It could have been a classic presidential debate moment, John McCain turning to Barack Obama and saying, "Isn't it true that you want Americans to pay higher energy prices?" Right in the middle of an economic downturn, that's the last thing most of us want to do. But that is exactly what Obama wants us to do.
Here is what Obama told Iowa public television last year (courtesy of Little Green Footballs): "I think it is important to send some price signals to change behavior. It's not going to be painless. Power plants are going to have to adjust how they generate power. They will pass on those costs to consumers.... A lot of us who can afford it are going to pay more for a unit of electricity; over time the electricity bill goes back down as technology catches back up."
Me: See, Obama's little-discussed cap-and-trade plan would raise costs on businesses for using energy, like the entire coal industry—and they would then pass on those costs to you and me. Those "price signals" effectively are $100 billion a year in energy taxes, which would wipe out Obama's middle-class tax cut/credit.