This weekend, families all across America will celebrate America’s independence with fireworks, swimming pools, friends, family, libations, hamburgers and hot dogs, and a whole host of foods. However the government is likely going to make that more difficult for future holidays as new regulations by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), to ban artificial trans fats, could have an enormous impact on taxpayers, the economy and what choices individuals make when it comes to what to eat not just on the 4th of July, but every day. This new regulation is a clear government over reach and in poor taste. Will donuts and fried chicken become illegal and considered contraband? There are several problems with what the FDA is doing, and regardless of any good intentions the agency may or may not have, another regulation is absolutely not the answer to any concerns over the safety of trans fats. The first problem is that at the core, individuals can make their own choices about what food products they want to put in their body, as opposed to an outright ban that prevents people from making that choice Taxpayers will be hit with an enormous cost as the FDA bureaucracy Is expanded
At midnight on June 30, 2015, the authorization for the Export-Import Bank expired. That means that the 80-year old organization is no longer authorized to make loans. This was a major victory for taxpayers. But, the fight is not over because there is talk that Congress will try to reauthorize the Bank when they return from their 4th of July recess. The following op-ed appeared in Townhall a week before the authorization ran out:
President Barack Obama, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and big business make unlikely bedfellows — but there they are, all snuggled up. Together, they have lined up in opposition to allowing the Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank to expire at the end of this month, as it’s currently set to do. The trio have turned to alarmist “economic catastrophe” messaging to garner support for this behemoth of corporate welfare, while free market conservatives and small government advocates have been urging for the bank’s wind down.
July 1st marks the beginning of the fiscal year for states across the country, and with that comes the end for many legislative sessions where budgets have been completed and difficult choices on spending have been made. Unfortunately, many states have defaulted to the tired and repeated mistake of taxing tobacco products and some legislatures are even looking to go after those who partake in vaping with new taxes on what is a growing industry, the last thing it needs is excise taxes to harm that potential. This is sadly a bipartisan affair, as states run by Democrats and Republicans are getting in on the haphazardly scheme of taxing tobacco and vapor products. Here are some of the states that have done a disservice to the taxpayers that put them in office by enacting these misguided policies that do more harm than good.
Last week the Supreme Court saved Obamacare once again in a disappointing ruling on the King v. Burwell case regarding the legality of Obamacare subsidies provided to the states by the federal government. Not withstanding that ruling, there are still unanswered questions regarding Obamacare, including how Congress was able to qualify for exemptions and taxpayer-subsidies. Recently, the Taxpayers Protection Alliance (TPA) signed onto a coalition letter sent by American Commitment to the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee asking that these records be subpoenaed in order to get to the bottom of how Congress received the exemption.
Earlier this month, the Taxpayers Protection Alliance (TPA) highlighted a report from CTIA (The Wireless Association) that analyzed the direct and indirect value of wireless spectrum on the economy. The findings of the report made clear that wireless spectrum is becoming more valuable to the growing mobile economy. The need for government to release more of it into the private market is undeniable. On the heels of that report, more information has been published this week that builds upon the overall concern on the need for government to free up more spectrum. Two reports were released this week making the case to free up more spectrum.
TPA Reaction to SCOTUS Obamacare Decision
Taxpayer Group Slams Decision to Keep Subsidies, Urges Full RepealWashington, D.C. -
Today, the Taxpayers Protection Alliance (TPA) slammed the United States Supreme Court after a disappointing ruling in King v. Burwell. This ruling on Obamacare is bad for taxpayers and the whole country. Obamacare has been a flawed and failed piece of legislation from the beginning. Today, the Supreme Court deepened the pain of working families as millions of Americans continue to pay for a program that has forced people onto lower quality plans, forced families to lose their preferred coverage, put the privacy of the public at risk, and will cost taxpayers over $1 trillion in just the next decade alone.
Even with this disappointing ruling, TPA will continue to call for a full repeal in the House and Senate so that Washington can encourage incentive-based, private sector solutions to healthcare that will lower costs and provide greater access for all Americans who need quality health care in this country. Obamacare isn’t the answer, and after the continued failure of many key components of the law, bipartisan repeal of specific provisions of the bill, and record unpopularity there should be no doubt that this program needs to end.
On June 22, the United States Postal Service (USPS) announced that they wanted to expand their grocery delivery service to New York City. This announcement comes on the heels of unanswered questions about previous attempts at grocery delivery service, a quarterly loss of $1.5 billion, and a plan to spend $6 billion on a new fleet of trucks. Instead of trying to compete with the private sector to deliver groceries and buy new trucks, the USPS needs to get their fiscal house in order and focus on their core mission: delivering mail. Last October, the Taxpayers Protection Alliance submitted comments to the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) warning about expansion of grocery delivery without knowing the full fiscal impact of such a move. In those comments TPA noted, “Perhaps even more startling, the USPS is near a point of financial collapse losing millions of dollars a day and billions of dollars every year. Earlier this month, the agency once again defaulted on their $5.5 billion pre-payment for their employee healthcare benefits. The USPS needs to definitively show that the previous 60-day test of grocery delivery services was successful and that the USPS did not lose money on this project. They should not be moving into new and unknown markets before understanding the possible consequences.”
Centers for Disease Control & Prevention HQ in Atlanta, GA
The United States government continues to rack up massive debt on the backs of taxpayers. As of right now, the national debt stands at more than $18 trillion and counting; yet elected officials and federal agencies continue to find creative and unfortunate ways to waste taxpayer dollars. One area where the frivolous spending taxpayer dollars is apparent is in grants; particularly from the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), being used for activist lobbying. This is something that taxpayers have no business paying for, period. Keeping that in mind, Taxpayers Protection Alliance joined a coalition effort led by American Commitment and signed this letter to the House Appropriations Committee urging them to protect taxpayers by making sure this type of abuse of the federal grant process would not continue.
Click 'read more' below to read the full letter
This aritcle orignally apeared in The Daily Caller on June 15, 2015
The vast majority of fiscal conservatives, including nearly every declared and potential GOP presidential candidate, oppose reauthorizing the Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank of the United States. So it is extremely disappointing for South Carolinians (and fiscal conservatives everywhere else) to see Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) cave to corporate welfare and support big government cronyism by strongly backing this misguided government agency. The bank, created in the 1930s, in order to help American exporters compete abroad, was intended to provide financing and loan guarantees to small businesses that would not otherwise qualify for loans. It has, however, failed to effectively meet its goal. Instead, the three largest recipients of Ex-Im largesse – Boeing, General Electric and Caterpillar – represent three of the United States’ largest corporations, not struggling small employers without hope of obtaining financing. Boeing is by far the largest recipient of bank funding, receiving $8.3 billion in loan subsidies last year alone. These subsidies allow foreign governments, often times unfriendly ones, to purchase their wide-bodied aircraft at a subsidized rate costing our domestic carriers jobs.
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This article appaeared in The Washington Times on June 1, 2015
Drew Johnson is a senior fellow at the Taxpayers Protection Alliance, a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization committed to limited, responsible government. Verizon’s $4.4 billion purchase of AOL, which will do nothing to expand Verizon’s wireline or wireless services, certainly confirmed one thing: Content and video are king, especially when it comes to mobile communications. If Americans want to benefit from the potential of this wireless world, though, consumers better hope Uncle Sam can get its act together. Whether Americans realize it or not, ongoing policy fights in Washington regarding the allocation and selling of electromagnetic spectrum held by the government and private companies hold great ramifications for the future of an information economy increasingly reliant on wireless communications. As I wrote in April, the issue may seem arcane, but determining who owns the spectrum that allows people to use wireless devices is integral to this nation’s growth. With mobile technology expanding to connect daily appliances to the Internet, this scarce resource remains critical to keeping pace globally and continuing our positive enhancements in life. One way the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and to a certain extent Congress, can protect the Internet is to end the troubling trend of allowing corporate welfare to determine who owns the spectrum.