Diane Feinstein and Susan Collins are disappointed in the political process. Have they been kidnapped and replaced by zombies? Sleeping for the last 40 years or so? They can't believe how the process actually works:
It's amazing how quickly a good idea can go bad in Washington. In
January, we joined with Sen. Charles Schumer to introduce a bill that
would allow Americans to trade in gas-guzzling cars in exchange for
vouchers worth up to $4,500 toward the purchase of vehicles with
greatly improved fuel economy. This legislation was modeled after programs in California and Texas that improved fuel efficiency, reduced
pollution, and helped easily identifiable groups of Americans explicitly while the harm and costs were spread widely across the general taxpaying public stimulated auto sales.
Our "Cash for Our Friends in Detroit Clunkers" proposal was a win-win for the environment
and the economy. Then Detroit auto industry lobbyists got involved.
Boy, that sure shocked us. Why would they do that? Soon a rival bill emerged in the House, tailored perfectly to the auto
The House bill was written so quickly that one of its main
components — a provision that would have excluded any vehicle
manufactured overseas — had to be removed because it violated trade
laws. Too bad. That would really have helped our "economy." Those nasty trade agreements sure can prevent a good law from getting even better. But the worst item on the auto industry's wish list is still at
the heart of the bill — a provision that undermines fuel-efficiency
On Tuesday, the House approved this legislation, which would
subsidize the purchase of a new Hummer H3T (16 mpg) or a new Dodge Ram
1500 4×4 truck (15 mpg), but not a two-year-old Ford Focus (27 mpg) or
used Chevy Colorado (20 mpg). A companion bill is pending in the Senate.
Where is the world's smallest violin? You mean the lobbyists actually influenced the bill? And a new Hummer gets preference over a used Ford Focus? Well that's what happens when you have the wasteful idea of subsidizing new car purchases. It leads to waste. Why are you surprised?
Actually I am surprised. Why didn't they just require all Americans to destroy ALL of their cars every six months. That would be even more helpful to a small select group of politically-important Americans the economy.