Saturday, April 4, 2009

Paper Mills Add Unneeded Diesel Fuel Process to Qualify for Tax Money

"Thanks to an obscure tax provision, the United States government stands to pay out as much as $8 billion this year to the ten largest paper companies. And get this: even though the money comes from a transportation bill whose manifest intent was to reduce dependence on fossil fuel, paper mills are adding diesel fuel to a process that requires none in order to qualify for the tax credit. In other words, we are paying the industry--handsomely--to use more fossil fuel. "Which is," as a Goldman Sachs report archly noted, the "opposite of what lawmakers likely had in mind when the tax credit was established.""

Stunning Government Billion-Dollar Giveaway to Paper Companies in the Works | Corporate Accountability and WorkPlace | AlterNet

Do you get it now? Subsidies and incentives don't work. Corporations have giant legal departments to get around these things. And, to make it easy, the laws are so complicated and contradictory, they do it all the time. If you really want to stick it to corporations, make them compete with each other. That's what they try to avoid more than anything. Competing is hard, and has low margins. Lobbying has very high returns on your money, and you don't have to work very hard at it.

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