tax?

Beldar on August 29, 2008 at 8:46 PM

In addition to the succinct explanation by Beldar and others that this is a progressive tax on sunk cost production- as Beldar stresses, this is severance with the incentives properly set up, not “windfall profits”- it must be remembered that part of this affair was a club over the head to the old ljne large companies that had owned the fields for decades, and had operated through carelessness and bribery to milk them without really investing. Remember that Exxon didn’t maintain their areas and caused a big spill (Iat the old profit rates), and they were not developing on opld leased lands either until Palin initiated activity to cancel some mineral rights licenses. Suddenly, AFTER the new tax structure, Exxon and BP decided to develop those fields. This is an on-going game of “chicken” between Palin and BP, Exxon, and Shell over hwo runs Alaska.

The Seattle PI article quotes are from press releases put out by the companies, not even-handed analyses- watch what people do with their money, not what they say they are going to do. If the leases were actually terminated for lack of diligence (they should have been 15 years ago), there would be a long line of companies of all sizes lined up to bid on them. Don’t be fooled by the usual fussing from conservative absolutists. There is more than one conservative and capitalist public policy.

MNKurmudge on September 12, 2008 at 2:25 PM

The facts per Ed.

Knucklehead on June 20, 2011 at 11:53 AM

Not really the “facts,” are they?
And that was written in August 2008 when everyone, including Ed, was speculating about Palin’s position on the issues no matter how far afield it took them from national reality.

Jenfidel on June 20, 2011 at 11:59 AM

The Corner Romney Central has just linked to this post.

corona on August 29, 2008 at 11:46 AM
FIFY.
What does Governor Mitt “Global Warming” Romney have to say about “Drill, baby, drill?”

Jenfidel on June 20, 2011 at 12:02 PM

it’s still a massive corporate tax increase on oil companies based on nothing but populist politics and ultimately leads to less iess investment by the industry, which helps no one. It’s Liberal Economics 101.

lowandslow on August 12, 2008 at 7:29 AM

Uh, no.
It’s already been proven on this very thread that it’s based on the charter of the state of AK, not “populist politics,” and that it’s led to more investment by Big Oil, not less.
Seems you’re also forgetting Sarah’s $40 BILLION pipeline contract, as well.

Jenfidel on June 20, 2011 at 12:20 PM