Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
June 30, 2009
POLITICS: The Favor Factory

I had meant to link earlier to Francis Cianfrocca's piece on the cap-and-trade bill and how - from what little anyone knows of what's in it - it vastly expands the federal government's role in doling out rewards and punishments to particular private businesses, a role that inherently brings with it a cesspool of corruption. Also worth noting is the Democrats' strategy of trying to blitz through Congress as many things as possible at once so as to minimize the possibility of public debate (the cap and trade vote being held while the press was covering the Michael Jackson story).

Posted by Baseball Crank at 7:28 PM | Politics 2009 | Comments (7) | TrackBack (0)
Comments

I hope this cap and trade bill fails for a number of reasons (and can't see how it can pass the Senate) but I wouldn't go so far as calling it a cesspool of corruption.

Even if you like cap and trade, it doesn't make any sense for the US to do this unilaterally. Great, you cut carbon at the expense of the US economy, and there is no net reduction because the rest of the world gets a free pass. We shouldn't do it if no one else is willing to sign up for it.

As for the subsidies for certain US industries, well, that actually makes sense in the context of this bill since they are unilaterally suffering to the benefit of their foreign competitors. But it's predictable what a mess this will make. Other countries will undeniably raise a stink at the WTO for any tariffs or subsidies and use this as an excuse to pass their own.

The sanest way to this, if you want it, is to get an international agreement. And good luck with that. While the rest of the world condemns the US in words for our carbon output, none of those countries are willing to sacrifice their economic growth either.

Posted by: MVH at July 1, 2009 7:17 AM

Crank,
You don't think the government should punish corporations when they break the law?
Who should? Certainly not the corporations themselves. Their job is to maximize profits for their owners and shareholders. PERIOD.
If that means polluting the air we breathe and the water we drink, so be it. As long as it increases profits. who's going to stop them?
It's ABSOLUTELY the job of the government to hold these corporations accountable.
De-regulation is a failure when combined with pure capitalism. It's been proven time and again that the corporations won't police themselves. Why? It's not their job.

Change "In God We Trust" to "Slow on the Uptake" for truth in advertising reasons.

Posted by: Berto at July 1, 2009 7:49 AM

Berto, who are you even arguing against? Who said that corporations shouldn't be punished when they break the law?

Posted by: DKH at July 1, 2009 12:45 PM

Berto:

The punishments being talked about here are for, among other things, moving production out of the country, a completely legal and rational response to government policies that significantly increase the cost of doing business here.

Posted by: Joel in Seattle at July 1, 2009 3:10 PM

The issue is the proliferation of laws in the first instance. The more politics is in money, the more influence money will want in politics, and the more individual politicians will use that as an opportunity for personal or political profit. Big government is corrupt government, by definition.

Posted by: Crank at July 1, 2009 3:19 PM

Crank,
So how do we handle things like businesses polluting waterways with waste from their manufacturing plants, for instance? At what point is government "big".
Sounds like you think we should all police ourselves.
How do you see this working in real life?

As an analogy, what are your thoughts on traffic lights in cities and towns? Do you think government shouldn't be allowed to put up stoplights on roadways. After all, it's not in the best interest of drivers to crash into each other. Aren't traffic lights just another big government intrusion susceptible to corruption by politicians who "get in bed" with the traffic light manufacturers and distibutors?

I guess my question is this: what is big government? At what point does government become too big? or is this just another "government should be using their resources on only things I want them to, when they stray from my wants they become 'too big' " argument?

Note: notice how I used traffic lights and not some other blatantly corrupt areas of what you might call "big government" like the Dept. of Defense and the military-industrial complex.

Posted by: Berto at July 2, 2009 10:07 AM

"Deep Throat" in Watergate told Woondward and Bernstein to "follow the money".

On Cap & Trade, it leads to Chris Dodd's allies and Chris Dodd's wife

http://thenextright.com/ironman/the-jackie-dodd-windfall-act

Posted by: Ironman at July 2, 2009 7:17 PM
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