Taxing hybrids: the DOY! proposal of the month

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has proposed a vehicle tax on hybrid cars in order to make up for the fact that hybrid drivers pay less in gas taxes. The reason? The Highway Trust Fund is facing insolvency -- especially after Bush's $286.4 billion highway bill (the one that included the Alaskan bridge to nowhere).

The AP.

So one of the solutions is to tax fuel efficient cars?

How about this: tax the shit out of SUV owners who regularly carry fewer than five passengers. Or what about taxing car manufacturers who aren't developing alternative fuel vehicles. Or what about taxing high emission vehicles.

The Earth wins. The Highway Trust Fund wins. Everybody wins. And the increased tax burden is placed on drivers who are actually causing more harm to the environment and the highways.

I bought a Prius four weeks ago and as I attempt to convince friends and family to buy hybrid vehicles, the aspect of hybrid ownership that receives the most attention is the tax incentive.

Sadly, the average American isn't going to trade in their Saudi-Mobile for a hybrid just because they're partial zero emission vehicles or because they're better for the environment.

The average American wants to save money. They like 50+ MPG. They like the low fuel costs. They like the $2,000 federal tax break. If the government actually taxes drivers for owning hybrids, the incentive goes away and the progress made by the popularity of hybrid cars is lost.