For my Thanksgiving treat, here's my list of five “Turkeys on the Hill” — legislation that is particularly onerous for consumers, taxpayers, and citizens — by increasing taxpayers' burdens, rewarding “special interests,” reducing choice, expanding government control, or decreasing health and safety.
1) The 2007 Farm Bill (H.R. 2419) Both the House bill (passed) and the Senate bill (being considered) continue and expand the bloated farm subsidy programs, increase costs to taxpayers, provide more funding for the misguided biofuels programs, and provide taxpayer handouts even to rich farmers. This $286 billion bill, according to the USDA, includes “$37 billion in budget gimmicks and increased taxes." 2) Energy bills 2007 (S. 1419; H.R. 6) Both the House and the Senate have passed energy bills that increase prices for consumers on an array of goods, including gasoline, automobiles and food, while doing nothing to increase supplies of affordable energy. The bills would vastly increase the renewable fuels boondoogles, would lead to higher energy prices for consumers, restrict consumer choice in some household products, and would raise the corporate average fuel economy standards (CAFE), forcing consumers into smaller, less safe cars. 3) Mortgage Reform and Anti-Predatory Lending Act of 2007 (H.R. 3915): The bill would limit access to home mortgages in response to disruptions in the market for so-called “subprime” loans. Lenders, rather than applicants themselves, would be required to determine whether loans are considered appropriate for the home buyer's circumstances. Sure to hit lower-income people and new entries into the credit market the hardest. 4) The Law of the Sea Treaty (Treaty Doc. 103-39) According to the United Nations, LOST “lays down a comprehensive regime of law and order in the world's oceans and seas establishing rules governing all uses of the oceans and their resources. It enshrines the notion that all problems of ocean space are closely interrelated and need to be addressed as a whole.” LOST would harm U.S. interests: It would threaten U.S. sovereignty, facilitate United Nations global governance, give the UN international taxing authority, and accomplish backdoor implementation of the Kyoto Protocol. 5) Consumer Product Safety Commission Reform Act (S. 2045) In the wake of reports of unsafe imported products, including children's toys, this bill would unleash the power of state attorneys general, set up certification systems for children's products that will increase their costs and may lead to substitution of less safe products, and encourage disgruntled employees to get back at their manufacturer employers. Hope your Thanksgiving turkeys are better than these!