Towards a Better Tax System

What is an ideal tax system? Perhaps one that lies in the background, raising revenue fairly in a way that cannot be avoided, that discourages no behaviour except undesirable behaviour, avoids unsustainable booms whilst stimulating productive activity. Such a tax system can be designed. The sort of things that could be taxed include:

  • Rents 
    • Land 
    • Oil (road duty) 
    • Radio spectrum 
    • Natural Monopolies
  • Bads 
    • Existing Ones (Alcohol, Tobacco) 
    • Any additional legalised drugs 
    • Sugar 
    • Congestion (road duty + refund) 
    • Carbon
  • Debt & Catastrophic Risk
    • Government Debt and Money
    • Risk 
    • Shadow banks, Pseudo-money and Bank Balance Sheets 
    • State lending 
    • Infrastructure development

Meditiations on the Fallacy of Unlimited Agency

This post is about a difficult problem. The problem is difficult because I wrote this draft in 2009 and I've forgotten what I wanted to say! :)

Solar Panels



"10 square metres of solar panels will produce around 16,000 kilowatt hours per year of electricity (200 Watts average / 1600 Watts Peak). Assuming a delivered electricity value of 10p/kwh (after carbon taxes and distribution costs), the value of this electricity would be around £1600/year. Assuming a 0% required rate of return and a long lifetime the value of the panel £16,000. Therefore, if solar panels can be installed at a total cost of under £10/WattPeak (£16,000 for all our panels), then they can be (just) economic in the UK."

BTW You can install a solar roof for £5/WattPeak in a good location with a large roof. http://www.cscuk.org.uk/docs/SolarRoofs.pdf

The Marvels of Life

One of the marvels of life is that it exists at all. It would seem to be against the laws of thermodynamics for something as ordered as life were to exist at all. One of the reasons for it existing is the transfer of negative entropy from the environment.

Back To Blogging

Hello! I'm back. I'll use this blog to prepare some thoughts before relaunching in a more serious way soon! :)