It is not true that the new subsidies for the purchase of electric vehicles will only benefit the rich. Even if it was, I wouldn’t care.
That’s because the purpose of the $7,500 tax credit is to accelerate the transition to clean energy. It is not to further enrich those who can afford these technologically cool cars. It’s not to help American automakers sell more of them, but if that’s a result, then fine. The point is to stop the planet from burning.
Many on the right like to avoid seeing the bigger picture. At FoxNews.com, David Marcus calls the credit “a luxury subsidy for EVs.” He says that giving potential buyers a $7,500 loan is “like giving everyone a thousand dollar gift card to the Rolex store, great, but where do we get the other 9?”
Well, you either get the other 9, or you don’t get the Rolex. Life is unfair.
It appears that the writer issued his complaints before he had a completed piece of legislation to complain about. The Inflation Reduction Act denies the credit to those with taxable income above $150,000 as a single filer ($300,000 as joint filers). In other words, the really rich don’t get it.
There are also some complaints on the left that not everyone is given a shiny EV. Tamara Sheldon tells Knowable Magazine that she would like to buy an EV, but the cheapest ones are at least three times more expensive than her used VW Jetta. We’re not told how (SET ITAL) used the (END ITAL) Jetta, but you’ll still need some money to buy a new electric car, OK?
Critics would do their argument a favor if they stopped portraying the $60,000 Cadillac Lyriq or Tesla Model Y as typical electric cars. Car and Driver helpfully lists more affordable models. The Chevrolet Bolt EV, for example, starts at $32,495.
There may be a higher upfront cost to buy an electric vehicle, but the savings on gas can make the EV much less expensive over time. For example, driving a fossil-fueled Ford F-150 pickup 15,000 miles would cost the owner $2,900 at current gas prices. The same 15,000 miles on the electric Ford F-150 Lightning Pro would come to $950. Of course, the more you drive it, the better the deal will be.
It seems important for caregivers to exaggerate the environmental concerns associated with EVs. Marcus at Fox notes that you often need fossil fuels to produce the electricity that goes into batteries. As he says, “The electricity that powers these futuristic vehicles doesn’t just flow freely from the sky.”
In fact, many of them do. To the Bible that knew it, wind and sun are like manna from heaven. They are cheap and provide something we are hungry for, clean energy. Renewable energy, including hydro, already produces about 21% of all our energy. The US Energy Information Administration projects that this number will increase to 44% by 2050, and that may be low. At work, renewables could produce 90% of the world’s electricity by 2050, according to the International Energy Agency.
Another nice thing about electric vehicles: Zero tailpipe emissions. We refer to the harmful chemicals that fuel the burning of fossil fuels. In other words, old-fashioned smog.
If bashing Democrats is the real motive behind all this complaining about the EV tax credit, too bad. From time to time, political players have to do things that are good for the country, even if it means agreeing with the other side.
As policy initiatives go, this push to move Americans to electric vehicles is remarkably well-established. Good job.
Follow Froma Harrop on Twitter @FromaHarop. She can be reached at [email protected]. To learn more about Froma Harrop and read features by other Creators writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators website at www.creators.com.