Free Markets, Free People

Government, wasteful spending and crony capitalism – whatta surprise

Are you wearing a cotton shirt? Undies?  Neal Boortz is wondering:

Now while you’re sitting there surrounded by all that cottony comfort, I thought you might like to hear about the $20 million dollars that was spent last year by the Cotton Council International.  Spent where?  Spent in India, that’s where.  Spent on what?  Well …how about a reality show?  Sounds like a good idea, doesn’t it?  $20 million for an Indian reality show.

Not much right?  But here’s the point.  This is something repeated over and over and over again through unnecessary programs such as this using your tax dollars.  Crony capitalism.  The Cotton Council International needs your tax money like you need a hole in your head.  They have members, let them finance the Cotton Council International.  My bet is you wouldn’t see money spent like that.

Want to cut waste?  Here’s a perfect example of where to begin cutting.  As Boortz emphasizes:

Oh … and the $20 million? That came from YOU. It’s taxpayer money. Part of the Department of Agriculture’s Market Access Program.

Now just remember that $20 million. That $20 million represents the entire federal income tax liability of about 2000 American families. That money is money taken from these families that could have been used to pay some past-due bills, get a home out of foreclosure, pay for a family vacation, or put that new roof on the house. But those families didn’t have that money to spend. They didn’t have it because some sharp lobbyist for the Cotton Council managed to talk some political types to seize that money instead and send it to India to swath some Indian babes in brightly colored sarongs for an Indian TV reality show.

Then there’s this little beauty for you to consider.

Amtrak, the heavily government subsidized and controlled passenger rail system, sent out this email to its customers:




Yes, it says exactly what you think it says.  If you join a lobbying group that works to increase Amtrak subsidies, you will get a discount.  Those who don’t join the lobbying group will pay full fare (such that it is).  Or as the recipient of this email says:

Whatever you think of government funding for train travel in the United States, is it problematic that a government corporation will give people discounts if they pay to join an organization that will lobby the government for more subsidies?

Put another way, Americans who pay to support more subsidies get charged less to travel on subsidized trains than those who oppose the subsidies. Two classes of citizens, based on political beliefs, when riding the train?

Apparently that’s fine.

But remember, any cuts we make in spending will lay off police, teachers and fireman.  Because everything else that’s being spent right now is both critical and necessary.


Twitter: @McQandO

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15 Responses to Government, wasteful spending and crony capitalism – whatta surprise

  • O, what a tangled web we weave, when first we FLUCK with markets…

    AMTRAK is a Nixon-era fascist project.  It perfectly reflects classical fascist economic theory.
    The various Federally subsidized this and thats are all from the Progressive Era and New Deal Collectives.
    Me, I oppose even government funding for “basic research”.  If that went away, it would be replaced by people with money and an interest.  There should be no such field as “agricultural economics”, since so much of it is about the interplay of government programs and actual economics.  Do away with all the programs.
    The argument over tax deductions as “subsidies’?  Easily solved.  Do away with any Federal tax on businesses.  Those taxes are just ways to get to the consumers (or rubes) at any rate.
    No tax money should be redistributed to any entity; person or thing.  (See the period?)

  • But you have to remember, and it’s deliberate, when government cuts workers, they have this annoying tendency to punish the voters/tax payers for their arrogance in demanding control by eliminating those positions that have the most direct contact with the tax payers/voters on a regular basis, those positions that actually, conceivably, provide a service the tax payer is willing to pay for.  So rather than cut the staff of 10 manning the paper shredder in the basement of city hall, they fire a couple of firemen, teachers that annoy them and aren’t protected and lay off some of the less obnoxious and corrupt cops on the force.
    Then they wring their hands when houses burn or a crime is committed (like those things didn’t happen BEFORE the lay offs) and sadly point out that it’s a result of the budget cut the voters demanded and their hands are tied.  Their crony brother-in-law who mows the median strips and the verges at a tidy profit continues to provide that service to the government.
    Admittedly fictitious generalizations, but reality tends to work roughly in this direction.

  • When there is money to spend, it will be spent. Then the next budget, they can say they need even more. It never comes out of anyone’s pocket. It is an endless magical spigot

    • I see no reason to think government handles the budget any differently than a lot of departmental budgets I’ve seen.  You never turn money back in at the end of the year because your reward will be to have next year’s budget cut.  Talk about a sad and disappointing introduction to the business world as a wide eyed innocent.

  • Well, who do you think pays for lobbyist for private corporations?  The consumer, e.g., the taxpayer.  Of course, we might say that the stockholder, who buys the stock, gets a rebate for some of this when the receive the dividend—and the non-share holder does not.  Same thing, just a little differently, that’s all.

    • Simply astounding nonsense.  Chock-a-block with stupid lies.

    • Wow. Uh, your most nonsensical yet. Congrats.

    • A very significant difference between private corporations and government even in your little off in left field comment is NO corporation can come to your house with armed agents and take your house for failing to buy their product.  Try not paying your property taxes, or income taxes.
      But keep up the good work, your beclowning continues apace.

    • A little more spending money for a quick effort to argue the opposing side?  You’re slacking off, not even trying very hard.  I don’t think they’re getting their money’s worth.

      • “the opposing side”. “their money’s worth”
        Given that McQ was highlighting gross waste of our tax dollars (Cotton council) and using our tax dollars to figure out how to get more of our tax dollars from us, I have to conclude Tad doesn’t argue the opposing side, Tad’s just randomly dropping opinion turds like a progressive herd animal.
        McQ never typed the words “Democrat” or “President” so a not so careful analysis would conclude he’s against government waste and cronyism from ANY party or position.
        Tad on the other hand seems to feel this was an attack on good government and that corporations are only conservative, Republican and for Romney, which is going to surprise the hell out of the Greenpeace Corporations.
        Tad it seems is just for MORE government and more government waste.
        Indeed, they are not getting their money’s worth from dear Tad.

        • Indeed, they are not getting their money’s worth from dear Tad.

          Unless they have plenty of cash to pay people to try to gum up the works with any sort of comments.
          It’s like a gang banger doing a drive by, shooting several times and not hitting anything but a dog a block away just to show the colors.

        • Unfortunately, you wouldn’t recognize a valid argument if it hit you in the face—which it has.  I was trying to decipher your statements to figure of if I had an argument with them, or not.  I was unsuccessful.

          • Wait, you didn’t use ANY talking points in that comment.  You didn’t mention politics at all.
            In my opinion, that shouldn’t count for your pay-per-comment gig.