Thursday, January 3, 2013

Cronywatch: The vote-buying in the Cliff deal

For those of you struggling to keep track at home, crony "capitalism" is alive and well in the just-passed fiscal cliff deal.

The Post’s Brad Plumer points out that the “fiscal cliff” bill that passed Congress on Tuesday contained a bonanza for single-issue lobbyists, extending supports for Puerto Rican rum distillers, Hollywood studios, tribal-lands coal, electric-scooter makers and other corporate interests that Congress will subsidize through the tax code for another year or two. It’s easy to blame some combination of policy inertia and congressional distraction for the largely rote reauthorization of some of these items; most lawmakers simply didn’t have the capacity to think much about the relatively small tax loophole for NASCAR racetracks. Yet that’s not true of some of the biggest-ticket items, which have been the subject of reform discussions all year long.
Electric-scooter makers? Egads.

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