Battlepanda: Welfare Queens riding lear jets


Always trying to figure things out with the minimum of bullshit and the maximum of belligerence.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Welfare Queens riding lear jets

George Monbiot is cool:

They bleat about the free market, then hold out their begging bowls
In his book Perverse Subsidies, published in 2001, Professor Norman Myers estimates that when you add the direct payments US corporations receive to the wider costs they oblige society to carry, you come up with a figure of $2.6 trillion, or roughly five times as much as the profits they make. As well as the $362bn the OECD countries were paying for farming when his book was published (or rather, as we have seen, for activities masquerading as farming) they were shelling out about $71bn on fossil fuels and nuclear power and a staggering $1.1 trillion on road transport. Worldwide, governments pay companies $25bn a year to destroy the Earth's fisheries, and $14bn to wreck our forests.

The energy policy bill the Bush administration drove through Congress this summer handed a further $2.9bn to the coal industry, $4.3bn to nuclear power and $1.5bn to oil and gas firms. According to the Democratic congressman Henry Waxman, the oil subsidy "was mysteriously inserted in the final energy legislation after the legislation was closed to further amendment ... Obviously, it would be a serious abuse to secretly slip [in] such a costly and controversial provision." Most of the money, he discovered, would be administered by "a private consortium located in the district of majority leader Tom DeLay ... The leading contender for this contract appears to be the Research Partnership to Secure Energy for America consortium", whose board members include Marathon Oil and Halliburton. "

Hat Tip: Brad Spangler.