“Cap-and-cash-back” — A new Ponzi scheme?

Came across this in-depth analysis on Reuters for President-elect Obama to consider. It’s a new twist on the cap and trade scheme for carbon emissions. It’s called “cap-and-dividends” or “cap-and-cash-back.”

First, government puts a cap on carbon emissions from the “small number of companies that bring carbon into the economy.” Small number of companies? Oil companies, electricity plants and other utilities, airlines and other transportation, manufacturers of products and food, etc., etc. Second, the permits would be auctioned off. Third, all of the carbon revenues would be returned back to “the people” — those who were paying higher prices for their fuel, heating and air-conditioning, food, etc. — in the form of “monthly cash dividends.”

How to fund those new energy programs promised if the emissions revenues are going out in dividends? Easy. Just fund those programs “from other sources,” the article says, such as “long-term debt.” But we already know all about that, and how easy it is, don’t we?

Sounds like a new Ponzi scheme to me.