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The Best of Notable Quotables; December 20, 1993

Vol. Six; No. 26


The Henry Luce Would Roll Over In His Grave Award



“The real story is the proposed gas tax is far too low...There’s only one problem with the 4.3 cents-per-gal. gas tax the Senate has proposed: it’s too little...Where it says 4.3 cents, they should add two words: a year. And maybe a third word: forever. For decades, we’d still be paying vastly less for gas than our competitors (in Europe and Asia, gas goes for nearly $4 per gal.). For decades, the hike in the tax would be more or less canceled out by available improvements in fuel efficiency – so it would cost no more to drive a mile.”

Time “Money Angles” columnist Andrew Tobias, July 26 issue. (Italics his)


Runners-up:


“So Clinton is right to back off his plan for a middle-class tax cut and right again to ‘revisit’ the proposal to increase gasoline taxes, regressive levies he routinely dismissed as unfair during the campaign.”

Time Chief Political Correspondent Michael Kramer, January 25.

“We need to raise taxes...As for gasoline – which costs about $3.75 per gal. throughout Europe – Ross Perot was right. Phase in a 50-cent tax over five years, and you raise $50 billion a year.”

Time “Money Angles” columnist Andrew Tobias, January 25.

“When Clinton’s ‘Climate Change Action Plan’ finally debuted last week, environmentalists could muster only faint praise....There are two major omissions: the plan does nothing to raise auto fuel-economy standards, and it contains no energy-tax hikes to boost conservation.”  

Time Associate Editor Michael D. Lemonick, November 1.