Those who don't know what cap and trade is need to educate themselves. Read the Wikipedia article. The Bill is an attempt to reverse the effects of global warming by curtailing carbon emissions from man-made sources by legislating limits on emissions. It also establishes a market for trading emission allowances to encourage those who comply with the limitations to reduce emissions further so that they can sell their allowances. Wikipedia also discusses that.
To those who think that Al Gore deserves a Nobel Peace Prize, the scheme -- which the Europeans have already adopted -- is one of the key solutions to global warming. But let's check our premises: (1) An epochal change in the earth's climate, global warming, is taking place that is outside of the normal range of the earth's cyclical climate change (if such a thing is determinable), and (2) this unusual change is caused by mankind's industrialization of the planet, which produces carbon emissions that cause the greenhouse effect that will warm the planet to a disastrous extent -- to such an extent that it now requires emergency action to control industry. If you evaluate all of the scientific evidence and are objective, you must acknowledge that neither of these has been scientifically proven. So the logical foundations of the entire idea of man-made global warming have not been established.
To those supporting the legislation, the notion that global warming needs to be proved by objective evidence to a gnat's eyebrow is silly -- and worse, the calls for proof are part of the capitalists' schemes to escape government oversight so that they can continue to ravage Mother Earth for individual greed, a short-sighted, selfish, sociopathic attitude that is endemic to the capitalist creed: run roughshod over the powerless for personal profit. But rhetoric aside, the legislation establishes a new massive and expensive regulatory construct for which the taxpayers and consumers will have to pay -- based upon unproven premises. And this, at a time when the economy is faltering.
There are many reasons why this Bill should be defeated, not the least of which it its potential to create another bubble. The Heritage Foundation's site catalogues the criticisms of it in great detail.
Al Gore thinks that passage of the Bill will help bring about "global governance." But Sarah Palin agrees with Warren Buffet that "poor people are going to pay a lot more for electricity." (Hat tip to Robert Bidinotto.)
Too much big government is being rammed through Congress without due deliberation. The Democrats, led by Harry ("taxation is voluntary") Reid and Nancy ("Oh happy day, tax the rich") Pelosi, should cease being driven by fascist and socialist idealogues who yearn to bring down the successful and productive, and address the cost of Medicare and Social Security before they throw out more pork to buy the votes of illegal immigrants.
You have read on these pages that the profligate printing of money and out of control deficit spending will create price inflation to an extent not seen since the days of the Continental dollar. And it can happen in the midst of a deep recession or a depression because hyperinflation is a currency event, not an economic event. As wages and prices increase in response to a depreciating currency, taxpayers will experience something called "bracket creep." As your wages increase in a race to keep up with costs, it will push you up into a higher tax bracket so that a larger percentage of your earnings will be claimed by the government, even though you are receiving less value in your paycheck. And, guess what? You will be among the "rich" that have been tapped to pay for the Democrats' expensive new populist pork.
No one who knows anything about Washington believes the balderdash about taxing the rich. Even absent bracket creep, the estimates of the costs of these brave new permanent regulatory and entitlement programs is invariably, grossly understated. When the real figures come in, the Congress will simply raise everyone's taxes or lower the definition of who is rich, or both.
As Yogi might have said, if it doesn't stop somewhere, it will never end.