Your editorial (March 9), "Oil and Common Sense," was very slippery and contained much nonsense!
You assume that an increase in tax revenues produced by higher gasoline tax rates will reduce federal budget deficits. If federal tax revenues are increased either by imposing new taxes or increasing existing tax rates, it is doubtful that this will translate into deficit reductions.
In the absence of effective controls on federal outlays, experience suggests that increases in non-defense spending will swallow up additional tax revenues. True progress toward permanent deficit reduction will commence when Congress abandons its search for new sources of tax revenues and focuses on creating mechanisms to control federal spending.
Most politicians have recognized a connection between the results of the 1984 presidential election and Walter Mondale's campaign promise to raise taxes. For this reason, gasoline or other energy taxes that appear to be well camouflaged and virtually "painless" are beguiling to many lawmakers. Supposedly, motorists recently accustomed to paying $1.25 per gallon for gasoline will hardly notice and be little harmed by a 25-cent-a-gallon tax that hikes the price back to $1.25.