Bailout bill passes despite pork

Spinnaker

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The Senate and Congress recently approved the contentious H.R. 1424 – legislation that is purported to bring stability back to the market.

Why then is this “dire” legislation laden with pork from environmental issues to motorsport racing to rural school subsidies?

Congress initially rejected the bailout bill Sept. 29, and the Senate quickly went to work crafting an amendment with the aim of winning representatives through earmarks and pork spending.

If unprecedented spending of tax payers’ money to solve this “imminent crisis” was not enough, these representatives needed further spending to ease their doubts on the amount of money they were spending.

The Senate now believes a study on “specific tax provisions that have the largest effects on carbon and other greenhouse gas emissions” should be addressed, according to financial bailout bill S. Amdt. 5685, which passed 74-25 Oct. 1.

Sec. 117 authorizes a joint study with the National Academy of Sciences to the tune of $1.5 million to study the possible correlation between the financial crises and greenhouse gases. Extreme environmentalists are using this bailout package as a vehicle to further their agenda, which in the end will make energy more expensive and thus deepen the economic downturn.

Sec. 503 is an exemption on certain types of wooden arrows from an excise tax, which will cost $2 million during the next 10 years, according to a statement by the Joint Committee on Taxation.

Sec. 317 extends a $100 million tax credit to motorsport track owners when claiming expenditures on their facilities.

Sec. 301 modifies and extends a research tax break to corporations conducting experimentation and market research within the U.S. The estimated two-year cost is $19 billion.

Sec. 601 authorizes Payment In Lieu of Taxes (PILT) to rural school districts. The $3.3 billion subsidy is supposed to offset a lack of logging taxes, which throughout the 20th century, provided funding to rural school districts.

Sec. 502 gives the movie and television industry an estimated $478 million tax credit during the next 10 years for filming inside the U.S.

Sec. 309 grants a $33 million tax credit to businesses that operate inside America Samoa. The credit is geared toward maintaining a productive business atmosphere in the American territory.

Sec. 211 gives business owners a $10 million tax credit if they reimburse employees for expenses related to bicycling to work.

These pork projects are a prime example of what Congress does best: spend other people’s money. In this case, this was the easiest legislative vehicle to add pork to, as representatives would have limited veto bargaining due to an overwhelming level of support for the chief aspects of the bill – the actual Wall Street bailout.