Fiscal Irresponsibility

    Politicians, like those now holding the majority in Congress now, duped the public into amending the Constitution by calling to the covetness of those calling for the "have nots" to tax the "haves". Is that any different than the political bribery found in entitlement and welfare programs now? Aren't the "haves" now paying for those not working to support themselves and their families?
 
 
 

Fiscal Irresponsibility

 

    Most of you paid a significant part of your income to the Federal government less than a week ago. In continuing our series on the fiscal attack on the original intention of the Constitution, we might remind you that politicians, like those now holding the majority in Congress now, duped the public into amending the Constitution by calling to the covetness of those calling for the "have nots" to tax the "haves". Is that any different than the political bribery found in entitlement and welfare programs now? Aren't the "haves" now paying for those not working to support themselves and their families?

    From the 16 th Amendment's violation of the Framers' original intention, the secondary violation of the 10th Amendment of the Bill of Rights has progressed. Not only do bureaucracies self-perpetuate, they constantly seek to expand and grow like the most malignant of tumors consuming the body politic which feeds them.

    This discussion comes in three parts:
Part 1: Remember the election in 2006? A little over one year ago:
            1) Consumer confidence stood at a 2 1/2 year high;
            2) Regular gasoline sold for $2.19 a gallon;
            3) The unemployment rate was 4.5%.

    Since voting in a new Congress in 2006, one deferent to the liberal, socialist, welfare ideology, we have seen:
            1) Consumer confidence plummet;
            2) The cost of regular gasoline soar to over $3.50 a gallon;
            3) Unemployment up to 5% (a 10% increase);
            4) American households lose $2.3 trillion in equity
                (stock and mutual fund values evaporate);
            5) Americans' home equity drop by $1.2 trillion dollars;
            6) 1% of American homes in foreclosure.

                 America voted for change in 2006, and we got it!

                 Remember it's Congress that makes law not the President.
                 He has to work with what's handed to him.

    Quote of the Day……..'My friends, we live in the greatest nation in the history of the world. I hope you'll join with me as we try to change it.'Barack Obama

Part 2: Taxes – Whether Democrat or a Republican, these statistics speak for themselves.
 
Comparing Income Taxes under Bill Clinton and George Bush
Individual Income Taxes Under Presidents Clinton and Bush, 1999 Law and 2008 Law
For taxpayers who take the standard deduction and have no children
Taxpayer Tax under Clinton, 1999 tax law Tax under Bush, 2008 tax law
Single, income of 30,000 $3,157.50 $2,756.25
Single, income of 50,000 $7,262.50 $6,606.25
Married, income of $50,000 $5,085.00 $4,012.50
Married, income of $60,000 $6,585.00 $5,512.50
Single, income of $75,000 $14,262.50 $12,856.25
Married, income of $75,000 $9,426.50 $7,762.50
Single, income of $125,000* $29,378.50 $26,472.25
Married, income of $125,000* $23,426.50 $19,462.50
*This chart does not take into account the Alternative Minimum Tax

©2008 Tax Foundation. All Rights Reserved

    Both democratic candidates will return to the higher tax rates.
    It is amazing how many people that fall into the categories above, taking the
entitlement and welfare above, think

    If Obama or Hillary are elected, they both say they will repeal the Bush tax cuts and a good portion of the people that fall into the categories above can't wait for it to happen. This is like the movie The Sting with Paul Newman, you scam somebody out of some money and they don't even know what happened.

Part 3: You think the war in Iraq is costing us too much?
    Those buying into the political propaganda promising something for nothing have also been hammered with the propaganda that it is the war and the war on terror that is bankrupting us. That is utterly preposterous. Again, we call to your attention our article on "pork barrel" politics.
The following 14 instances of robbing the public may shed some light on the culprits.
URL's are included for verification of all the following facts.

$11 Billion to $22 billion is spent on welfare to
illegal aliens each year by state governments.
http://tinyurl.com/zob77

$2.2 Billion dollars a year is spent on food
assistance programs such as food stamps, WIC, and free
school lunches for illegal aliens.

$2.5 Billion dollars a year is spent on Medicaid

$12 Billion dollars a year is spent on primary and
secondary school education for children here illegally
and the taxpaper must pay for teachers who teach them in Spanish!


$17 Billion dollars a year is spent for
education for the American-born children of illegal
aliens, known as anchor babies.
http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0604/01/ldt.01.html

$3 Million Dollars a DAY is spent to incarcerate
illegal aliens.
http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0604/01/ldt.01.html

30% percent of all Federal Prison inmates are illegal aliens.
http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0604/01/ldt.01.html

$90 Billion Dollars a year is spent on illegal
aliens for welfare/social services by the American taxpayers.

$200 Billion Dollars a year in suppressed American
wages are caused by the illegal aliens.
http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0604/01/ldt.01.html

The illegal aliens in the United States have a crime
rate that's two and a half times that of white, non-illegal aliens.
In particular, their children, are going to make a huge additional
crime problem in the US.
http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0606/12/ldt.01.html

During the year of 2005 there were 4 to 10 MILLION
illegal aliens that crossed our Southern Border also, as
many as 19,500 illegal aliens from Terrorist Countries.
Millions of pounds of drugs, cocaine, meth, heroin and
marijuana, crossed into the U. S from the Southern border.
Homeland Security Report:

The National Policy Institute, 'estimated that the
total cost of mass deportation would be between $206 and
$230 billion or an average cost of between $41 and $46
billion annually over a five year period.'
< U>
In 2006, illegal aliens sent home $45 BILLION in
remittances back to their countries of origin.
http://www.rense.com/general75/niht.htm

The Dark Side of Illegal Immigration: Nearly One
Million Sex Crimes Committed by Illegal Immigrants In the US.
http://www.drdsk.com/articleshtml

The total cost is a whopping $ 338.3 BILLION DOLLARS A YEAR.

    Are we THAT stupid?

The Sixteenth Amendment

    The Sixteenth Amendment imposes a substantive limitation on congressional power, and is a restriction on its power to tax.

 
 
The Taxing Power,
The Sixteenth Amendment,
And the Meaning of 'Incomes'

By Erik M. Jensen

 

Table of Contents

I. The 1894 Income Tax and Its Predecessor

II. On to the Sixteenth Amendment

     A. To Amend or Not to Amend

     B. The Amendment Language: Taxes on Incomes

     C. What's an Income Tax?

III. A Wealth Tax Isn't an Income Tax

 

The Sixteenth Amendment

 

    Hardly anyone these days believes that the Sixteenth Amendment imposes a substantive limitation on congressional power, and the Amendment reads as if it were a grant of, not a restriction on, power: "The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration."1
 
    On its face, however, the Amendment isn't an unlimited expansion of the taxing power. It was a response to the Income Tax Cases (Pollock v. Farmers' Loan & Trust Co.),2 and it exempts only "taxes on incomes" from the apportionment rule that otherwise applies to direct taxes.3 In a famous 1920 dissent, Justice Holmes wrote that "[t]he known purpose of this Amendment was to get rid of nice questions as to what might be direct taxes,"4 but Holmes provided no evidence or authority to support that proposition. Professor Owen Fiss's narrow interpretation comes closer to explaining the Amendment's text: "it simply removed what appeared to be a technical objection or impediment that [the Income Tax Cases ] had posed to the income tax."5

    In this article, I examine the history of the Sixteenth Amendment to determine how the term "taxes on incomes" was understood by the drafters and ratifiers. From the beginning, supporters of the modern income tax stressed that it was necessary to tie taxation to ability to pay — to ensure that the wealthy would pay their fair share of the nation's tax liability. By taxing more than what was spent on consumption and, as a result, reaching the wealthy in a way that tariffs didn't, the income tax was considered fundamentally different from a tax on consumption.

    I conclude that an income tax and a consumption tax are, as a constitutional matter, different kinds of levies, and that the Sixteenth Amendment was intended to exempt only "taxes on incomes" from apportionment, not to repeal the direct-tax clauses. Those conclusions have contemporary relevance. If a tax is direct but isn't "on incomes," it should still have to be apportioned. As a result, if an unapportioned direct tax falls only on consumption, say, or only on wealth, the tax cannot derive any legitimacy from the Amendment.


I. The 1894 Income Tax and Its Predecessor


    Arguments made in debates on the 1894 income tax were, in substance, no different from those that would be made, after the Supreme Court rejected that tax, in promoting and resisting the Sixteenth Amendment. Controversies from the early 1890s until ratification in 1913 can be seen as a continuing discussion about the role income taxes should play in the United States. And that controversy illuminates the meaning of "taxes on incomes."
 
    The debate really began at the end of the Civil War, which had been funded in part by the first national income tax, a graduated tax applying to incomes over $600.6 Enacted in 1862, the tax was an emergency measure.7 But it had some inherent appeal8 — it supplemented the consumption tax system with a "tax that bore a closer relationship to 'ability to pay' than did tariffs and excises"9 — and it survived, in modified form, until 1872.10

    It could have lasted longer. Some congressmen wanted to make the income tax a permanent part of the national system. Ohio Senator John Sherman, for example, made several strong statements in support of retaining the Civil War tax. To the embarrassment of Sherman, who opposed the 1894 tax,11 those statements were repeated by tax supporters in 1894: An income tax is fair, it reaches the wealthy, and it doesn't have the unfortunate effects of consumption taxes.12 In one often-quoted speech, Sherman said the public is not yet prepared to apply the only key to a genuine revenue reform. A few years of further experience will convince the body of our people that a system of national taxes which rests the whole burden of taxation on consumption, and not one cent on property or income, is intrinsically unjust. . . . [T]he consumption of the rich does not bear the same relation to the consumption of the poor as the income of the one does to the wages of the other.13

    Whatever its intellectual justification, the Civil War tax expired because by the early 1870s tariffs were bringing in enough to keep the country going. But good economic times didn't last. The period between the 1872 expiration of the Civil War tax and the enactment of the 1894 income tax saw several panics and depressions, including one in 1893 (which gave a sense of immediacy to the 1894 debates). That period nevertheless also saw an astonishing accumulation of wealth by some very visible Americans. The contrast between wealth and suffering was one of the reasons several radical political parties, including the People's (Populist) Party, were created in the late nineteenth century.14

    The 1894 income tax is often called a populist measure,15 and the People's Party was in the forefront of the income tax movement. In 1892, the platform of the party proclaimed, "We demand a graduated income tax."16 The reason for the plank was obvious: Populists thought the wealthy weren't paying their fair share under the tariff regime. Populist Senator William Peffer of Kansas said bluntly: "We propose to equalize taxation as far as it is possible to do so, and we propose to make the wealth of the country bear its just and fair proportion of the taxes of the country."17

    The income tax had populist antecedents and populist support; no similar plank had appeared in the Democratic and Republican platforms. But the People's party didn't have enough power to get its way without help, and the idea of an explicitly graduated tax fell by the wayside quickly. The allure of an income tax was nevertheless unmistakable to many members of the old-line parties, particularly Democrats, who had taken control of both Houses of Congress and who saw an opportunity for party realignment.18 Consumption taxes like tariffs were thought to be shifted to purchasers,19 and, if that was right, a poor man bore the same tax burden in buying a bag of sugar as did a rich man. The tax burdens, that is, had nothing to do with respective abilities to pay the taxes, and that wasn't fair.

    Democratic Representatives Benton McMillin of Tennessee, chairman of the Ways and Means Subcommittee on Internal Revenue and a longtime proponent of income taxation, and the already legendary William Jennings Bryan of Nebraska recommended a 2 percent tax on incomes of $4,000 or more. That proposal, with differences in detail, in many ways mirrored the Civil War income tax, and it survived the subsequent legislative wrangling as an amendment to a major tariff revision bill.20

The difference between an income tax and a consumption tax — one's consistent with ability to pay, one's not – was stressed throughout the debates. McMillin explained the legislation in this way:

I ask of any reasonable person whether it is unjust to expect that a small per cent of this enormous revenue shall be placed upon the accumulated wealth of the country instead of placing all upon the consumption of the people. . . . And yet when it is proposed to shift this burden from those who can not bear it to those who can; to divide it between consumption and wealth; to shift it from the laborer who has nothing but his power to toil and sweat, to the man who has a fortune made or inherited, we hear a hue and cry raised by some individuals that it is unjust and inquisitorial in its nature. . . . 21

    The wealthy weren't paying their share because of the form American taxation had taken — taxes on consumption. High- and low- income people who, McMillin posited, spend about the same on necessities "pay the same taxes to the Government, because taxes are to be paid upon what they consume!"22

    Many other congressmen, like Senator Henry Teller of Colorado, made the same questionable point, that the rich were paying no more than the poor under the tariff system: "The man who holds millions of dollars' worth of property pays no more, perhaps, under the general taxes levied upon consumption than the man who has not any property."23 Other income tax supporters went further, suggesting the rich might even have been paying less than the poor. Populist Senator Omer Ken of Nebraska, for example, compared a poor man who consumes his entire income providing necessities for his family to a miser who owns a thousand times as much property but spends almost nothing:


        Since each is taxed in proportion to the amount he consumes, it can readily be seen that this poor man will contribute ten times as much to the support of the Government as this old bachelor millionaire, although the latter receives from the Government protection for one thousand times as much property as the former. . . . Should not this burden be shifted from the shoulders of the man who is struggling to feed, clothe, and educate his family to the shoulders of the financial giant who is more than able to bear it?24

    It's hard to imagine that on the average, the rich weren't paying far more in tariffs than the poor, something opponents of the income tax pointed out.25 But, silliness aside — opponents provided their absurd examples, too26 — the income tax supporters made an important point: A rich man with 10 times the income or wealth of a poor man might pay more in consumption taxes, but he probably didn't pay anything close to 10 times as much.27 Assuming the burden of tariffs was shifted to consumers, the poor man almost certainly paid a higher percentage of his income and wealth in taxes than did the rich, as Senator Sherman had posited in 1872. And, said McMillin, the relative burdens on the poor had been growing: "The taxes having continually increased upon consumption, and no corresponding increase having been placed upon accumulation, we see such colossal fortunes amassed as were never concentrated in any other age or in any other country of the world."28

    Having the wealthy pay more to support the government was thought to be fair in itself, but there were other reasons why tax obligations should be connected with ability to pay. For one thing, income tax supporters believed the rich were rich because of what government had done, and it was payback time to Uncle Sam. Stated Michigan Representative George Richardson: "I favor the income tax because it is asking a contribution of those citizens of the country who have accumulated great wealth and enjoy large incomes by reason of special privileges afforded by legislation."29 Moreover, the wealthy received more from government — the value of protecting property, for example, goes up with the value of property protected, or so it was said — and income tax proponents argued that the wealthy should have to pay for the extra services.

    Finally, the case for an income tax had a civic-virtue component. Some thought participation in politics by the wealthy was skewed by their disproportionately low tax bills. As Representative Josiah Patterson of Tennessee not very persuasively explained:


        It would be ideally just and equitable to make the separate incomes of all the citizens contribute accordingly as they have prospered, to make up at least in part the aggregate income required to maintain the Government. . . . Under the system now existing, where all revenues of the Government are raised by means of taxes imposed on articles of daily consumption, the reverse is the case. Those who own wealth are not only exempt from the imposition of public burdens, but they are reckless and extravagant in all public expenditures.30

    If the wealthy had to pay more in taxes, the argument went, they would pay more attention to government and help curb its excesses.

    The constant theme advanced by income tax supporters was that, to conform to ability-to-pay standards, tax law had to relieve burdens on consumption. The Ways and Means Committee report made the point like this: "The wealth of this country amounts to more than $65,000,000,000, and the question arises whether it is not just and fair that a portion of this money should be raised by a tax on the earnings of wealth instead of imposing it all, or nearly all, on consumption."31

    The evidence is overwhelming. Populist Representative T. J. Hudson of Kansas argued, for example, that the income tax "relieves from taxation very largely the necessities consumed by the poor and struggling masses and places at least a portion of the burdens upon superfluity." The governing principle is that "superfluous wealth, instead of the necessities of life, shall pay the taxes necessary to support the Govenrment [sic]."32

    A sampling of quotations will demonstrate how pervasive the discussion about the distinction between income taxes and consumption taxes was in the 1894 debates:

Representative Henry A. Coffeen (Wyoming): "The tariff method of taxation is aptly termed a tax on the wants or necessities of the people, for it is paid generally unconsciously in the shape of an increase of the price on nearly all necessary articles that the people must buy."33

Representative David A. De Armond (Missouri): "The income tax is a levy upon the full purse, upon the riches in the strong-box of wealth."34 De Armond was "in favor of taxing wealth according to its abundance rather than poverty according to its necessities."35

Representative Clifton R. Breckinridge (Arkansas): You can tax, as we do under our existing tariff and excise system, the consumption of the people, the necessaries of life, and the luxuries of life, and if a man be but a farthing above the point of starvation, under a system which taxes consumption we impose a burden upon him. But under this system what a man has above what he spends pays no Federal tax at all. In taxing incomes we pursue a far more enlightened policy.36

Senator George G. Vest (Missouri): "The theory of the income-tax law . . . is that the citizen pays upon consumption under the present system of taxation in the United States. In my judgment it is an unjust and unequal taxation."37
 
Senator James Z. George (Mississippi): "If the humble are to be taxed for Federal purposes, as they are  in the tax on consumption in all that they eat, in all that they wear, in all that they consume, . . . the wealthy . . . ought not to . . . claim an exemption from a tax so light as this."38

And so on. Trust me, there are many, many more examples. I'm not making this up.

    It's possible to lose the income-tax-versus-consumption-tax thread in the 1894 debates because there was a lot of bombast, some of it downright personal and nasty,39 and some of it (on both sides) conjuring images of class warfare and revolution. For example, South Dakota Senator James Kyle, an independent of Populist bent, condemned the "thirty years with Shylock in power," noting that "[r]evolutions have occured [sic] with less ferment than we see in the United States to-day. . . . [T]he capitalistic press of the United States to-day jeer and taunt the efforts of the bond-burdened serfs on the farms and in the workshops who attempt to rise from their pitiful condition."40

    But the statements of the revolution-may-be-coming sort are perfectly consistent with ability to pay. Taxing on that basis is what Representative Hugh Dinsmore of Arkansas meant when he said "the hand of the tax-gatherer shall loosen its grasp, held so long and so firmly on the necks of the poor, and shall bear more heavily upon the rich, who are abler to meet its demands."41 So, too, with Representative Hudson of Kansas: "[T]he majority of the very wealthy are haughty, overbearing, autocratic, mean, and it is that class in particular that the income tax is designed to reach."42 The wealthy should pay because they can pay, and they weren't paying their share with only consumption taxes on the books.

    Because of the push for fairness, the disputes inevitably had a class-versus-class flavor. With a proposed rate of only 2 percent, the charges of socialism seem a bit much: "vicious, socialistic and un-American,43 and "a measure of purely socialistic tendency,"44 noted two authors. But there was a class aspect to the legislation. The tax affected only 1 percent of the population, the attack on the wealthiest of the wealthy was no accident, and, once the income-tax principle had been accepted, there was no guarantee rates would stay low.45 James Carter, representing a bank nominally defending the tax before the Supreme Court, conceded it was "class legislation in th[e] sense [of distinguishing between rich and poor]. That was its very object and purpose."46 It's hard to disagree.

    The Revolution wasn't really coming, of course, but one can understood how some thought it might be.47 In any event, tax opponents were as capable of exaggeration as the most populistic of Populists. For instance, Senator George Hoar of Massachusetts intoned: "We all want if we can to see a time when we can get rid of the internal-revenue system altogether. It is odious, it is a sore, it is an irritation, it is a sting in all parts of the country."48 Indeed, characterizing the tax as populist would, it was hoped, bring the legislation down. Populist Senator William Allen of Nebraska complained, "Every Senator that has spoken against the income tax has taken the occasion to say that it was Populistic,"49 and he was pretty much correct. For example, New York Senator David Bennett Hill, a staunch opponent of the tax (although a Democrat), stated:

It is conceded that it is a plank, not of the Democratic or Republican parties, but of the newly formed Populist party. It is conceded that it is a war tax which was never imposed in the whole history of the Government except during the stress of our civil war, and was one of the first war taxes abolished when peace was restored. It is conceded that it has never been approved by a vote of the people anywhere.50

    They may have grumbled about being used as punching bags, but the Populists were delighted to claim responsibility for the income tax. Representative Lafe Pence of Colorado said:


        It is true that the proposition to levy a tax upon incomes is a Populist proposition. No national platform except that of the People's party indorse it.

        All Populists favor it, and in the contest now being waged and to be continued until this or some similar law is enacted, the most valiant and enthusiastic of its supporters are found amongst the active and leading members of the People's party.51

    Although he preferred a graduated land tax — something that wasn't going to happen — Kansas Senator Peffer proudly noted the income tax "is a populist measure. It is the offspring of the Populist party."52

    Income tax opponents didn't limit themselves to questioning the populist origins of the tax; they also marshaled an arsenal of substantive arguments against the tax, and in favor of a consumption tax system. The income tax had historically belonged to the states,53 they argued, and it ought to be used by the national government only in emergencies, if at all.54 It was socialistic,55 nothing but class legislation,56 and it was sectional in purpose — aimed at the East, where the wealthy were concentrated.57 Moreover, it was a pernicious tax that would encourage Americans to lie about their economic situations and, if the tax was going to be enforced, require that government agents pry into the private affairs of citizens. "Inquisitorial" was an often used adjective.58

    Yet another argument was made against the income tax and, implicitly, in favor of the existing consumption taxes. Although Pollock is often described as having been a shock to Court- watchers in 1895, potential constitutional problems were raised in the 1894 debates. New York Senator Hill stated (with a touch of hyperbole, one imagines), "I have never talked with a lawyer or the bench of a court who has not stated that he believes this is a direct tax, and therefore unconstitutional."59 Others agreed that enacting an income tax would bring serious constitutional challenges.60

    The debates were heated, but opponents and proponents of the 1894 tax agreed on one basic point: The income tax was fundamentally different from the consumption tax system then in existence. In the next part of the article, I'll demonstrate that arguments in 1909 about the merits of income tax legislation and the proposed Sixteenth Amendment were the same as those made in 1894. What was said in 1894 informs what the term "taxes on incomes" means: A consumption tax is not an income tax.


II. On to the Sixteenth Amendment


The Supreme Court struck down the 1894 income tax in the Income Tax Cases. The reaction in many quarters was outrage, and some even urged impeachment of the "nullifying judges."61 The decision was particularly suspect, critics said, because by the barest majority (5-4) the Court had rejected a century's worth of jurisprudence.62 Professor Brownlee is convinced Pollock actually "stimulated some support for income taxation."63

The possibility of a constitutional amendment that would clearly permit an unapportioned income tax was raised soon after the Court handed down its decisions in 1895, but little of significance happened until 1909. Because the Court began to nibble away at the scope of its decisions,64 some held out hope no amendment would be necessary. In the meantime, Congress had found alternative means of raising revenue, lessening any sense of urgency about an income tax.65 And throughout this period, the attention of progressives was focused on other matters, like antitrust.66

But hopes that the Court might unequivocally repudiate Pollock were dashed. There was an obvious chicken-and-egg problem. If the Court were going to reconsider the constitutionality of an unapportioned income tax, Congress would have to enact such a tax, and, with Pollock on the books, that would be a bold step. But if Congress didn't act, the Court wouldn't have the opportunity to reexamine its decisions — even though many observers thought the Court was ready to do just that.

Despite (or maybe because of) the uncertainty about the status of Pollock, the movement for an income tax hit its stride near the end of the first decade of the twentieth century. Democratic Representative Cordell Hull of Tennessee introduced income tax legislation in 1907, and the Democratic party called for an income tax amendment in its 1908 platform:67


    [W]e favor an income tax as part of our revenue system, and we urge the submission of a constitutional amendment specifically authorizing congress to levy and collect a tax upon individual and corporate incomes, to the end that wealth may bear its proportionate share of the burdens of the federal government.68

Support for an income tax had been building among Republicans as well. In 1906 President Theodore Roosevelt stated that a "graduated income tax of the proper type would be a desirable feature of federal taxation, and it is to be hoped that one may be devised which the supreme court will declare constitutional."69 How to do that wasn't clear, however, and Roosevelt showed only sporadic interest in the project.70 But the seed had been planted, and Roosevelt's successor, William Howard Taft, also appeared to accept the constitutionality and desirability, at least in emergencies, of an income tax. In accepting the Republican nomination in 1908, Taft said, "I believe that an income tax, when the protective system of customs and the internal revenue tax shall not furnish enough for governmental needs, can and should be devised which, under the decisions of the Supreme Court, will conform to the Constitution."71 Furthermore, "insurgent Republicans" had come to Congress willing to join with Democrats and any remaining Populists to push for an income tax.72

Support was there, but income tax proponents had to resolve a difficult threshold question: Whether to seek a new statute or to go first for a constitutional amendment. In this part of the article, I first discuss the debates on whether an amendment was necessary or desirable. I then turn to an analysis of the meaning of the Amendment, focusing on the changes in language that occurred during the deliberations and what those changes mean for our understanding today. Finally, I describe the discussions of the merits of income taxes that occurred in connection with the Sixteenth Amendment, discussions that were substantively no different from those that had occurred in 1894.

My thesis is that the move for an amendment was intended to do what income tax proponents had attempted in 1894: Shifting the tax base from consumption to income, and thereby tying tax burdens to ability to pay.73 That was a fundamental change, but it was limited in its effects. The Sixteenth Amendment didn't eliminate the concept of "direct taxes," and it shouldn't be read, as Professor Ackerman and others have suggested, as vindicating congressional plenary power in taxation.

A. To Amend or Not to Amend

The merits of income taxes came close to being an afterthought in congressional deliberations in 1909 because there was little more to say. The positions on both sides had been exhaustively developed in 1894, and, as I'll demonstrate shortly, the substantive arguments were a reprise of 1894 — with discussion about how income taxes are different from consumption taxes.

The focus of much of the debates in 1909, in form at least, was on whether a constitutional amendment was the way to proceed. Many income tax supporters thought no amendment was necessary. Moreover, some advocates, like Cordell Hull, resisted an amendment because, they worried, a few people in a few states could prevent ratification and thereby delay, if not altogether destroy, the movement. Without the support of House Speaker Joe Cannon, Hull couldn't get his proposal for reenactment of the 1894 legislation onto the fast track,74 but in the Senate there were income tax supporters ready and willing to move ahead.

In 1909 Senators Joseph W. Bailey of Texas, a Democrat, and Albert B. Cummins of Iowa, a Republican, both introduced legislation to add an income tax provision, modeled on the 1894 statute, to a tariff bill.75 Their thinking was straightforward. Early cases had read the direct-tax clauses as applying to very little. The Supreme Court in 1895 had rescued the clauses, but it had been badly divided (5-4), and it later seemed to have retreated. Furthermore, the composition of the Court had changed. Why bother with a constitutional amendment if the Court was likely to uphold an income tax anyway? In introducing his version of an amendment to the tariff bill, Senator Bailey said he didn't believe Pollock


    is a correct interpretation of the Constitution, and I feel confident that an overwhelming majority of the best legal opinion in this Republic believes that it was erroneous. With this thought in my mind, and remembering that the decision was by a bare majority, and that the decision itself overruled the decisions of a hundred years, I do not think it improper for the American Congress to submit the question to the reconsideration of that great tribunal.76

Bailey and Cummins favored the statutory route although they recognized the Court might adhere to Pollock and strike down a new statute. The status quo was unacceptable. As Cummins said, "If that opinion is to stand in its full scope and with its full vigor, then the United States must abandon for all time, or until the Constitution is amended, the exercise of a power and authority which had been recognized for a hundred years before the opinion was announced." Congress can interpret the Constitution as well as the Court, Cummins said, and "I believe it to be the bounden duty of Congress at this time to again invoke the deliberate reexamination of this question by the Supreme Court."77

The risk of a negative decision from the Court wasn't a reason to stand pat. Quite the contrary. If the Court rejected a new income tax statute, the case for a constitutional amendment would be clear. But without a new judicial decision on the books, an amendment could get bogged down precisely because it wouldn't be clear the amendment was needed.

Not surprisingly, despite ridicule from Senator William Borah and others, those resisting the Bailey-Cummins legislation stressed the Court's honor.78 Some amendment supporters, like Nebraska Senator Norris Brown, had urged deference to Pollock all along.79 Others, like Rhode Island Senator and Republican majority leader Nelson Aldrich, whose motives weren't necessarily high-minded, agreed: "The imposition of an income tax now is not only an attempt to adopt an unconstitutional provision, but it is an assault, a rebuke in any way, of the Supreme Court of the United States."80

Since commentators today almost universally reject Pollock, it's become easy to question the motives of those who pushed for a constitutional amendment rather than a new income tax statute.81 Perhaps everyone wasn't acting with the best of intentions — on that point, more in a moment — but it was hardly frivolous to worry about offending the Supreme Court. The potential for real conflict was there, and public confidence in the Court may have been at stake, too. Pollock had been decided only 14 years earlier; it was no old-and-cold decision of a bygone era.

In any event, President Taft weighed in with support for a constitutional amendment, stressing, among other things, the desirability of "stability of judicial construction of the Constitution."82 The Senate Finance Committee, which reported out the language that became the Sixteenth Amendment, recommended the conservative route as well:


    The committee decided that it would be unwise to pass an income-tax amendment [to a tariff] in form and substance like those introduced by the Senator from Texas [Bailey] and the Senator from Iowa [Cummins]. We felt that, in view of the decision . . . in the Pollock case, it would be indelicate, at least, for the Congress of the United States to pass another measure and ask the Supreme Court to pass upon it, when they had already passed upon the proposition. . . . 83

Other reasons, some legitimate and some perhaps not so legitimate, also pointed toward amending the Constitution before enacting an income tax. For one thing, while the Supreme Court might uphold a new statute, a later Court could reverse course as, it was said, had happened in 1895. Only an amendment would protect against future judicial usurpation of congressional power. Senator Thomas Carter of Montana, a Republican, argued that, "in the midst of that bewildering condition, it is infinitely better for us to refer the constitutional amendment to the several States, so that the question involving the power of Congress to levy an income tax may be forever and effectually put at rest."84

And it was probably the case that some "supporters" — Nelson Aldrich is the culprit most often named — viewed the proposals as a way to resist the 1909 move for an income tax; to send the issue to the states, where the possibility of rejection was high (only 12 states needed to say no); and to use rejection to resist future income tax pressures.85 An income tax might have been inevitable — today it looks that way — but not all congressmen wanted it to happen on their watch.

Income tax proponents certainly thought there was something fishy about "support" for an amendment. For example, Senator Cummins said the amendment was "brought forward here, not by its original author, the Senator from Nebraska [Brown], but by its more recent sponsors, simply as one of the instruments to defeat the income-tax provision . . . , and I shall vote for it without the slightest hope that it will ever become a part of the Constitution."86

Mississippi Senator Anselm McLaurin, who wanted an income tax and who thought an amendment unnecessary, was also pessimistic about what the process would bring: "I think the effect will be to defer the enactment of any law providing for an income tax. I think the effect of it will be that there will be probably more than a fourth of the States of the Union which will refuse to ratify the action of Congress." Worse, he predicted, that failure "would be urged as a very plausible argument before the Supreme Court of the United States that the people are not in favor of an income tax."87

Regardless of the motives of amendment "supporters," however, income tax proponents had to accept reality: There would be no income tax until the Constitution was amended. As Representative William Adamson of Georgia put it, "I do not believe it necessary to amend the Constitution in order to levy an income tax, but the majority will not let us have it any other way." But, Adamson argued, if we have to do it, let's do it fast: "Let all lovers of their country press the matter at once and continuously before all state legislatures."88 And history was on the side of the tax. It was going to happen — if not now, later: "Representatives here admit that they do not expect to pass an income-tax law after this amendment is adopted. If they do not, men sent here in their places will."89

B. The Amendment Language: Taxes on Incomes

Discussions about a possible constitutional amendment didn't proceed in isolation. There was a lot going on in 1909 — the Bailey- Cummins proposals to enact an income tax without waiting for a constitutional amendment, tariff revision, and a presidential proposal for a corporate income tax to operate at least until the Constitution could be amended to permit a personal income tax. Despite the confusing mass of material, it's possible to get a good sense of what the Sixteenth Amendment was supposed to do, and that was to remove only taxes on incomes from the apportionment requirement.

A key player was Republican Senator Norris Brown of Nebraska. The important chronology began in late April, when Brown proposed the following language: "The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes and inheritances."90 Brown, like many others, was leery of enacting another statute that might be rejected by the Supreme Court: "It is for that reason, Senators, that I present to you to-day the imperative and commanding necessity for an amendment to the Constitution which will give the court a Constitution that can not be interpreted two ways."91

However meritorious a constitutional amendment might have been in the abstract, Senator Isidor Rayner of Maryland quickly pointed out that Brown's language was useless. Congress already had the power to tax incomes and inheritances, he noted. The problem, at least with an income tax, was that the Court had said such a tax must be apportioned: "[I]f this amendment . . . were to go through, it would not affect the [direct-tax clauses] and there would still have to be an apportionment."92 Rayner was obviously right, and this Brown proposal went nowhere.

A month and a half later, on June 16, President Taft gave support to a constitutional amendment, stressing the danger of enacting a tax based on the hope the Court might reverse itself.93 Although Taft may have favored a personal income tax, he proposed enactment of a corporate tax (something thought to be permissible already)94 until the Constitution could be amended. We don't know for sure why Taft took this position — it's been suggested Senator Aldrich manipulated Taft to kill any possibility of a personal income tax in 190995 — but the Taft proposals took the wind out of the sails of those who favored enacting an individual tax without first amending the Constitution.

The next day, June 17, with the president now on the side of a constitutional amendment, Senator Brown tried again, proposing the following language: "The Congress shall have power to lay and collect direct taxes on incomes without apportionment among the several States according to population."96 Here we get to the beginning of some good, nitty-gritty interpretational issues.

If the goal was to permit an unapportioned income tax, Brown's language seemed to work: It removed any "direct taxes on incomes" from the apportionment requirement. But Senator McLaurin wasn't satisfied. The impediment they were facing was the direct-tax clauses, he argued, so why not strike out the references to direct taxes in the Constitution, leaving apportionment to apply only to capitation taxes? That would "accomplish all that [Brown's] amendment proposes to accomplish and not make a constitutional amendment for the enacting of a single act of legislation."97

Brown said No: "That may be true, Mr. President; but my purpose is to confine it to income taxes alone, and to forever settle the dispute by referring the subject to the several States."98 Had the McLaurin proposal been accepted, it would have made analysis of the taxing power far simpler today, but Brown's intention was unmistakable, to limit the Amendment to "taxes on incomes." Nothing that happened later in the amendment process changed that critical language or that basic intention.

Brown didn't explain why he resisted the apparently friendly McLaurin suggestion. As we shall see, Professor Ackerman accuses Brown of bad faith. But one can imagine legitimate reasons for drafting the amendment the way Brown did. His proposal kept the changes narrow, limiting the effect to income taxes — which was, after all, what tax proponents were pushing for — and a narrow proposal made ratification easier. Maybe Brown was leery of eliminating the apportionment rule, making an unapportioned real- estate tax possible. Or perhaps he was concerned about the unknown. If you're not sure what might be included in the category of "direct taxes," or what sorts of taxes might be devised in the future, you might well resist giving future Congresses the power to enact any tax without limitation.

Whatever Brown's reasons, he wasn't willing to broaden the language, and his proposal was sent to the Finance Committee. The form of the Amendment that emerged in June, with an explanation of why a constitutional amendment should be sought,99 read somewhat differently, but it was still limited to "taxes on incomes": "The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States and without regard to any census or enumeration."100 With a comma added, that's the way the Amendment now reads.

The committee had deleted Brown's reference to "direct taxes" and added the phrase "from whatever source derived," but how these changes occurred isn't clear. According to Professor Ratner, "These crucially important and liberal changes were introduced by Senator Aldrich at the suggestion and the insistence of Senator Knute Nelson of Minnesota. . . . Nelson, although a conservative . . . , seems to have become responsive to the progressive upsurge in Minnesota . . . "101 The Blakeys, relying on a letter published in 1920, also named Nelson: "[I]t was there amended at the insistence of Nelson . . . to include the phrase 'from whatever source derived' and omit the word 'direct'. . . . "102 Buenker suggested Nelson's "object was to foreclose the possibility of any class of income being held exempt from taxation by the Court."103 Seligman noted simply: "No explanation was made of the change, and when Senator Aldrich reported the amendment, he asked to have it disposed of without debate. It was indeed debated, but the discussion was exceedingly slight."104 The joint resolution containing the Amendment passed unanimously in the Senate (77- 0),105 and in the House a week later, after about four hours' debate, by a vote of 318 to 14.106

The traditional understanding of the language change, in Ratner's words, is that, if the Brown version had been accepted, "the source of all income would have continued to be open to constitutional challenge and the source of the income would still have been considered by the Court the object of the tax."107 (I'll return to that questionable proposition shortly.) Senator Brown seemed to have accepted the Court's determination that at least certain types of income taxes (on income from property) are direct — hence his reference to "direct taxes on incomes." Unlike many income tax proponents, Brown was apparently willing to concede the Court had gotten it right, and he wanted to change the constitutional principle the Court had relied on. The committee didn't want to endorse that principle, the argument goes, and that's why Ratner referred to the changes as "crucially important and liberal."

Professor Ackerman buys into that theory, and takes it to breathtaking heights. Senator Brown was guilty of a "clever verbalism, [aiming] to transform this tactical retreat [of the amendment process] into a long-run conservative victory" by conceding the direct character of income taxes, thereby "explicitly endorsing the Pollock majority's vast expansion of the concept,"108 and implicitly endorsing the idea that the universe of direct taxes was much larger than previously thought.109 When new language emerged from the Finance Committee, it was


    a major retreat from Brown's conservative ambitions. Gone was [Brown's] express vindication of Pollock's decision to expand the category of "direct" taxation; in its place we find an explicit repudiation of Pollock's effort to expand the category by insisting that an income tax, from whatever source derived, should be immune from the rule of apportionment.110


The committee drafters, Ackerman says, knew exactly what they were doing. They "took special efforts to avoid freezing Pollock's doctrine concerning the scope of the 'direct tax' clauses."111 The language, in short, "had been revised to eliminate all explicit endorsement of Pollock's reasoning."112

Ackerman's version of events is full of problems. An awful lot happens in his rendition that wasn't explicit at all. Ackerman presents no evidence of what the "draftsmen" were thinking, or what "special efforts" they were taking, as they "explicitly" wrote what became the Amendment.

And his rendition doesn't make sense. The result in Pollock wasn't repudiated by the Committee's change in language. Yes, many income tax supporters were reluctant to indicate acceptance of Pollock, and they were afraid an amendment would do exactly that. Nevertheless, as long as an amendment was ratified quickly, so that an unapportioned income tax could be enacted, it wouldn't have mattered. The real concern was what it would mean if a proposed amendment weren't ratified. That failure could be seen as validating Pollock — making an income tax virtually impossible. But this concern arose because of the very idea of a constitutional amendment, not because of Brown's language. Accepting Pollock was inherent in the decision to seek any amendment, whatever the wording.113 If the Amendment hadn't been ratified, the change Ackerman praises would have been cold comfort to income tax supporters — something Senator McLaurin noted in floor debates.114

I also see no reason to think the Finance Committee was doing what Ackerman says it was. Once the committee reported, the changes were accepted with little discussion; if a seismic shift was occurring, nearly everyone missed it.115 And let's remember who ran the show. The committee chair was Nelson Aldrich of Rhode Island, usually characterized as an anti-tax villain. (Indeed, that's how Ackerman sees Aldrich.)116 That Aldrich would have pushed a text meant to resurrect pre-Pollock understanding boggles the mind. "[T]he draftsmen . . . took special efforts to avoid freezing Pollock's doctrine concerning the scope of the 'direct tax' clauses?" I don't think so.

Finally, the traditional justification for the language change, whether or not embellished by Professor Ackerman, is full of holes. Recall Ratner's explanation: Had Brown's proposal succeeded, "the source of all income would have continued to be open to constitutional challenge and the source of the income would still have been considered by the Court the object of the tax."117 But with the Brown language — "The Congress shall have power to lay and collect direct taxes on incomes without apportionment among the several States according to population"118 — why does source matter? If a tax on incomes isn't a direct tax, the Brown language would have done nothing; the amendment wouldn't have applied. If a tax on income from certain sources (real property, for example) is direct, however, Brown's proposal would have permitted the tax without apportionment. If a tax on income from other sources isn't direct, the amendment wouldn't have been implicated, but such a tax isn't subject to apportionment anyway. A "direct tax on incomes," if there's such a thing, needn't be apportioned, and an indirect tax on incomes, if there's such a thing, needn't be apportioned. Either way, Brown's version would have worked the way he wanted it to, without regard to source of income.119

But whether the final version of the Amendment made any substantive changes in Senator Brown's proposal is almost beside the point. The crucial consideration from this history is that the Amendment is limited to taxes on incomes, and Brown specifically rejected doing away with apportionment for all direct taxes. With that language, other direct taxes remain subject to apportionment, as Brown apparently knew, and neither version of the Amendment, Brown's or the committee's, includes anything that changes the characterization of any taxes as direct or indirect.

There should be no doubt the Amendment was limited to "taxes on incomes." After the resolution had been reported by the Finance Committee, with some language changed but with the reference to "taxes on incomes" intact, Senator McLaurin once again suggested it would be better to amend the Constitution to delete references to "direct taxes."120 McLaurin said his proposal would "eliminate from the Constitution every cause of contention over the question of the authority of Congress to levy an income tax, except as to the power of Congress to grade an income tax." Furthermore, he was worried that by passing a resolution applicable only to income taxes, Congress might be seen as "recogniz[ing] the income tax as a direct tax"121 — something that could matter if the Amendment in its committee- approved version weren't ratified. But McLaurin got no support.

Of course, Ackerman has an explanation for Congress's not taking a broader step, and part of it is plausible: "Why create unnecessary political problems by drafting a broader amendment when the Court was retreating to its tradition of restrained interpretation of 'direct' taxation on other fronts?"122 Do what needs to be done to make the tax possible. Deal with the narrow holding of Pollock and nothing else. Don't create unnecessary issues to complicate ratification.

If Ackerman had stopped there, I'd be politely applauding. Instead he pulls an elephant out of his hat: "[T]he decision by the People [in ratifying the Amendment] expressly to overrule one branch of Pollock should make other aspects of that decision more, not less, questionable."123 It's because the Amendment was purposely, narrowly drafted, and ratified in that form, that we should read it broadly!

Obviously if McLaurin's proposal to do away with references to "direct taxes" had been accepted, Professor Ackerman would now be claiming, with reason, that the direct-tax clauses are dead. But it's because Congress didn't do that, because Congress produced a much narrower version of the Amendment, that the direct-tax clauses are dead! I'm not convinced.

The fight was often intense, but the Amendment was ratified in less than four years. As Randolph Paul said, "[T]he struggle for the amendment had the quality of anti-climax."124 There were bumps along the way, most significantly opposition from New York Governor Charles Evans Hughes. Hughes worried that the phrase "from whatever source derived" would permit taxing "not only incomes from ordinary real or personal property, but also incomes derived from State and municipal securities,"125 something Pollock had precluded under the doctrine of intergovernmental immunity.126 If the Amendment was intended to overturn Pollock, Hughes's fears weren't trivial.127 This concern delayed ratification in a few states, but Hughes received assurances that the Amendment wasn't intended to extend the taxing power to new categories of income.128 By early 1913, 42 states, including New York, had ratified the Amendment.129

C. What's an Income Tax?

To this point, I've argued the Sixteenth Amendment was intended to remove only "taxes on incomes" from the apportionment requirement, not to abolish the direct-tax clauses. But even if that's "all" the Amendment did, it was quite a lot: The category of "taxes on incomes" was hardly trivial. It was what members of Congress had been talking about since 1894 (and, in some cases, since 1862).

On the merits — in discussing both the proposed statutory changes introduced by Senators Bailey and Cummins and the possibility of a constitutional amendment — income tax debates in 1909 mirrored those of 1894. Indeed, Representative Champ Clark of Missouri suggested there was nothing more to say: "[T]here is not very much necessity for speech making on this occasion or on this proposition. The income tax is a Democratic proposition. We put it in the tariff bill of 1894. A very large majority of us have been in favor of it ever since."130 The significant debate in 1909 was about whether to seek a constitutional amendment. On the question of what an income tax is, the debates on proposed statutory changes and on the proposed constitutional amendment were really one big debate.

As was true in 1894, much of the discussion was about how an income tax would further the ability-to-pay principle in a way that consumption taxes didn't. It was déjà vu all over again. Senator Bailey explained his amendment to the tariff bill: "I believe [the income tax] is the only tax ever yet devised by the statesmen of the world that rises and falls with a man's ability to pay it."131

When Cummins introduced his bill, Senator Augustus Octavius Bacon of Georgia pressed him. Would Cummins favor the income tax if enough revenue could be raised by tariffs? Bacon wanted to know "whether it was rested upon the importance of shifting the burden of taxation from the great masses of consumers, so far as we may be able to do it, to rest it in part, at least, upon the shoulders of those who have the wealth of the country." Cummins finally answered: "[I]f I could change the situation I would so rearrange and readjust these schedules as to decrease the revenue derived from the custom-houses and place it where it should belong — upon those fortunate people who enjoy large incomes." Said Bacon: "Now the Senator has stated exactly the thing I wanted him to state."132

Once again I'm going to risk overkill with a series of quotations to demonstrate how ability to pay dominated discussions of income tax proponents: Income taxes are consistent with that principle, consumption taxes aren't. This is a representative sample; I could provide many more examples.

Sen. Bailey (Texas): "Under any circumstances an income tax is more equitable than a tax on consumption. It is more just as between the different classes, and it better conforms to that sound canon of taxation which enjoins upon us to lay all taxes on those who can bear them. . . . "133

Sen. Cummins (Iowa): "[A]n income tax, levied upon those who ought to bear the burdens of government, . . . will meet even that principle more perfectly than to levy duties upon things that the people must use, and impose the weight of government only by the rule of consumption."134

Rep. Ollie M. James (Kentucky): "[N]o tax was ever more unjust . . . than a tax upon consumption. . . . A tax upon what some people eat and what they wear would deny them the necessities of life, while others, rolling in opulence . . . , would not feel such a tax."135

Rep. Adam M. Byrd (Mississippi): A tariff falls "upon consumption and not upon wealth, upon what one eats and wears and not upon his property; it means that the citizen who can scarcely provide food and raiment for his wife and children contributes as much or more to the support of the Government as does the multimillionaire."136

Rep. William Sulzer, a Democrat (New York):


    [N]early all the taxes . . . are levied on consumption — on what the people need to eat and to wear and to live; on the necessaries of life; and the consequence is that the poor man . . . pays practically as much to support the Government as the rich man. . . . This system of tariff tax on consumption . . . is an unjust system of taxation, and the only way to remedy the injustice and destroy the inequality is by a graduated income tax. . . . 137


Rep. De Armond (Missouri): "There is no good reason why taxation should not be according to ability to pay — according to wealth, according to income. Your tariff tax is a tax upon necessity, a tax in proportion to the amount you buy, a tax in proportion to what you must have. . . . "138

Rep. Courtney W. Hamlin (Missouri): "The tariff tax is levied entirely upon consumption. The laboring man must expend his income for food, fuel, clothing, and tools of industry, and these taxes are heavier upon the necessities." He advocated shifting the burden of government "from the backs of the poor to those who can bear it; to divide these burdens between wealth and consumption."139

Rep. William R. Smith (Texas): "No one can contend that our system of indirect taxation [has no] objectionable features, because . . . its burdens are measured by what the citizen's needs require him to purchase for consumption and not by the amount of his wealth, nor by his ability to pay."140

Overall, the tone of the debates was more civil than in 1894. There were fewer populists around, and, given the reduced opposition to an income tax, less reason to debate with "agrarian ferocity."141 But except for differences in tone, passages could be moved from 1894 to 1909 and back again without changing the nature of the debate in either year.

Opponents made the same points that had been made in 1894. An income tax, it was said, was socialistic and inquisitorial.142 It ought to be available, if at all, only in emergencies.143 And, as in 1894, there were references about the extent to which an income tax helps, or hinders, civic virtue.144

The income tax proponents prevailed, of course, with ratification of the Sixteenth Amendment and enactment of an income tax in 1913.145 That first statute seems quaint — with rates on income above $3,000 ranging from 1 percent to 7 percent146 — and we've certainly moved far beyond what anyone could have imagined in 1909 or 1913. In 1909, Senator William Borah responded to the charge that an income tax is necessarily socialistic, by sarcastically criticizing positions taken by opponents:


    When the State or the Government sees fit to lay a [tariff] which may take 30 per cent of the income, the fruits of the labor, of the man of ordinary means, that is the exercise of constitutional power. But when you lay a tax of 2 per cent upon incomes, so slight a burden that it would scarcely be felt, that is socialism. Man's intelligence should not be so universally discredited. But he says if you can levy a tax of 2 per cent you may lay a tax of 50 or 100 per cent. Who will lay the tax of 50 or 100 per cent? Whose equity, sense of fairness, of justice, of patriotism does he question? Why, the representatives of the American people. . . . 147


How could the "representatives of the American people" do such a thing? Well, the marginal rates never reached 100 percent, but they got close — and they got there fast.148

Fights about appropriate rates will go on as long as there's an income tax, of course, and the constitutionality of a graduated rate structure turned out to be a nonissue.149 Given the extent to which income tax proponents wanted to implement the ability-to-pay principle, it did no textual damage to see progressivity as inherent in the grant of power to tax "incomes" without apportionment. Nevertheless, the Sixteenth Amendment covered only "taxes on incomes." The Amendment isn't authority for an unapportioned direct-consumption tax; it was the perceived failure of consumption taxes that made the income tax — and hence the Sixteenth Amendment — necessary.


III. A Wealth Tax Isn't an Income Tax


The basic distinction drawn in the debates in 1894 and 1909 was between a tax on income and a tax on consumption, but another point needs to be made about the original understanding. Although the goal behind the Sixteenth Amendment was to ensure that the wealthy paid their fair share of the nation's taxes, Amendment proponents weren't proposing a wealth tax as we have come to understand that term. The Amendment isn't authority for an unapportioned tax on wealth.

Income tax proponents in 1894 and, to a lesser extent, 1909 routinely contrasted the consumption taxes they despised with taxes on wealth, which would meet ability-to-pay criteria, and the income tax was often characterized as a tax on wealth or property.150 When they used those terms, however, supporters were talking about taxing "earnings of wealth"151 — that's what was on the table for discussion — rather than measuring the tax by the value of a person's wealth.152 Indeed, some Populist supporters plaintively wished it were possible to impose a tax directly on land,153 but it was understood that such a tax wouldn't fly politically and that, in any event, it would present constitutional problems.154

The tax enacted in 1894 wasn't an ad valorem tax on wealth; nor was it like what is proposed today as a wealth tax. If our understanding of the Sixteenth Amendment should be informed by the 1894 and 1909 debates, as I've argued, we shouldn't take from those debates the idea that a wealth tax is a "tax on incomes."155

* * * * *

I've presented evidence that, in the debates culminating in the Sixteenth Amendment, participants thought of income taxes and consumption taxes as fundamentally different. The Amendment came into being because the consumption taxes used throughout American history were thought to be flawed, and a significant change was needed. The term "taxes on incomes" had a generally understood meaning, and it should be interpreted today with the income tax-consumption tax distinction in mind.


FOOTNOTES


1 U.S. Const. amend. XVI.

2 157 U.S. 429 (1895) (holding unapportioned tax on income from real estate unconstitutional); 158 U.S. 601 (1895) (extending principle to income from personal property and rejecting entire 1894 tax).

3 Direct taxes must generally be apportioned among the states on the basis of population. See U.S. Const. art. I, section 2, cl. 3; U.S. Const. art. I, section 9, cl. 4; see Erik M. Jensen, "The Apportionment of 'Direct Taxes': Are Consumption Taxes Constitutional?" 97 Colum. L. Rev. 2334 (1997).

4 Eisner v. Macomber, 252 U.S. 189, 220 (1920) (Holmes, J., dissenting).

5 Owen M. Fiss, History of the Supreme Court of the United States: Troubled Beginnings of the Modern State, 1888- 1910, at 100 (1993).

6 See Act of July 1, 1862, ch. 119, sections 89- 93, 12 Stat. 432, 473-75 (imposing 3 percent tax on "annual gains, profits, or income of every person residing in the United States" above $600, with 5 percent rate applicable over $10,000). In 1864, rates increased to 5, 7 1/2, and 10 percent for income ranges $600-$5,000, $5,000-$10,000, and over $10,000, respectively. See Act of June 30, 1864, ch. 173, section 116, 13 Stat. 223, 281; see also Springer v. United States, 102 U.S. 586 (1880) (upholding unapportioned Civil War income tax); Edwin R. A. Seligman, The Income Tax: A Study of the History, Theory and Practice of Income Taxation at Home and Abroad 430-80 (1911); Randolph E. Paul, Taxation in the United States 9-15 (1954); John F. Witte, The Politics and Development of the Federal Income Tax 67-70 (1985).

7 See Roy G. Blakey and Gladys C. Blakey, The Federal Income Tax 7 (1940). Not until 1894 did many think such a tax might become a permanent part of the revenue system.

8 The Blakeys said "[f]ew had anything good to say for it," id. at 7, but Ratner argued that "the great mass of the people were not interested in having the income tax repealed." Sidney Ratner, Taxation and Democracy in America 143 (1967). Nevertheless, the wealthy who accepted it "as an emergency measure . . . lobbied vigorously" for repeal, and "[l]ittle organized support emerged for permanent income taxation." W. Elliott Brownlee, Federal Taxation in America 29 (1996).

9 Brownlee, supra note 8, at 25.

10 Rates were reduced by the Act of March 2, 1867, ch. 169, section 13, 14 Stat. 471, 478 (imposing 5 percent tax on incomes above $1,000), and the Act of July 14, 1870, ch. 255, sections 6-11, 16 Stat. 256, 257-59 (imposing 2 1/2 percent tax on incomes over $2,000). The effect was to reduce the number of taxpayers from 460,170 in 1866 to 72,949 in 1872. See Ratner, supra note 8, at 143.

11 See 26 Cong. Rec. 6694-95 (June 22, 1894) (statement of Sherman that he agreed in 1894 with what he'd said in the 1870s, but conditions had changed, income tax was no longer necessary, and so on).

12 See, e.g., 26 Cong. Rec. app. 315 (Jan. 31, 1894) (statement of Ind. Rep. Elijah V. Brookshire); 26 Cong. Rec. 6685 (June 22, 1894) (statement of S.D. Sen. James H. Kyle).

13 Internal Taxes and Tariff (statement of Mar. 15, 1872), reprinted in John Sherman, Selected Speeches on Finance and Taxation, from 1859 to 1878, at 336, 348-49 (1879). In fighting repeal, Sherman regularly contrasted the income tax with consumption taxes. See, e.g., "Receipts and Expenditures — Reduction of Taxation" (statement of May 23, 1870), in Sherman, supra, at 284, 291 ("The real objection to [customs duties] is that they fall entirely on consumption.").

14 See Ratner, supra note 8, at 145-67.

15 E.g., David E. Kyvig, Explicit and Authentic Acts: Amending the U.S. Constitution, 1776-1995, at 194-96 (1996).

16 Quoted in 26 Cong. Rec. app. 601 (Jan. 30, 1894) (statement of Populist Colorado Rep. Lafe Pence) (emphasis added).

17 26 Cong. Rec. 6634 (June 21, 1894).

18 See Brownlee, supra note 8, at 38 (arguing that Democrats "sensed an opportunity to use tax issues for a major realignment of the two political parties along sectional and class lines. . . . ") (footnote omitted).

19 See, e.g., 26 Cong. Rec. app. 406 (Jan. 30, 1894) (statement of Mo. Rep. David A. De Armond) ("A tariff is a tax, and the foreigner does not pay it. It is paid by the consumer, and is a tax on consumption.").

20 President Cleveland played little role. He'd called for "a small tax upon incomes derived from land and certain corporate investments." Quoted in Seligman, supra note 6, at 496. But while he "regarded the tax on personal incomes as just, . . . it would antagonize the financial interests to whom [Democrats] looked for support of the gold standard." Ratner, supra note 8, at 173-74. Cleveland allowed the bill to become law without his signature. Id. at 189.

21 26 Cong. Rec. app. 413 (Jan. 29, 1894).

22 26 Cong. Rec. app. 415 (Jan. 29, 1894).

23 26 Cong. Rec. 6692 (June 22, 1894).

24 26 Cong. Rec. app. 293 (Jan. 31, 1894) (discussing People's Party platform).

25 For example, New York Senator David Bennett Hill stated that a "tariff duty is an indirect tax upon consumption, and wealth pays its share of whatever it consumes. There are no classes exempt from its operation, and the greater the consumption the larger is the tax." 26 Cong. Rec. 6616 (June 21, 1894).

26 For example, Senator Hoar of Massachusetts stated that "[u]nder this [income tax] plan a man who consumes all he raises in luxurious living escapes altogether, while the man who earns and is paid wages which he has to expend for the honest and frugal support and education of his family is taxed." 26 Cong. Rec. 6630 (June 21, 1894).

27 Cf. John D. Buenker, The Income Tax and the Progressive Era 31 (1985) (noting that, after Civil War, "[n]ot until the enactment of the 1909 corporate excise tax was there any federal tax which did not fall directly on . . . 'things men eat and wear.'").

28 26 Cong. Rec. app. 415 (Jan. 29, 1894).

29 26 Cong. Rec. app. 271 (Jan. 31, 1894); see also 26 Cong. Rec. 6706-07 (June 22, 1894) (statement of Neb. Sen. Allen).

30 26 Cong. Rec. app. 76 (Jan. 23, 1894).

31 H.R. Rep. No. 53-276, at 3 (1894).

32 26 Cong. Rec. app. 57 (Jan. 15, 1894).

33 26 Cong. Rec. app. 289 (Jan. 30, 1894).

34 26 Cong. Rec. app. 405 (Jan. 30, 1894).

35 26 Cong. Rec. app. 406 (Jan. 30, 1894).

36 26 Cong. Rec. app. 439 (Jan. 30, 1894).

37 26 Cong. Rec. 6866 (June 27, 1894).

38 26 Cong. Rec. 6819 (June 26, 1894).

39 At one point, New York Representative William Bourke Cockran, an opponent of the income tax, had referred to the tax as "an assault on Democratic institutions." 26 Cong. Rec. app. 463 (Jan. 30, 1894). George Richardson of Michigan responded that Cockran was


    a millionaire through active operations in protected industries, and yet he is determined to contribute no more to the payment of his own salary than does the limping, limbless defender of the stars and stripes who has neither wealth nor income except what he can earn in broken health, together with the pension provided by law. What a spectacle! A member of Congress not only pleading for continued protection who has a large share of the business in his own city that yields an average profit of 24 per cent, but he insists that none of that income shall be taxed to liquidate the obligations to that roll of honor, the pension roll.


26 Cong. Rec. app. 272 (Jan. 31, 1894).

40 26 Cong. Rec. 6686 (June 22, 1894).

41 26 Cong. Rec. app. 275 (Jan. 29, 1894).

42 26 Cong. Rec. app. 57 (Jan. 15, 1894).

43 Amasa J. Parker Jr., "Income Tax of 1894 — Its Provisions and Constitutionality," 50 Alb. L.J. 416, 421 (1894).

44 Robert Sewell, "The Income Tax: Is It Constitutional?" 28 Am. L. Rev. 808, 808 (1894).

45 See Loren P. Beth, The Development of the American Constitution 1877-1917, at 158 (1971) (suggesting opponents "were worried as much by the possibility that the amount of the tax would be increased in future years as they were by the 2 per cent in itself").

46 Pollock I, 157 U.S. at 518 (oral argument for appellee); see Jensen, supra note 3, at 2366 (1997).

47 See 26 Cong. Rec. 1609 (Jan. 29, 1894) (statement of Mo. Rep. Uriel Hall) ("[W]hen you oppose a measure of this kind, . . . you make a foundation for the argument of anarchy, socialism, and demagoguery, that eventually will sweep back and curse this country, as it did in France in the days of the French revolution.").

48 26 Cong. Rec. 6630 (June 21, 1894). Hear! Hear!

49 26 Cong. Rec. 6707 (June 21, 1894); see also 26 Cong. Rec. app. 601 (Jan. 30, 1894) (discussing the complaint of Populist Rep. Pence that New York Rep. Franklin Bartlett's characterization of the income tax bill as Populist was intended "to frighten away from support of the amendment some Democratic members of this House.").

50 26 Cong. Rec. 6611 (June 21, 1894).

51 26 Cong. Rec. app. 605 (Jan. 30, 1894).

52 26 Cong. Rec. 6634 (June 21, 1894).

53 See, e.g., 26 Cong. Rec. 6694 (June 22, 1894) (statement of Ohio Sen. Sherman).

54 See, e.g., 26 Cong. Rec. app. 207 (Jan. 26, 1894) (statement of Pa. Rep. Robert J. Adams Jr.) ("An income tax! A tax so odious that no administration ever dared to impose it except in time of war; and you will find that the people will not tolerate it in time of peace. . . . It does not belong to a free country. . . . [I]t is class legislation.").

55 See, e.g., 26 Cong. Rec. 6695 (June 22, 1894) (statement of Sen. Sherman) ("In a republic like ours, where all men are equal, this attempt to array the rich against the poor or the poor against the rich is socialism, communism, devilism. . . . ").

56 See, e.g., 26 Cong. Rec. app. 303 (Jan. 30, 1894) (statement of Me. Rep. Seth L. Milliken) ("The . . . income tax is clearly class legislation. It imposes barriers upon one portion of our people which it does not impose upon others.").

57 See, e.g., 26 Cong. Rec. 6627 (June 21, 1894) (statement of Del. Sen. Anthony Higgins).

58 See, e.g., 26 Cong. Rec. app. 395 (Jan. 30, 1894) (statement of N.Y. Rep. Joseph C. Hendrix).

59 26 Cong. Rec. 6637 (June 21, 1894).

60 See, e.g., 26 Cong. Rec. 6629 (June 21, 1894) (statement of Sen. Hoar) (arguing legislation would be unconstitutional at least to the extent it applied to income from real property).

61 Sylvester Pennoyer, "The Income Tax Decision, and the Power of the Supreme Court to Nullify Acts of Congress," 29 Am. L. Rev. 550, 558 (1895).

62 See Edward B. Whitney, "Political Dangers of the Income-Tax Decision," 19 Forum 521, 529 (1895) ("It now, by the casting of a vote of a single man, reverses two unanimous decisions of many years' standing, and in effect overrules a series of unanimous decisions reaching back for a century.").

63 Brownlee, supra note 8, at 39. The effect must have been minor; the Democrats endorsed an income tax in 1896 and went down to resounding defeat. Id.

64 See Jensen, supra note 3, at 2375-77.

65 To help fund the Spanish-American War, Congress enacted an "excise" tax on the gross receipts of companies refining petroleum or sugar. The Court upheld the tax as an indirect one not requiring apportionment. Spreckels Sugar Ref. Co. v. McClain, 192 U.S. 397 (1904).

66 See Blakey and Blakey, supra note 7, at 21 (noting that Democrats had no income tax plank in their 1904 platform).

67 See id. at 22; Buenker, supra note 27, at 54-55.

68 Quoted in Seligman, supra note 6, at 591-92.

69 Quoted in id. at 591.

70 See Blakey and Blakey, supra note 7, at 21.

71 Quoted in id. at 23.

72 See W. Elliot Brownlee, "Historical Perspective on U.S. Tax Policy Toward the Rich," in Does Atlas Shrug? The Economic Consequences of Taxing the Rich 28, 39 (Joel B. Slemrod ed., 2000).

73 Defending the income tax, Professor Graetz says, "A flat-rate tax on consumption would shift substantial amounts of taxes from higher- to lower-income families. . . . [T]he American people will not accept such a tax as fair. Indeed, the Sixteenth Amendment was added to the Constitution to redress such a situation." Michael J. Graetz, The Decline (and Fall?) of the Income Tax 222, 262 (1997).

74 See Kyvig, supra note 15, at 201.

75 Bailey's proposal mirrored the 1894 act, except for exempting state and local bond interest. Cummins's proposal was for graduated rates of 2 percent to 6 percent on incomes exceeding $6,000. The proposals were later combined as the "Bailey-Cummins amendment" to the tariff bill. See Witte, supra note 6, at 74-75; Seligman, supra note 6, at 592.

76 44 Cong. Rec. 1351 (Apr. 15, 1909).

77 44 Cong. Rec. 1422 (Apr. 21, 1909).

78 See 44 Cong. Rec. 3989 (June 30, 1909) (statement of Sen. Borah):


    Where great and powerful intellects . . . differ by a bare margin of one, and by such difference overturn the precedents and practice of a century, and by such difference overturn the precedents upon which we had collected millions from the American people . . . , who will tell me that . . . it is an assault to the dignity of the court or an undermining of its confidence to ask it . . . to reconsider that question?


79 See infra text accompanying note 91.

80 44 Cong. Rec. 3931 (June 29, 1909).

81 See, e.g., Bruce Ackerman, "Taxation and the Constitution," 99 Colum. L. Rev. 1, 36 (1999). But see infra notes 108-116 and accompanying text (questioning Ackerman's version of events).

82 Presidential Message, Tax on Net Income of Corporations, S. Doc. No. 61-98, at 2 (1909); see Ratner, supra note 8, at 286. Taft coupled his recommendation with a proposal for a corporate income tax. Taft's "compromise" position may have been the result of Aldrich's manipulation. See Kyvig, supra note 15, at 202. Or Taft may have been manipulating Aldrich. See Ackerman, supra note 81, at 34-35.

83 44 Cong. Rec. 3936 (June 29, 1909) (statement of Cal. Sen. Frank P. Flint).

84 44 Cong. Rec. 3995 (July 1, 1909).

85 See Kyvig, supra note 15, at 202-03; Ratner, supra note 8, at 307.

86 44 Cong. Rec. 3974 (June 30, 1909).

87 44 Cong. Rec. 4067 (July 3, 1909).

88 44 Cong. Rec. app. 119 (July 12, 1909).

89 Id. at app. 121.

90 S.J. Res. 25, 61st Cong., 44 Cong. Rec. 1568 (Apr. 28, 1909).

91 44 Cong. Rec. 1568 (Apr. 28, 1909).

92 44 Cong. Rec. 1569 (Apr. 28, 1909).

93 Presidential Message, supra note 82, at 2; Ratner, supra note 8, at 286.

94 A corporate income tax had been characterized as an excise. Flint v. Stone Tracy Co., 220 U.S. 107 (1911).

95 See supra note 82. Or maybe Taft was jerking Aldrich around. See id. Or maybe both actually believed in what they were doing. It's been known to happen.

96 S.J. Res. 39, 61st Cong., 44 Cong. Rec. 3377 (June 17, 1909).

97 44 Cong. Rec. 3377 (June 17, 1909); see infra notes 120-121 and accompanying text (discussing McLaurin's later attempt to change substance of amendment).

98 44 Cong. Rec. 3377 (June 17, 1909) (emphasis added).

99 See supra text accompanying note 83 (statement of Sen. Flint).

100 S.J. Res. 40, 61st Cong., 44 Cong. Rec. 3900 (June 28, 1909).

101 Ratner, supra note 8, at 299.

102 Blakey and Blakey, supra note 7, at 61.

103 Buenker, supra note 27, at 127.

104 Seligman, supra note 6, at 595.

105 44 Cong. Rec. 4121 (July 5, 1909).

106 44 Cong. Rec. 4440 (July 12, 1909). The level of opposition was greater than the votes suggest, because of absences and abstentions. Nevertheless, the votes were overwhelmingly favorable.

107 Ratner, supra note 8, at 299.

108 Ackerman, supra note 81, at 37.

109 Id. Ackerman says McLaurin's response to Brown, see supra text accompanying note 97, defeated Brown's "gambit." Ackerman, supra note 81, at 37. Since McLaurin's suggestion went nowhere, I don't understand the point.

110 Ackerman, supra note 81, at 38.

111 Id. at 51 (emphasis deleted).

112 Id. at 38.

113 See supra text accompanying note 87 (statement of Sen. McLaurin).

114 See infra notes 120-121 and accompanying text.

115 See supra notes 104-106 and accompanying text.

116 See, e.g., Ackerman, supra note 81, at 34 (noting that plan for income tax statute "encountered stiff resistance from congressional conservatives, led by Nelson Aldrich of New York [sic] [who] was opposed to all forms of income taxation").

117 Ratner, supra note 8, at 299.

118 S.J. Res. 39, 61st Cong., 44 Cong. Rec. 3377 (June 17, 1909).

119 If source of income mattered under the Brown proposal, it's for the reason suggested by Buenker — that Senator Nelson wanted to make sure all income (including any that had previously been off limits for an apportioned tax) could be subject to an unapportioned tax. See supra note 103 and accompanying text. But if the final language was intended to change intergovernmental immunity law, for example, to make it possible to tax interest on municipal bonds, that point eluded most congressmen. That possibility caused consternation in ratification debates. See infra notes 124-129 and accompanying text (discussing Gov. Hughes's reservations about Amendment).

120 See 44 Cong. Rec. 4067 (July 3, 1909); 44 Cong. Rec. 4109 (July 5, 1909).

121 44 Cong. Rec. 4109 (July 5, 1909); see also supra text accompanying note 87 (noting McLaurin's concern that failure to ratify would be used as evidence of lack of support for income tax).

122 Ackerman, supra note 81, at 5.

123 Id. at 50.

124 Paul, supra note 6, at 97.

125 Ratner, supra note 8, at 304 (quoting Special Message from the Governor, New York Senate, No. 3, at 5 (1910)).

126 Pollock I, 157 U.S. at 584-586.

127 That specific part of the holding in Pollock was overturned in South Carolina v. Baker, 485 U.S. 505 (1988).

128 See Evans v. Gore, 253 U.S. 245, 260-61 (1920); see also Buenker, supra note 27, at 255-61.

129 See Buenker, supra note 27, at 158.

130 44 Cong. Rec. 4392 (July 12, 1909).

131 44 Cong. Rec. 1351 (Apr. 15, 1909).

132 44 Cong. Rec. 1429 (Apr. 21, 1909).

133 44 Cong. Rec. 1538 (Apr. 26, 1909).

134 44 Cong. Rec. 3968 (June 30, 1909).

135 44 Cong. Rec. 4398 (July 12, 1909).

136 44 Cong. Rec. 4416 (July 12, 1909).

137 44 Cong. Rec. 4417 (July 12, 1909).

138 44 Cong. Rec. 4420 (July 12, 1909).

139 44 Cong. Rec. 4433 (July 12, 1909).

140 44 Cong. Rec. app. 127 (July 12, 1909).

141 Brownlee, supra note 8, at 38 (describing 1894 debates).

142 See 44 Cong. Rec. 4390 (July 12, 1909) (statement of N.Y. Republican Rep. Sereno E. Payne, chair of Ways and Means Committee) ("As to the general policy of an income tax, I am utterly opposed to it. I believe with Gladstone that it tends to make a nation of liars. . . . ").

143 44 Cong. Rec. 4391 (July 12, 1909) (statement of Mass. Rep. Samuel W. McCall) ("[W]hy not . . . limit it expressly to time of war?").

144 Senator McLaurin said an income tax would make the "wealthy . . . interested in an economical administration of the Government instead of extravagance." 44 Cong. Rec. 4109 (May 27, 1909).

145 Income Tax Law of 1913, ch. 16, 38 Stat. 114.

146 In form, the tax was 1 percent on "net income" above $3,000. Id. sections IIA.1, II.C. But surtaxes ranging from 1 percent to 6 percent applied to higher levels of income. Id. section II.A.2.

147 44 Cong. Rec. 3999 (July 1, 1909).

148 Marginal rates went up to 77 percent in 1918, see Revenue Act of 1918, ch. 18, sections 210-211, 40 Stat. 1057 (1919); Brownlee, supra note 72, at 45, but the wartime rates were temporary.

149 See Brushaber v. Union Pacific Railroad Co., 240 U.S. 1 (1916).

150 Many of the passages I've quoted have language like that. See, e.g., supra text accompanying notes 21 (McMillin), 138 (De Armond), 139 (Hamlin).

151 H.R. Rep. No. 53-276, at 3 (1894) (emphasis added).

152 A few congressmen were clear about this distinction. Populist James Maguire of California recognized the income tax wouldn't reach unrealized appreciation in land value; he therefore proposed a direct tax on that value. 26 Cong. Rec. app. 329 (Jan. 31, 1894).

153 See, e.g., 26 Cong. Rec. 6634 (June 21, 1894) (statement of Sen. Peffer).

154 Some said apportionment had outlived its usefulness, see, e.g., 44 Cong. Rec. 4392 (July 12, 1909) (statement of Rep. Clark), but it was hard to imagine an unapportioned tax on real property surviving judicial review.

155 Professor Schenk has suggested the Supreme Court might be convinced to see the ex ante wealth tax she proposes as "an income tax with a base equal to the risk-free return to certain assets," Deborah H. Schenk, "Saving the Income Tax With a Wealth Tax," 53 Tax L. Rev. 423, 441 (2000), and therefore as "a tax on income within the Sixteenth Amendment." Id. at 442. But if so, it wouldn't be because income taxes and wealth taxes were viewed the same way when the Amendment was ratified. Schenk recognizes the Court might see her reformulation "as a mere semantic change that does not cure the constitutional infirmity of a wealth tax." Id.

 

The American Dream – Where Has It Gone?

    This is continuation of our series on the attack on America originating from the political propaganda generated by those expressing the views of their various false religions of humanism. Whether found in the rhetoric of liberal politicians or spewed forth from the preachers of revisionist history abounding in the brain-washing lies and deceptions promoting the treason ascribed to by many of those in control of public education; only a return to – carrying out, protecting, and defending, the original intention of the Constitution offers any hope for our children and generations to come.

 

 

 

The American Dream – Where Has It Gone?

    This is continuation of our series on the attack on America originating from the political propaganda generated by those expressing the views of their various false religions of humanism. Whether found in the rhetoric of liberal politicians or spewed forth from the preachers of revisionist history abounding in the brain-washing lies and deceptions promoting the treason ascribed to by many of those in control of public education; only a return to – carrying out, protecting, and defending, the original intention of the Constitution offers any hope for our children and generations to come. Addressing the areas robbing us of the "American dream", employing our misguided concepts embodying "political correctness", subverting the only Truth which can truly set humanity free, the following excerpts from a speech by the former Governor of Colorado clearly identify our path to destruction.

    The Framers' understanding of reality and human behavior grounded the "supreme law of the land" in the validation of history. It is not by chance that their understanding of the facts and truths revealed throughout the historical record, confirmed as they studied cultures and governments to 500 years before Christ, in secret, in 1787, were consistent with their Christian Biblical worldview. Our "one Nation under God" was established on the Truth which does not require human acceptance or acknowledgement. It is the same whether in the jungles of the Amazon, China, the lands decimated by the lies of Islamic fundamentalism, Northern Ireland, or America, pre-, during, and post- our great Civil War. Human behavior is a constant. Only the circumstances and humanity's willingness to sacrifice, so "that this Nation under God shall have a new birth of freedom", change. We are engaged in a worldwide civil war of ideologies, where the weapons of the moral and righteous are truth, right, and justice for all. 

 CftC

I HAVE A PLAN TO DESTROY AMERICA
RICHARD D. LAMM


    I HAVE A SECRET PLAN TO DESTROY AMERICA. IF YOU BELIEVE, AS MANY DO, THAT AMERICA IS TOO SMUG, TOO WHITE BREAD, TOO SELF-SATISFIED, TOO RICH, LET'S DESTROY AMERICA. IT IS NOT THAT HARD TO DO. HISTORY SHOWS THAT NATIONS ARE MORE FRAGILE THAN THEIR CITIZENS THINK. NO NATION IN HISTORY HAS SURVIVED THE RAVAGES OF TIME. ARNOLD TOYNBEE OBSERVED THAT ALL GREAT CIVILIZATIONS RISE AND THEY ALL FALL, AND THAT "AN AUTOPSY OF HISTORY WOULD SHOW THAT ALL GREAT NATIONS COMMIT SUICIDE." HERE IS MY PLAN:


I.     WE MUST FIRST MAKE AMERICA A BILINGUAL-BICULTURAL COUNTRY. HISTORY SHOWS, IN MY OPINION, THAT NO NATION CAN SURVIVE THE TENSION, CONFLICT, AND ANTAGONISM OF TWO COMPETING LANGUAGES AND CULTURES. IT IS A BLESSING FOR AN INDIVIDUAL TO BE BILINGUAL; IT IS A CURSE FOR A SOCIETY TO BE BILINGUAL. ONE SCHOLAR, SEYMOUR MARTIN LIPSET, PUT IT THIS WAY: THE HISTORIES OF BILINGUAL AND BICULTURAL SOCIETIES THAT DO NOT ASSIMILATE ARE HISTORIES OF TURMOIL, TENSION, AND TRAGEDY. CANADA, BELGIUM, MALAYSIA, LEBANON-ALL FACE CRISES OF NATIONAL EXISTENCE IN WHICH MINORITIES PRESS FOR AUTONOMY, IF NOT INDEPENDENCE. PAKISTAN AND CYPRUS HAVE DIVIDED. NIGERIA SUPPRESSED AN ETHNIC REBELLION. FRANCE FACES DIFFICULTIES WITH ITS BASQUES, BRETONS, AND CORSICANS.


II.     I WOULD THEN INVENT "MULTICULTURALISM" AND ENCOURAGE IMMIGRANTS TO MAINTAIN THEIR OWN CULTURE. I WOULD MAKE IT AN ARTICLE OF BELIEF THAT ALL CULTURES ARE EQUAL: THAT THERE ARE NO CULTURAL DIFFERENCES THAT ARE IMPORTANT. I WOULD DECLARE IT AN ARTICLE OF FAITH THAT THE BLACK AND HISPANIC DROPOUT RATE IS ONLY DUE TO PREJUDICE AND DISCRIMINATION BY THE MAJORITY. EVERY OTHER EXPLANATION IS OUT-OF-BOUNDS.


III.     WE CAN MAKE THE UNITED STATES A "HISPANIC QUEBEC" WITHOUT MUCH EFFORT. THE KEY IS TO CELEBRATE DIVERSITY RATHER THAN UNITY. AS BENJAMIN SCHWARZ SAID IN THE ATLANTIC MONTHLY RECENTLY: "…THE APPARENT SUCCESS OF OUR OWN MULTIETHNIC AND MULTICULTURAL EXPERIMENT MIGHT HAVE BEEN ACHIEVED NOT BY TOLERANCE BUT BY HEGEMONY". WITHOUT THE DOMINANCE THAT ONCE DICTATED ETHNOCENTRICALLY, AND WHAT IT MEANT TO BE AN AMERICAN, WE ARE LEFT WITH ONLY TOLERANCE AND PLURALISM TO HOLD US TOGETHER. I WOULD ENCOURAGE ALL IMMIGRANTS TO KEEP THEIR OWN LANGUAGE AND CULTURE. I WOULD REPLACE THE MELTING POT METAPHOR WITH A SALAD BOWL METAPHOR. IT IS IMPORTANT TO INSURE THAT WE HAVE VARIOUS CULTURAL SUB-GROUPS LIVING IN AMERICA REINFORCING THEIR DIFFERENCES RATHER THAN AMERICANS, EMPHASIZING THEIR SIMILARITIES.


IV.     HAVING DONE ALL THIS, I WOULD MAKE OUR FASTEST GROWING DEMOGRAPHIC GROUP THE LEAST EDUCATED – I WOULD ADD A SECOND UNDERCLASS, UNASSIMILATED, UNDEREDUCATED, AND ANTAGONISTIC TO OUR POPULATION. I WOULD HAVE THIS SECOND UNDERCLASS HAVE A 50% DROP OUT RATE FROM SCHOOL.


V.     I WOULD THEN GET THE BIG FOUNDATIONS AND BIG BUSINESS TO GIVE THESE EFFORTS LOTS OF MONEY. I WOULD INVEST IN ETHNIC IDENTITY, AND I WOULD ESTABLISH THE CULT OF VICTIMOLOGY. I WOULD GET ALL MINORITIES TO THINK THEIR LACK OF SUCCESS WAS ALL THE FAULT OF THE MAJORITY – I WOULD START A GRIEVANCE INDUSTRY BLAMING ALL MINORITY FAILURE ON THE MAJORITY POPULATION.


VI.     I WOULD ESTABLISH DUAL CITIZENSHIP AND PROMOTE DIVIDED LOYALTIES. I WOULD "CELEBRATE DIVERSITY". "DIVERSITY" IS A WONDERFULLY SEDUCTIVE WORD. IT STRESSES DIFFERENCES RATHER THAN COMMONALITIES. DIVERSE PEOPLE WORLDWIDE ARE MOSTLY ENGAGED IN HATING EACH OTHER-THAT IS, WHEN THEY ARE NOT KILLING EACH OTHER. A DIVERSE," PEACEFUL, OR STABLE SOCIETY IS AGAINST MOST HISTORICAL PRECEDENT. PEOPLE UNDERVALUE THE UNITY IT TAKES TO KEEP A NATION TOGETHER, AND WE CAN TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THIS MYOPIA. LOOK AT THE ANCIENT GREEKS. DORF'S WORLD HISTORY TELLS US: THE GREEKS BELIEVED THAT THEY BELONGED TO THE SAME RACE; THEY POSSESSED A COMMON LANGUAGE AND LITERATURE; AND THEY WORSHIPED THE SAME GODS. ALL GREECE TOOK PART IN THE OLYMPIC GAMES IN HONOR OF ZEUS AND ALL GREEKS VENERATED THE SHRINE OF APOLLO AT DELPHI. A COMMON ENEMY PERSIA THREATENED THEIR LIBERTY. YET, ALL OF THESE BONDS TOGETHER WERE NOT STRONG ENOUGH TO OVERCOME TWO FACTORS . . . (LOCAL PATRIOTISM AND GEOGRAPHICAL CONDITIONS THAT NURTURED POLITICAL DIVISIONS . . .) IF WE CAN PUT THE EMPHASIS ON THE "PLURIBUS," INSTEAD OF THE "UNUM," WE CAN BALKANIZE AMERICA AS SURELY AS KOSOVO.


VII.     THEN I WOULD PLACE ALL THESE SUBJECTS OFF LIMITS – MAKE IT TABOO TO TALK ABOUT. I WOULD FIND A WORD SIMILAR TO "HERETIC" IN THE 16TH CENTURY – THAT STOPPED DISCUSSION AND PARALYZED THINKING. WORDS LIKE "RACIST", "XENOPHOBE" THAT HALTS ARGUMENT AND CONVERSATION.


VII. HAVING MADE AMERICA A BILINGUAL-BICULTURAL COUNTRY, HAVING ESTABLISHED MULTICULTURALISM, HAVING THE LARGE FOUNDATIONS FUND THE DOCTRINE OF "VICTIMOLOGY", I WOULD NEXT MAKE IT IMPOSSIBLE TO ENFORCE OUR IMMIGRATION LAWS. I WOULD DEVELOP A MANTRA – "THAT BECAUSE IMMIGRATION HAS BEEN GOOD FOR AMERICA, IT MUST ALWAYS BE GOOD." I WOULD MAKE EVERY INDIVIDUAL IMMIGRANT SYMPATRIC AND IGNORE THE CUMULATIVE IMPACT.


VIII.     LASTLY, I WOULD CENSOR VICTOR DAVIS HANSON'S BOOK MEXIFORNIA — THIS BOOK IS DANGEROUS — IT EXPOSES MY PLAN TO DESTROY AMERICA. SO PLEASE, PLEASE — IF YOU FEEL THAT AMERICA DESERVES TO BE DESTROYED — PLEASE, PLEASE — DON'T BUY THIS BOOK! THIS GUY IS ON TO MY PLAN.
"THE SMART WAY TO KEEP PEOPLE PASSIVE AND OBEDIENT IS TO STRICTLY LIMIT THE SPECTRUM OF ACCEPTABLE OPINION, BUT ALLOW VERY LIVELY DEBATE WITHIN THAT SPECTRUM." — NOAM CHOMSKY, AMERICAN LINGUIST AND US MEDIA AND FOREIGN POLICY CRITIC.

    Richard D. Lamm served as governor of Colorado for twelve years from 1975 to 1987. He gave the above quoted five minute speech in Washington, D.C. several years ago.

 

Where Has All your Money Gone?

    Of all the blatant violations of the original intention of the Constitution, perhaps, none stands out more than the fiscal irresponsibility of those we elect and trust to represent us in Washington. Unbridled power of a Federal government was certainly one of the most expressed concerns of the Framers.
 
 
 
Where Has All your Money Gone?
or
Hello Sucker!!!!
 
    Of all the blatant violations of the original intention of the Constitution, perhaps, none stands out more than the fiscal irresponsibility of those we elect and trust to represent us in Washington. Unbridled power of a Federal government was certainly one of the most expressed concerns of the Framers. The fundamental question always posed by this Committee for the Constitution is: Where would we be now if we had held those representing us accountable to the original intention of the Constitution?. That question begins this new series on the economic or fiscal intentions of the Framers to order the Federal bureaucracy. From The Attack on America, "All political organizations, running the gamut of size from the nuclear family to every national government, are motivated and directed by economic 'special interests'." 
 
    Might it be more consistent with the Constitution to "provide for the common defense" by demanding of every member of both the Senate and the House that every scrap of "pork" be allocated to salaries and benefits for the Armed Forces? Would it be too unreasonable to ask that every Congressional pay and benefit increase by ratified by three-fourths of the state legislatures?
 
    Looking at the concluding article, which addresses the need to support the "surge" in Iraq, might the rhetorical, first question of the second paragraph above be appropriately answered?
 
CftC
 
Note: There are all lot of facts and statistics, with accompanying "hyperlinks" to validate them, in this publication. Please take the time to read each section, and please pass the numbers and links on to all on your eMail lists. We are at war against enemies here and abroad! The lies and deceptions of their propaganda machines must be obliterated by the truth!
 

Citizens Against Government Waste
2008 CONGRESSIONAL PIG BOOK® SUMMARY

“The Book Washington Doesn’t Want You to Read”
 

Praise for CAGW and the Pig Book

“Citizens Against Government Waste is Washington's leading opponent of pork-barrel spending. Its annual Pig Book, which lists the government's narrow giveaways, is used by news outlets worldwide to ridicule federal earmarks.” – Jeff Birnbaum, TheWashington Post, February 20, 2007.
“Every taxpayer should read the Pig Book…Congress won't stop picking our pockets for wasteful pork projects in which the federal government has no business unless they are forced to by taxpayers. Read the Pig Book and weep. Then, get angry and do something.” – Syndicated Columnist Cal Thomas, March 29, 2005
“Neither rain, nor sleet or snow, or war or a bumpy economy, it seems, can stop the pork train from
pulling out of the congressional station. Citizens Against Government Waste has issued its annual
Congressional Pig Book Summary… This year's budget may finally slay the myth that there is anyone who can credibly claim to be a fiscal conservative inside theWashington beltway.” – Asheville Citizen Times, April 17, 2004
“Citizens Against Government Waste is a watchdog group that keeps track of which politicians squander the most federal money on ‘pork’ – those expenditures that are added after the normal budget process to help a particular group instead of the nation as a whole. ” – John Stossell, 20/20
“I believe that this book should be read by every citizen in America…What is being done here by CAGW, in my view, is of the greatest importance. [M]y constituents…need to have these concrete examples of the way that business is done here in Washington, D.C., unfortunately, and the only way it’s going to stop is when it’s exposed.” – Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) (". . . the Republican candidate for president, simply doesn't do earmarks.")
“I commend Citizens Against Government Waste for trying to shame Congress into fiscal responsibility, although one has to wonder if Congress has any shame.You certainly don't get that impression by flipping through the Pig Book.” – Representative Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.)
“We can,with the assistance of an organization like CAGW, say in one year this [publication] is not needed.”
Former Representative David Minge (D-Minn.)
“Those peckerwoods don't know what they're doing. They don't. They're not being realistic.”
“The King of Pork” Senator Robert C. Byrd (D-W.Va.) – National Public Radio, July 19, 2001
“All they are is a bunch of psychopaths.”
CAGW“Oinker” Senator Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) – Associated Press, December 26, 1999
 
Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) is a private, nonprofit, nonpartisan
organization representing more than 1.2 million members and supporters nationwide.
CAGW’s mission is to eliminate waste,mismanagement, and inefficiency at all levels
of government.

 

INTRODUCTION

 
    If Washington, D.C. were to export a commodity, it would be rhetoric.
Politicians especially love to talk about fiscal responsibility. On
March 13, 2008 the Senate had an opportunity to test that rhetoric
when Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) offered an amendment to impose a
one-year moratorium on earmarks. Pork beat talk as the measure
failed by a vote of 29-71.
 
    In the House of Representatives, Republicans want a one-year
moratorium but will not unilaterally disarm. Democrats won’t
agree because of objections from big porkers such as House Defense
Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman John Murtha (D-Pa.). On
February 11, 2008, Roll Call noted, “Every private entity that
received a special project from the Pennsylvania
Democrat in last year’s defense spending bill had
given him political money at some

point since 2005. ” At his February 27, 2008 fundraiser for lobbyists,
Murtha received a standing ovation.

    The latest installment of Citizens Against Government Waste's
(CAGW) 18-year exposé of pork-barrel spending includes:
$3,000,000 for The First Tee; $1,950,000 for the Charles B. Rangel
Center for Public Service; and $188,000 for the Lobster Institute in
Maine.
    In fiscal year 2008, Congress stuffed 11,610 projects (the second
highest total ever) into the 12 appropriations bills worth $17.2 billion.
The 11,610 projects represent a 337 percent increase over the 2,658
projects in fiscal year 2007. The $17.2 billion is a 30 percent increase
over the fiscal year 2007 total of $13.2 billion. Only the Defense
and Homeland Security bills included earmarks in fiscal year 2007,
so comparisons of other bills are made between fiscal years 2008
and 2006. Total pork identified by CAGW since 1991 adds up to
$271 billion.


    Alaska led the nation with $556 per capita ($380 million). The
runners up were Hawaii with $221 per capita ($283 million) and
North Dakota with $208 per capita ($133 million).
The one glimmer of hope is that for the first time taxpayers were
able to see, for the most part, which members requested which
projects. Out of the 11,610 projects in the 2008 Pig Book there were
11,146 disclosed projects worth $13.8 billion and 464 undisclosed
projects worth $3.4 billion.
 
    To paraphrase Robert Frost: Taxpayers, and members of Congress,
still have many miles to go before they sleep without earmarks.
The 1,188 projects, totaling $2.8 billion, in this year’s Congressional
Pig Book Summary symbolize the most egregious and blatant
examples of pork. As in previous years, all of the items in the
Congressional Pig Book Summary meet at least one of CAGW’s
seven criteria, but most satisfy at least two:
    • Requested by only one chamber of Congress;
    • Not specifically authorized;
    • Not competitively awarded;
    • Not requested by the President;
    • Greatly exceeds the President’s budget request or the previous
year’s funding;
    • Not the subject of congressional hearings; or
    • Serves only a local or special interest.


I. AGRICULTURE
 
    Many appropriators find Agriculture pork yummy, but taxpayers
are left with a bad taste in their mouths. In 2006, the Agricultural
Research Service refused to release public budget documents. In
2007, the Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension
Service did not testify about individual special research grants.
Despite this lack of transparency, total pork spending decreased by
33.6 percent from $584 million in fiscal year 2006 to $388 million
in fiscal year 2008, while the number of projects increased by 22
percent from 502 in fiscal year 2006 to 614 in fiscal year 2008.
$15,115,446 for 17 projects by Senate Appropriations Committee
Ranking Member Thad Cochran (R-Miss.), including: $3,723,750
for a Natural Products Lab; $2,780,400 for the Jamie Whitten
Delta States Research Center; $1,075,419 for the Agricultural
Wildlife Conservation Center; $849,015 for genomics for southern
crop stress and disease research; $511,395 for biotechnology research;
and $229,383 for rural systems research.

 

$14,038,041 for 12 projects by Senate Agriculture Appropriations
Subcommittee Ranking Member Robert Bennett (R-Utah), including:
$5,560,800 for the Agricultural Research Center in Logan;
$2,616,555 for a Utah conservation initiative; $1,191,600 for function
genomics research; $559,059 for high performance computing; and
$186,684 for pasture and forage research.
$11,808,756 for 12 projects by Senate Appropriations Committee
Chairman Robert Byrd (D-W.Va.), including: $3,829,008 for the
Lost River Watershed Project; $3,226,257 for the GIS Center of
Excellence; $1,529,220 for the Appalachian Fruit Lab; $521,325
for aquaculture product and marketing development; and $112,209
for feed efficiency research.
$7,818,882 for 10 projects by Senate Agriculture Appropriations
Subcommittee Chairman Herb Kohl (D-Wis.), including: $2,502,360
for the Dairy Forage Agricultural Research Center in Prairie du
Sac; $1,861,875 for development of specialty markets; $346,557
for urban horticulture research; and $178,740 for the Dairy Business
Association (DBA), which according to its website, “is an industry
organization comprised of dairy producers, corporate and allied
industry supporters. The DBA promotes the growth and success of
all dairy farms in Wisconsin by fostering a positive business and
political environment.” Besides tax dollars, the DBA is financed by
companies such as Monsanto, EcoLab, and Smithfield Beef Group.
Total net income for the three companies in 2006 was $671.4 million.
$7,556,660 for grape and wine research. Wine is a popular beverage.
In fact, in 2006, per capita U.S. wine consumption was 2.39 gallons
while the U.S. exported 404.5 million liters of wine. Total wine
sales in 2006 were $27.8 billion. There is no pressing need for taxpayers
to pay for this research.

 

$6,025,524 for eight projects by Senate Agriculture Appropriations
Subcommittee member Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), including:
$2,085,300 for the Forage-Animal Production Research Facility;
$627,576 for health education leadership; $559,059 for new crop
opportunities; and $502,458 for precision agriculture.
$5,505,192 for eight projects by House Agriculture Appropriations
Subcommittee member Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio), including: $919,518
for income enhancement demonstration research; $845,043 for the
Center for Innovative Food Technology (one of the Center’s projects,
agritourism, “is when the public visits a working farm, ranch, winery
or any other type of agricultural operation for enjoyment, education,
outdoor activities, shopping or dining. You experience agritourism
when you go to a corn maze, watch cider being pressed, pick your
own apples, and take the kids to pick out their own pumpkin or
shop at a farm stand.”); $411,102 for wheat quality research; and
$407,130 for agriculture science research.

 

$4,840,875 for wood utilization research in 10 states requested by
nine representatives and 16 senators. Among the research areas is
“refinement of processing technology for laminated veneer lumber
for furniture, flooring, and other specialty industries.” As if no one
has ever done that before. This research has cost taxpayers $90.8
million since 1985.
$3,737,652 for six projects by Senate Agriculture Appropriations
Subcommittee member Richard Durbin (D-Ill.), including: $1,646,394
for the McDowell Grove Dam Rood Plain/Wetlands Restoration
Project in DuPage County; $107,244 for wildlife habitat improvement;
and $36,741 for conservation science at Lincoln Park Zoo. This
“free” zoo was established in 1868 after a pair of swans were given
to the Lincoln Park Commissioners. Today, the zoo can be rented
out for weddings, picnics, corporate events, and holiday parties.
$3,527,136 for six projects by House Agriculture Appropriations
Subcommittee member Sam Farr (D-Calif.), including: $1,869,819
for the U.S. Agricultural Research Station in Salinas; $425,997 for
the Monterey Bay Sanctuary; $380,319 for sustainable agriculture
research; and $222,432 for greenhouse lettuce germplasm. This
cabbage has cost taxpayers too much money.

 

$3,260,019 for four projects by Rep. Randy Neugebauer (R-Texas):
$1,709,946 for sorghum research and $1,550,073 for the Plant
Stress and Water Conservation Lab.
$3,207,390 for four projects by House Agriculture Appropriations
Subcommittee member Ray LaHood (R-Ill.), including: $1,869,819
for the National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research in
Peoria; $837,099 for crop production and food processing; and
$70,503 for the Illinois Buffer Initiative. Taxpayers need a buffer
zone from Rep. LaHood’s pork-barrel spending.
$3,148,803 for seven projects by Senate appropriator Ted Stevens
(R-Alaska), including: $968,175 for berry research; $818,232
for alternative salmon products; and $132,069 for native plant
commercialization.

 

$3,097,167 for shrimp aquaculture research in seven states by Senate
Appropriations Committee Ranking Member Thad Cochran (R-Miss.),
House appropriator Ed Pastor (D-Ariz.), and Reps. Raul Grijalva
(D-Texas), Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), and Richard Neal (D-Mass.).
In the past, USDA has testified that, “The goal of this program is
to develop a sustainable domestic shrimp farming industry in the
United States.” The timeline for this achievement appears to be
indefinite. Since 1985, $68.7 million has been appropriated for
this research.
$2,691,030 for four projects by House Appropriations Committee
Chairman David Obey (D-Wis.), including: $1,843,008 for the
University of Wisconsin–Stevens Point Geographic Information
System; $368,403 for the Red Cliff Tribal Hatchery; and $294,921
for potato pest management.

 

$1,971,105 by House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee
Chairwoman Rosa DeLauro (D-Ct.): $1,229,334 for mosquito
trapping research/West Nile Virus; $523,311 for invasive aquatic
weeds; and $218,466 for vector-borne diseases.
$1,769,526 for five projects by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid
(D-Nev.), including: $1,117,125 for Mormon crickets; $365,424
for the Nevada arid rangelands initiative; and $36,741 for weed
management.
$1,618,590 for four projects by Rep.Allen Boyd (D-Fla.), including:
$709,995 for Suwanee, Dixie, and Lafayette counties dairy and
poultry waste treatment; $329,676 for oyster post harvest treatment;
and $283,998 for the Green Institute. The Institute’s mission is
“sustaining the environment and our communities through practical
innovation. Our vision is shared by the thousands of people who
donate and purchase our quality reclaimed and green building
materials, design and construct green buildings, generate clean energy,
learn how to manage storm water and landscape sustainably, and
work together to conserve and restore our environment.” One of
its programs, Gardenworks, is “to improve urban livability with
green space. Our green spaces are an indispensable part of the
urban environment: beautifying neighborhoods, reducing heating
& cooling costs, lowering stress, cleaning the air, providing food
and income, increasing biodiversity, lowering crime, and improving
water quality in our lakes and rivers.” Lowering stress and crime?

 

$1,335,585 for seven projects by Senate appropriator Patrick
Leahy (D-Vt.), including: $335,634 for environmentally safe
products; $261,159 for the Center for Rural Studies; and $97,314
for maple research. This has really put taxpayers in a sticky situation.
$742,764 by Rep. Mike Thompson (D-Calif.) for olive fruit fly
research. Part of this money, $211,509, is to be spent in Paris, France.
$460,752 by for hops research requested by two representatives
and four senators. Hops is a main ingredient in beer, and according
to “Here’s to Beer,” a website designed to increase the image of
beer, consumption of beer in 2006 constituted 85 percent of all
alcohol consumption and 52 percent of all alcohol sales. In addition,
the website states that “nearly 40 percent of the U.S. population are
regular beer consumers.”
$259,173 for floriculture research by Senate appropriator Daniel
Inouye (D-Hawaii), Sen. Daniel Akaka (D-Hawaii) and Rep.
Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii). According to a September 13, 2007,
Star Bulletin article, “Hawaii's floriculture and nursery products
brought in an estimated $100.7 million last year, new state data
indicates, a bright spot in the state’s diversified agricultural sector.
Flowers and plants grown in Hawaii have plenty of potential to
flourish, with last year’s numbers holding steady at the $100 million
mark – close to the record of $101 million set in 2005.” Surely, the
industry can afford .25 percent of its blooming revenue to do its
own research. Since 1995, CAGW’s Pig Book has identified $3.8
million in pork for this research.

 

$172,782 for the National Wild Turkey Federation in Edgefield,
S.C. According to the Federation’s website, “conservation partners
and grassroots members have raised and spent more than $258 million
upholding hunting traditions and conserving more than 13.1 million
acres of wildlife habitat.” Once proposed as the national bird by
Ben Franklin, the average American ate 16.9 pounds of turkey in
2006. Turkey consumption has increased 108 percent since 1970.
The turkeys produced in 2005 weighed 7.2 billion pounds and
were valued at $3.2 billion. This earmark makes taxpayers feel like
big fat turkeys.
$148,950 by Sens.Max Baucus (D-Mont.) and John Tester (D-Mont.)
for the Montana Sheep Institute. According to the organization’s
website, “The Montana Sheep Institute (MSI) is a cooperative project
between Montana Wool Growers Association and Montana State
University. The MSI is dedicated to developing and implementing
non-traditional adjustment strategies that will increase the competitiveness
of Montana's lamb and wool in the world market. Our
goal is to explore opportunities to increase the utilization of sheep
in weed management programs and improve the profitability and
competitiveness of the Montana Sheep Industry.” This is a b-a-a-a-a-d
earmark. Since 2002, CAGW’s Pig Book has identified $2.8 million
in pork for this research.

 

II. COMMERCE, JUSTICE, SCIENCE
 
    In 2006 the once-named “Commerce, Justice, State Appropriations
Act” was renamed the “Science, Departments of State, Justice, and
Commerce, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act (SSJC).” In
2008, the name has been changed yet again, and now it is known
as the Commerce, Justice, Science Appropriations Act (CJS). With
all of these name changes, appropriators may have grown tired of
spending as much money on pork as they did in the past. The number
of projects decreased by 13 percent, from 1,987 in fiscal year 2006
to 1,731 in fiscal year 2008. The dollar amount decreased by 47
percent from $1.9 billion to $1 billion.
$146,708,000 for 63 projects by CJS Appropriations Subcommittee
Ranking Member Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), including: $5,640,000
for the Marshall Space Flight Center; $470,000 for a National
Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)Maritime Museum
in Mobile; $329,000 for American Village Citizenship Trust Montevallo
for character programs in at-risk areas (the group’s website boasts
that its mission is to “…to strengthen and renew the foundations of
American liberty and self-government through citizenship education.”
In addition to these lofty goals, young lovers can rent out the
chapel and the barn to get married for $2,650.); $235,000 for the
Foley Police Department for communications upgrades; and
$235,000 for West Alabama Marine Shrimp and Fish Aquaculture
to develop new methods and find efficiency in the development of
marine shrimp and fish aquaculture using ponds and the salinic
water of West Alabama.

 

$56,259,000 for 21 projects by Senate Appropriations Committee
Ranking Member Thad Cochran (R-Miss.), including: $11,280,000
for the Stennis Space Center; $7,520,000 for the Center for Marine
Aquaculture (according to the senator’s website, “Funding will be
used to create, develop, and commercialize new technology to meet
America’s demand for warm water marine seafood. This program will
lay the basis for the development of a new industry for Mississippi
and the Gulf of Mexico region.”); and $1,175,000 for Jackson
State University for computer software and mapping.
$19,035,000 for 19 projects by Senate CJS Appropriations Subcommittee
member Ted Stevens (R-Alaska), including: $3,478,000
for the harbor seal and stellar sea lion protection program for
management measures to protect harbor seals and stellar sea lions
in partnership with the National Marine Fisheries Service and the
Alaska Sea Life Center; $2,820,000 for the Native American/Native
Alaskan Liaison Office; $1,128,000 for Big Brothers/Big Sisters of
Alaska Eagle River for an at-risk youth mentoring program;
$188,000 for monitoring and restoration of salmon stocks to allow
the monitoring and restoration of depressed salmon stocks under
the management of one organization, the Bering Sea Fishermen's
Association.

 

$11,972,075 for 17 projects by Senate CJS Appropriations
Subcommittee Chairwoman Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.), including:
$2,350,000 for Teach for America, New York, to engage teachers
in science, technology, engineering and mathematics through the
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA); $893,000
for the National Aquarium in Baltimore Conservation and Education
Programs for conservation and education programs of the marine
environment National Aquarium of Baltimore; $178,600 for Johns
Hopkins University Baltimore for the Johns Hopkins Prisoner Career
Re-Entry Program to provide job training and placement.
$4,638,900 for 24 projects by House CJS Subcommittee Chairman
Alan Mollohan (D-W.Va.), including: $846,000 for a distance
learning program at Fairmont State University; $540,500 for an
independent verification and validation research program through
NASA; $282,000 for the Micronauts Education Simulator at
Wheeling Jesuit University; and $188,000 for the Glenville State
College Anti-Recidivism Prisoner Education Program.

 

$2,820,000 for four projects by Rep. Chaka Fattah (D-Pa.):
$1,880,000 for the Educational Advancement Alliance Math, Science,
and Technology Program; $846,000 for the Father's Day Rally
Committee Inc. Men United Program in Philadelphia; $47,000 for
the Grands As Parents Very Important People (VIP) Program in
Philadelphia; and $47,000 for a mural arts program for at-risk
youth in Philadelphia. Rep. Fattah started securing the funding for
the four projects in the middle of a heated battle to win the Democratic
nomination for mayor of Philadelphia. Both he and the taxpayers lost.
$2,726,000 by House appropriator James Walsh (R-N.Y.):
$1,598,000 for the Monroe County drug analysis module and
$1,128,000 for an Onondaga County records management project.

 

$2,350,000 for 10 projects by House appropriator Jose Serrano (DN.
Y.), including: $940,000 for Bronx River restoration; $282,000
for Latino Pastoral Action Center programs for at-risk youth in the
Bronx; and $94,000 for El Museo del Barrio educational programs
in the Bronx for at-risk youth. This museum had net assets of
more than $3.6 million at the end of 2006.

 

$1,648,850 for the Shedd Aquarium by Senate appropriator Richard
Durbin (D-Ill), Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.), House appropriator
Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) and Rep. Danny Davis (D-Ill.). The aquarium’s
website says the facility was a “gift to the people of Chicago from
John Graves Shedd, president and chairman of the board of Marshall
Fields & Company.” This aquarium receives 2 million visitors per
year and has 36 corporate benefactors. At the end of 2004 (the last
year for which information is available), the aquarium had a fund
balance of approximately $200 million. Those are some liquid assets.
 
$1,339,500 by Sens. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Hillary Clinton
(D-N.Y.), and Rep. Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) for the Abyssinian
Development Corporation. According to a January 24, 2008
CNSNews.com article, “Clinton teamed with senior New York Sen.
Charles Schumer and New York Rep. Charles Rangel, both Democrats,
to provide three earmarks for the Abyssinian Development Corporation
(ADC). The ADC is a separate non-profit community development
organization…that focuses on increasing quality housing, delivering
social services, and boosting economic and educational opportunities
in Harlem. Clinton accepted credit for the Abyssinian earmarks
and other earmarks in a statement released in December saying, ‘I
am proud that these funds will help support critical investments in
New York City – from strengthening community programs for our
children to supporting the city’s colleges and universities to cleaning
up our waterways.’”

 

$1,081,000 for six projects by Rep. Nydia Velazquez (D-N.Y.),
including: $282,000 for Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy at-risk
youth programs; $235,000 for the Project for Public Spaces for
preservation and revitalization of the Moore Street Market; and
$188,000 for Brooklyn Arts Council at-risk youth programs.
$705,000 by House appropriator and CAGW2007 Porker of the
Year recipient John Murtha (D-Pa.) for Concurrent Technologies
Corporation Corrections Learning Environment. According to a
January 14, 2008 article in The New York Times, “In 1991, Mr.
Murtha used a $5 million earmark to create the National Defense
Center for Environmental Excellence in Johnstown to develop
anti-pollution technology for the military. Since then, it has garnered
more than $670 million in contracts and earmarks. Meanwhile it is
managed by another contractor Mr.Murtha helped create, Concurrent
Technologies, a research operation that somehow was allowed to
be set up as a tax-exempt charity, according to The Washington
Post. Thanks to Mr. Murtha, Concurrent has boomed; the annual
salary for its top three executives averages $462,000.”
$446,500 by Sens. Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) and Mark Pryor (D-Ark.),
and Rep. John Boozman (R-Ark.) for the Arkansas World
Trade Center (AWTC). Funding will support efforts to develop
international trade initiatives in Northwest Arkansas at the University
of Arkansas. Created in 2006, the AWTC was established to “promote
international trade throughout the state and region.” As an investor
level contributor ($5,000), one is entitled to “[F]ull business support,
with free use of conference rooms up to four hours, use of fax machine,
copy machine and local phone usage, free domestic video conference
and 5 meetings per year at no charge up to 4 hours per event (max
audience 75).” Needless to say, with their “contribution” of
$446,500, taxpayers should be able to use this conference center
for free.
$263,200 by Senate appropriator Jack Reed (D-R.I.) and Sen. Sheldon
Whitehouse (D-R.I.) for American Sailing Training Association
Newport for after-school programs for at-risk youth to reduce truancy
and delinquency.

 

$188,000 by Sens. Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) and Susan Collins
(R-Maine), and Rep. Thomas Allen (D-Maine) for the Lobster
Institute. The group’s website says, “The LOBSTER INSTITUTE
is a cooperative program of research and education with the lobster
industry at the University of Maine…” Not only has the Lobster
Institute been working on its “Lobster Cam (TheLobstercam.com),”
one its major accomplishments has been lobster dog biscuits:
“Your dog can now be a lobster connoisseur. Blue Seal Feeds, Inc.
has launched the newest addition to its dog biscuit line – Blue Seal
Lobster ‘Bisque-its’ – based on a concept devised by the Lobster
Institute at The University of Maine, and their commercialization
partner Saltwater Marketing LLC.” That isn’t much of a treat for
taxpayers.
 
III. DEFENSE
 
    Former Rep. Randy “Duke” Cunningham (R-Calif.) is in jail because
of bribes he accepted from defense contractors in exchange for
earmarks; on February 27, 2008 House Defense Appropriations
Subcommittee Chairman John Murtha (D-Pa.) received a standing
ovation at a fundraiser for defense lobbyists. On February 11,
2008, Roll Call noted, “Every private entity that received a special
project from the Pennsylvania Democrat in last year’s defense
spending bill had given him political money at some point since
2005” There are no two better examples to illustrate the problems
with defense earmarks. When members of Congress gorge themselves
on defense pork, America’s fighting men and women are not getting
the proper equipment that they need to fight the war on terror
around the globe. While every penny of defense funds should be
wisely spent, at least there was a reduction in the number of porkbarrel
projects by 19 percent from 2,618 in fiscal year 2007 to 2,108
in fiscal year 2008, while the total cost decreased by 32 percent,
from $10.8 billion in fiscal year 2007 to $7.3 billion in fiscal year 2008.
$173,200,000 for 25 projects by Senate Defense Appropriations
Subcommittee Chairman Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii), including:
$25,000,000 for the Hawaii Federal Health Care Network;
$23,000,000 for the Maui Space Surveillance System operations &
research; $10,000,000 for the National Defense Center of Excellence
for Research in Ocean Sciences; $5,000,000 for the Maui High
Performance Computing Center; $3,500,000 for Army conservation
and ecosystem management; $3,000,000 for the Hawaii National
Guard Counter-Drug Program; and $2,000,000 for Brown Tree Snakes.
$165,700,000 for 22 projects by Senate Defense Appropriations
Subcommittee Ranking Member Ted Stevens (R-Alaska), including:
$44,200,000 for the Access to Joint Tanana Training Complex;
$11,000,000 for the Intermodal Marine Facility – Port ofAnchorage;
and $3,200,000 for the High Frequency Active Auroral Research
Program (HAARP). While the official stated goal of HAARP is to
“further advance our knowledge of the physical and electrical
properties of the Earth's ionosphere which can affect our military
and civilian communication and navigation systems,” conspiracy
theories abound from it being a weapon of mass destruction to it being
able to manipulate weather conditions around the globe. The truth is
that the project has received $111.3 million in pork since 1995.

 

$144,624,000 for 26 projects by Senate Appropriations Committee
Chairman Robert Byrd (D-W.Va.), including: $54,000,000 for the
ABL Facility Restoration Program (according to an October 3,
2006 article in the Cumberland Times News, “Alliant Techsystems,
also known asATK, as the primary leasee of the Navy’sABL facility,
will benefit most from the improvements to the facility,…‘ATK is
very pleased that Senator Byrd has continued to support the facility
restoration program at [ABL]…. The upgrades … have allowed us
to expand our business and offer the Department of Defense a wide
range of quality products for our war fighters.’”); $18,000,000 for
the AFIP Records Digitization Program; $5,600,000 for the Joint
Interagency Training and Education Center; $4,800,000 for the
AutonomousMaritime Navigation Program; $2,400,000 for economic
production of coal-to-liquid fuels; $2,400,000 for research to reduce
the environmental impact of coal-to-liquid fuels; and $900,000 for
the Electronic Commodity Program.
$121,400,000 for 44 projects by House Defense Appropriations
Subcommittee Chairman John Murtha (D-Pa.), including

$23,000,000 for the National Drug Intelligence Center (NDIC).
Rep. Murtha became infuriated by Rep. Mike Rogers’ (R-Mich.)
motion to remove the NDIC earmark. According to Rogers, Rep.
Murtha warned, “I hope you don’t have any earmarks in the defense
appropriations bills because they are gone and you will not get any
earmarks now and forever.…That’s the way I do it.” Since 1992,
more than $509 million has been used to fund NDIC, which is
administered by the Department of Justice (DOJ.). But DOJ has
asked Congress to shut the NDIC down because its operations are
duplicative. This project helped Rep. Murtha win CAGW’s 2007
Porker of the Year award.

 

$92,800,000 for 47 projects by House Defense Appropriations
Subcommittee Ranking Member Bill Young (R-Fla.), including:
$4,500,000 for comprehensive maritime domain awareness;
$3,000,000 for multi-jurisdictional counter-drug task force training;
$1,200,000 for the Advanced Dynamic Optics Program;
$1,000,000 for atmospheric water harvesting; and $1,000,000 for
advanced battery technology.
$86,000,000 for 32 projects by House appropriator Jerry Lewis
(R-Calif.), including: $5,000,000 for the Center for Innovative
Geospatial Technology; $2,400,000 for the National Eye Evaluation
and Research Network for clinical trials of orphan retinal degenerative
diseases; $2,400,000 for National Center for Research on Evaluation,
Standards, and Student Testing skill set analysis; $2,400,000 for
the Lewis Center for Education Research (The center is described
on its website as “a unique educational facility designed to improve
educational effectiveness and scientific literacy among American
schoolchildren.”); $1,600,000 for the Technology Commercialization
and Management Network; and $1,600,000 for microsatellite serial
manufacturing.

 

$35,200,000 for 17 projects by House Defense Appropriations
Subcommittee member Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio), including:
$4,000,000 for an enhanced detection adjunct processor; $2,400,000
for the Center for Solar Electricity and Hydrogen; $2,000,000 for
the Northern Ohio Integrated Command Operations Program; and
$1,000,000 for internal base facility energy independence –
wind/turbine.
$26,800,000 for 14 projects by House Defense Appropriations
Subcommittee member Norm Dicks (D-Wash.), including:
$4,000,000 for the Northwest Maritime Information and Littoral
Operations Program; $1,600,000 for the Open Source Naval and
Missile Database Reporting System; $1,200,000 for the National
Bureau for Asian Research (according to the Bureau’s website, it is
“a nonprofit, nonpartisan research institution dedicated to informing
and strengthening policy in the Asia-Pacific.”); and $1,000,000 for
the Puget Sound Navy Museum.

 

$4,800,000 by Rep. AnthonyWeiner (D-N.Y.) for the Jamaica Bay
Unit of the Gateway National Recreation Area. The Gateway National
Recreation Area’s website describes the Jamaica Bay Unit as “a
wealth of history, nature and recreation, from New York City's first
major airport and coastal fortifications to a wildlife refuge and
pristine beaches.” A nice place to swim away with defense dollars.
$3,000,000 by House MajorityWhip James Clyburn (D-S.C.) for
The First Tee, whose purpose, according to its website, is “To impact
the lives of young people by providing learning facilities and
educational programs that promote character development and life enhancing
values through the game of golf.” If The First Tee
wanted money to spread its teachings to the military, it could ask
its numerous corporate sponsors, who would likely respond with at
least $3 million. Rep. Clyburn told CNBC on November 27, 2007
that the program will help “make generals and colonels.” Apparently,
after hundreds of years of military operations without having such
a program, it was critical to add The First Tee in conference, in the
middle of the war on terrorism.

 

$1,600,000 by Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) for the Allen Telescope
Array. This project first appeared in the 2005 Congressional Pig
Book and has received a total of $5.6 million. It is part of SETI
(Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence), which describes the telescope
as “cutting-edge astronomical research and a simultaneous search
for signals of intelligent, extraterrestrial origin.” The Pentagon
should classify this as an Unidentified Fiscal Object.
$1,600,000 by Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) for the Pat Roberts
Intelligence Scholars Program (PRISP). According to the Central
Intelligence Agency (CIA), “PRISP provides monetary incentive to
college students who pursue studies in critical language specialties,
area studies, and technical and scientific specialties. A 2005 article
in the Chronicle of Higher Education noted that, “This pilot project
– the Pat Roberts Intelligence Scholars Program – is seen by some
observers as a long-overdue effort to remedy the federal government's
collective ignorance about foreign lands. Other scholars, however,
view the semisecret program as a profound threat to universities’
integrity and to the ethical norms of social science.”

 

$800,000 by Rep. Mike Thompson (D-Calif.) for extended shelf
life produce for remotely deployed forces. This sounds suspiciously
like a 2007 Congressional Pig Book project: $1,650,000 by Senate
appropriator Patty Murray (D-Wash.) to improve the shelf life of
vegetables.
One of the more astounding aspects of the 2008 Defense
Appropriations Act is the 62 projects worth $2.3 billion that were
undisclosed, including:
    $588,000,000 to accelerate the building of a second Virginia Class
Submarine. Even though the earmark was technically undisclosed,
Rep. Joe Courtney (D-Ct.) took credit for it in a press release dated
November 13, 2007. According to an article in The Hill, “In a report
to Congress, the Navy said boosting the production of submarines
early would disrupt its overall shipbuilding plan by shifting $5.1
billion from other important programs.”
    $9,800,000 for the Space Fence. According to a February 5, 2008
Aerospace Daily & Defense Report article, “The Air Force plans to
delay the fielding of its revamped Space Fence – a distributed
group of ground-based sensors designed to track objects in space
as they orbit. Initial operational capability is now set at 2015.”
InsideDefense.com reported on December 23, 2006 that “The
funding cuts to the so-called ‘Space Fence’ program are included
in an internal Pentagon budget document known as program decision
memorandum IV, signed by Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon
England earlier this month, according to the Air Force. While the
memo itself is not intended for public release, details about the cuts
were included in a ‘future year funding’ document posted on the
Hanscom Air Force Base’s Space Fence business opportunities
Web site.”

 

IV. ENERGY AND WATER
 
    While totals are down elsewhere, pork skyrocketed in the fiscal
year 2008 Energy and Water Appropriations Act. The number of
projects increased 89.2 percent, from 942 in fiscal year 2006 to
1,782 in fiscal year 2008, while dollar amounts increased a whopping
142 percent, from $1.6 billion in fiscal year 2006 to $3.8 billion in
fiscal year 2008. The Army Corps of Engineers program has long
been a bastion for pork, and this trend continued in fiscal year 2008.
$92,033,216 for 25 projects by Senate appropriator Mary Landrieu
(D-La.), including $1,850,000 for the removal of aquatic growth
and $1,180,800 for materials and energy research at Tulane University
in New Orleans.
$82,164,000 by Senate appropriator Patty Murray (D-Wash.) forColumbia River fish mitigation in Washington, Oregon, and Idaho.This project funds bypass facilities for migratory salmon and steelheadfish at the multiple dams along the Columbia River.

$57,655,568 for 31 projects by Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), including:$3,444,000 for Tar Creek cleanup; $984,000 for the University of Oklahoma in Norman for the large scale application of single-wallnanotubes; $201,720 for restoration of Joe Creek; $21,648 for Bartlesville water supply; and $246,000 for the OklahomaComprehensive Water Plan.$48,807,560 for 25 projects by Senate appropriator Ted Stevens(R-Alaska), including: $5,904,000 for research at the Institute for

Molecular Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles;
$492,000 to deepen Anchorage Harbor; and $214,512 to combat
erosion at Kenai River Bluff.
$45,677,328 for 24 projects by Senate Appropriations Committee
Ranking Member Thad Cochran (R-Miss.), including: $27,643,472
directed to the Yazoo River and Basin, a plan long derided as wasteful,
with an estimated cost of $200 million, which would drain thousands
of acres of wetlands and forests in order to increase useable farm
land; $1,968,000 for bioengineering research training at Jackson
State University; $590,400 for the University of Mississippi Medical
Center for research in the areas of increasing efficiency by reducing
the amount of contrast media needed for certain procedures; and
$3,936,000 for the Center for Advanced Vehicular Systems at
Mississippi State University.
$33,382,200 for 16 projects by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid
(D-Nev.), including: $2,681,400 for the Center for Materials
Reliability at the University of Nevada, Reno; $1,968,000 for the
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering for continued
expansion of the James E. Rogers and Louis Weiner Jr. Large-Scale
Structures Laboratory at the University of Nevada, Reno; $984,000
for the University of Nevada, Reno, for a Fire Science Academy at
Elko; $738,000 for a technology transfer initiative at the University
of Nevada, Reno; and $590,400 for operations and maintenance at
the Atomic Testing Museum in Las Vegas.
$22,716,664 for 18 projects by Senate appropriator Dianne Feinstein
(D-Calif.), including $1,574,400 for a cooperative agreement
between the Department of Energy and Inyo County and $107,256
for long term sediment management at Humbolt Bay.
$787,200 by House appropriator Betty McCollum (D-Minn.) for
advanced green design at the Museum of Natural History in
Minneapolis. Admission to the museum is free to University of
Minnesota faculty, staff, and students, while adults are charged $5.
$770,472 by Sens. Joe Biden (D-Del.) and Thomas Carper (D-Del.)
for oyster revitalization in the Delaware Bay. In its heyday,
Delaware Bay provided a world-class source of oysters. However,
due to disease and over fishing, oyster populations have been on
the decline. This shell planting and seed transplant project is an
effort to revitalize the supply of oysters in the New Jersey and
Delaware waters of Delaware Bay.
$738,000 by Senate Energy and Water Appropriations Subcommittee
Ranking Member Pete Domenici (R-N.M.) for the National Museum
of Nuclear Science and History site in Albuquerque. According to
the museum’s website, it is the nation’s only congressionally chartered
museum of nuclear science and history, and attempts to “convey
the diversity of individuals and events that shape the historical and
technical context of the nuclear age.” Admission is $6 for adults.
$492,000 by Sens. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) and George Voinovich
(R-Ohio) for Rolls-Royce Fuel Cell Systems (US) Inc., to develop
a solid oxide fuel cell at the Fuel Cell Prototyping Center at Stark
State College of Technology in Canton. Rolls-Royce Group reported
a net profit of £600 million, or more than $1.2 billion in 2007,
meaning the company could take .041 percent of its profit and pay
for the research itself.
$492,000 by Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) for bulk production
of metallic glass. Produced by cooling metals from liquid to solid
while preventing crystallization, metallic glass is much stronger
and more elastic than traditional metals. These unique characteristics
have scientists predicting a multitude of possible uses, including an
armor piercing projectile, electric transformers, and even golf
clubs; industries that may benefit should fund this research.
$492,000 by Senate appropriator Wayne Allard (R-Colo.) for the
Rocky Flats Cold War Museum. The intention of this proposed
museum is to highlight the role of Rocky Flats in manufacturing
nuclear weapons during the ColdWar. After production at Rocky
Flats ended in 1992, it was discovered that the area suffered from
environmental contamination associated with nuclear weapons.
After a period of remediation, the idea is to create a museum on an
adjacent piece of land. According to its website, the Rocky Flats
ColdWar Museum will include artifacts such as “glove boxes,
storage containers, photographs, building diagrams, respirators and
protective suits, radiation measuring instruments, hand scanners,
gloves, signs and the Tepee from anti-nuclear demonstrations, and
a security station.”
$196,800 by House appropriator Ray LaHood (R-Ill.) for green
building technologies at Lakeview Museum in Peoria. A February
2, 2008 Rockford Register Star article provided a glimpse into the
mind of appropriators when it quoted Rep. LaHood as saying, “The
reason I went on the Appropriations Committee, the reason other
people go on the Appropriations Committee is they know that it
puts them in a position to know where the money is at, to know the
people who are doling the money out and to be in the room when
the money is being doled out.”

 

V. FINANCIAL SERVICES

$2,400,000 by Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Robert
Byrd (D-W.Va.) for renovations to Haddad Riverfront Park. On
February 1, 2008 The Charleston Gazette quoted Chairman Byrd
as saying, “Maintaining and improving Haddad Riverfront Park is
a top priority for the city of Charleston.” If it is so important, the
51,342 residents of Charleston could each pay $46.75 to the city
instead of forcing the price tag on the hundreds of millions of
Americans who probably will never visit the facility.
$625,000 by House Appropriations Committee Ranking Member
Jerry Lewis (R-Calif.) for the Congressional Cemetery inWashington,
D.C. The cemetery is supposed to be a historic landmark, but
according to the website of the organization established to preserve
the cemetery, a “prominent U.S. Senator” said that he “had never
heard of it.” Locally, the cemetery is best known as an open space
where, for an annual membership fee, Capitol Hill residents can let
their dogs run free.
$500,000 by House Appropriations Committee Ranking Member
Jerry Lewis (R-Calif.) for unspecified upgrades to Barracks Row,
an upscale neighborhood eight blocks from the U.S. Capitol Building.
Rep. Lewis felt it necessary to appropriate funds even though the
Barracks Row website claims “business is booming.” Lewis
stated, “…the return on the federal investment is difficult to measure,
but it’s truly immeasurable in my mind’s eye.” The picture becomes
clearer when one learns that Rep. Lewis’wife, who is also his chief
of staff, owns a residence four blocks from Barracks Row.

 

VI. HOMELAND SECURITY
 
    One of the two appropriations bills passed in fiscal year 2008 that
can be compared with fiscal year 2007 is the 2008 Department of
Homeland Security (DHS) Appropriations Act. While the threat of
terrorism and natural disasters has not disappeared, Congress’
appetite for homeland security pork has diminished. The number
of projects went from 40 in fiscal year 2007 to 124 in fiscal year
2008, while total dollars dropped by 87.8 percent from $2.4 billion
in fiscal year 2007 to $294.8 million in fiscal year 2008. Nonetheless,
every penny of pork in the homeland security bill reduces the
ability of the government to defend the nation.
    $51,131,119 for 95 projects airdropped into the conference report
for Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Predisaster
Mitigation by 72 members of the House of Representatives, spread
among 31 states. That equals 76.7 percent of the number of projects
and 17.3 percent of the dollar amount in the bill. According to
FEMA’s website, the purpose of the Predisaster Mitigation Program
is to provide funds to states, territories, Indian tribal governments,
communities, and universities for hazard mitigation planning and
implementation of mitigation projects prior to a disaster. The recipient
of the grant decides based on applications what is most deserving
within its jurisdiction. In fiscal year 2008, the program had a
budget request of $100 million. Many members of Congress have
criticized FEMA for its mismanagement of numerous programs
over the past several years. However, they are making the
agency’s job harder by forcing staff to administer projects that may
not meet the competitive program’s criteria and usurping the
agency’s authority.
$50,000,000 for REAL ID grants. The REAL ID Act, which set
federal minimum standards for authenticating and securing driver’s
licenses supposedly to thwart terrorism, was buried in an $82 billion
supplemental military spending bill and passed without congressional
debate in May 2005. While the proposal to use radio-frequency
identification (RFID) technology in the state-issued driver’s licenses
was dropped by DHS in February, 2007, the REAL ID program
remains a burden on taxpayers, at an estimated cost of $23 billion.
Passed as an unfunded mandate, the REAL ID Act stipulated that a
state would not receive any future federal funds designed to help
offset the cost of the program if it did not follow the minimum federal
standards for updating licenses. Bringing state driver’s licenses
systems up to date with adequate security provisions will be a
costly endeavor; adding further requirements such as developing a
new database to store information will be technologically challenging
and add to the cost. Ultimately, taxpayers will be forced to both
pay more for their driver’s licenses and be subject to tax increases
to help offset the expenditures that are not covered by the higher
license fees.
$3,000,000 by House MajorityWhip James Clyburn (D-S.C.) for
the South Carolina Adjutant General’s Office of Emergency
Preparedness, for projects in Santee and Manning. With groundbreaking
made possible by the $1.5 million directed toward Santee
in this project, the town will receive the convention center it has
long sought. The Times and Democrat on January 26, 2008 noted
that Santee Mayor Silas Seabrooks had previously called Rep.
Clyburn about the possibility of funds for a conference center.
According to the article, that is when the eight-term representative
got an idea: “The light went off in my head. What’s wrong with
having a conference center which could also serve in the case of an
emergency as an evacuation center. So, we wanted this facility that
will not only accommodate conferences, but one that could be here
… to save lives.” The new facility is being cited for its role as a
conference center, not as an evacuation center. Gregg Robinson,
executive director of the Orangeburg County Economic Development
Commission, explained in the same article, “…we will see the
opportunities and spin-offs in retail and commercial development
that come with it and all of the benefits of tourism dollars that
come to Santee.” Rep. Clyburn managed to pull the wool over the
eyes of his colleagues and the taxpayers to secure money for a
conference center that would have otherwise gone unfunded, at
least with federal dollars.
$150,000 by House Homeland SecurityAppropriations Subcommittee
member Jose Serrano (D-N.Y.) for the Citizens Advice Bureau
(CAB) in New York. Using a “holistic approach to community
development,” CAB’s mission, according to its website, is to improve
the economic and social well-being of individuals, families and
communities who are most in need. This has nothing to do with
protecting the country from natural disasters or the threat of terrorism.

 

VII. INTERIOR
 
    The fiscal year 2008 Interior Appropriations Act is once again a
mixture of resource management, National Park Service (NPS) and
wastewater earmarks. The Save America’s Treasure (SAT) Program
in the NPS continues to exemplify the problems with pork. President
Clinton established SAT in 1998. The program requires that funding
from the federal government be matched by other sources of funding,
such as state, local, and/or private. While all funding was intended
to be awarded competitively, that process has been hijacked by
members of Congress, who earmark half of the money for projects
that were not requested by the NPS. The good news is that the
number of projects in the bill decreased by 25 percent from 737 to
556 from fiscal year 2006 to fiscal year 2008 and spending decreased
by 40 percent, from $669.5 million in fiscal year 2006 to $403.8
million in fiscal year 2008.
$32,391,682 for 10 projects by Senate Interior Appropriations
Subcommittee Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), including
$9,844,000 for the San Joaquin Valley and South Coast Air Quality
Management Districts for targeted emission reduction grants and
$7,875,200 for Hunter's Point Naval Shipyard cleanup. According
to a January 12, 2007 article in The San Francisco Chronicle,
Hunter’s Point may be an option for a new football stadium:
“Feinstein has also been involved in renewed stadium talks between
the 49ers and Mayor Gavin Newsom’s administration, which recently
offered an alternative stadium site at the former Hunters Point
Naval Shipyard.”
$16,833,240 for eight projects by Senate Interior Appropriations
Subcommittee member Ted Stevens (R-Alaska), including:
$3,937,600 for the Tongass Timber Supply Pipeline; $3,937,600
for the United States Geological Survey Volcano Observatory;
$2,953,200 for the Alaska Conveyance Program; and $492,200 for
the Craig Recreation land transfer.
$16,058,517 for 15 projects by Senate Appropriations Committee
Chairman Robert Byrd (D-W.Va.), including: $2,953,200 for the
Mingo County Redevelopment Authority for water and sewer
improvements; $1,646,901 for theWood Education and Resource
Center (one of the center’s workshops, “Helping theWood Products
Industry Profit From the Next 10 Years,” explains exactly why
taxpayers would be better off not funding wood research);
$1,830,984 for Monongahela National Forest Road improvements;
and $123,050 for a Mother's Day Shrine in Grafton (population
5,489, with a land area of 3.8 square miles).
$8,204,973 for 13 projects by Senate Appropriations Committee
Ranking Member Thad Cochran (R-Miss.), including: $1,525,820
for the Town of Flora for a drinking water and wastewater
construction pro$5,906,400 by Rep. Heath Shuler (D-N.C.) for Great Smokey
National Park, North Shore Road Settlement. Taxpayers thought
they would be a getting a break when North Carolina porker
extraordinaire Charles Taylor lost the 2006 election to Rep. Shuler.
While campaigning, Rep. Shuler criticized Taylor’s use of earmarks,
and upon election, in a December 31, 2006 interview with US
News & World Report, Shuler said, “We have to find a much better
way to balance our budget and use tax dollars much more
wisely…And if we don't have the money, then we don't need to
spend the money.” It did not take long for Rep. Shuler to catch
“Potomac Fever” and renounce his pledge to spend money wisely.
$4,872,780 for five projects by House Interior Appropriations
Subcommittee Chairman Norm Dicks (D-Wash.), including:
$1,968,800 for Mason County for wastewater infrastructure
improvements for Belfair; $1,476,600 for National Fish and
Wildlife Foundation endangered species grants; and $246,100 for
Bremerton Public Library restoration.ject; $984,400 for construction at the Okhissa Lake
RecreationArea; $689,080 for the NASAStennis Space Center to
fund healthy forest restoration data; and $147,660 for the Immanuel
Church inWinona.
$3,051,640 by Senate InteriorAppropriations Subcommittee Ranking
Member Larry Craig (R-Idaho): $1,575,040 for Gold Creek
Ranch; $984,400 for Idaho’s strategic plan for managing noxious
weeds; $295,320 for the Chesterfield Schoolhouse; and $196,880
for theWilson Theatre in Rupert. According to Idaho Public
Television, “In 1998 the citizens of Rupert listed as their top priority
the restoring of theWilson building. ‘We have set a tentative date
of April 2006, which is the Centennial of the founding of the city
of Rupert,’ says Earl Corless, a member of the board of directors
overseeing construction. ‘We would love to have it finished and
opened by then.’ By January of 2005, the town folks had raised a
million dollars. They need a million and a half more.” Just not
from their own pockets.
$2,362,560 for six projects by Senate appropriator Richard Durbin
(D-Ill.), including: $836,740 for land acquisition at Shawnee
National Forest; $344,540 for City of Chicago GreenStreets Tree
Planting Program (according to Sen. Durbin’s website, “The
GreenStreets program focuses on improving the quality of urban
life through tree planting and care, recycling and open space
revitalization. This fifteen year old initiative serves as a successful
model of how an investment in urban natural resources conservation
can restore deteriorated neighborhoods and enhance public open
space.”); and $295,320 for Knox College in Galesburg. Home of
the Lincoln-Douglas debates, Knox attracts a large group of
politicians including former Attorney General John Ashcroft, and
former Secretary of State Madeline Albright. A college of only
1,300 undergraduates, Knox has a $66.2 million endowment, in
addition to an annual tuition bill of nearly $30,000.
$1,698,090 by House InteriorAppropriations Subcommittee Ranking
Member Todd Tiahrt (R-Kan.): $1,181,280 for the city of Sedan,
RuralWater District Number 4 Chautauqua County for water
and wastewater infrastructure; $295,320 for the Butler County
Courthouse; and $221,490 for the Brown Mansion in Coffeyville.
The mansion is believed to be a site of paranormal activity and has
recently been popular for ghost hunters looking for a scare.
$393,760 by Senate appropriator Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) and House
appropriator Tom Latham (R-Iowa) for the City National Bank
Building. The privately-owned building was designed by Frank
LloydWright and is currently undergoing renovations for the
creation of a hotel consisting of 26 guest rooms.
$246,100 by Senate Interior Appropriations Subcommittee member
Tim Johnson (D-S.D.) for the Grand Opera House in Dell Rapids.
In 2006, the Argus Leader in Sioux Falls noted that after an upcoming
fundraiser, the building was going to be renovated to be a bar and
restaurant.
$246,100 by Sens. Joe Biden (D-Del.) and Thomas Carper (D-Del.)
for the Grand Opera House inWilmington. On June 25, 2007, the
Opera House announced its 2007-2008 season, featuring performances
from artists such as comedian Lewis Black and rock and roll
legends David Crosby and Graham Nash. Ticket prices, not tax
dollars, should be raised to pay for additional work on the facility.
$246,100 by Senate Interior Appropriations Subcommittee Ranking
Member Larry Craig (R-Idaho), Sen. Mike Crapo (R-Idaho),
and House appropriator Mike Simpson (R-Idaho) for the Idaho
sage grouse. According to a February 26, 2008 Associated Press
report, “Federal officials will again start gathering information to
help determine whether the sage grouse should receive full or
partial protection under the Endangered Species Act. The U.S.
Fish andWildlife Service announced the new review Tuesday, two
months after a federal judge in Idaho condemned the agency for
botching its initial study.”
$196,880 by House Interior Appropriations Subcommittee member
John Doolittle (R-Calif.) for the Oroville Historic State Theater.
According to the theater’s website, “The Historic State Theater of
Oroville is located at 1489 Myers Street, in Downtown Historical
Oroville, and is available for Plays, Bands, Movies, Fashion
Shows, Musicals, and even Pageants and Meetings.” Along with
your tax dollars.
$172,270 by Rep. JerryWeller (R-Ill.) for the Scottish Rite Temple
in Bloomington. The Temple was originally constructed in 1921 as
a ballroom and theatre. However, in 2000, it was in need of
preservative construction; as a result the City Council of Bloomington
approved a ¼-cent sales tax increase to fund the project. This sales
tax increase was extended in 2003 until 2025 to ensure funding
(apparently not sufficient) for the Temple.
$147,660 by House appropriator Ben Chandler (D-Ky.) for the
restoration of Merchant’s Row, a surviving nineteenth century
town adjacent to the Perryville Battlefield. Sites included in the
preservation project are a mill, a building referred to as “the Opera
House” (which never housed an opera), several homes, and a cave.
$98,440 by House appropriator Chaka Fattah (D-Pa.) and Rep.
Robert Brady (D-Pa.) for the Philadelphia Art Museum. At the end
of 2004 (the latest available), the Philadelphia Art Museum had net
assets in excess of $300 million.
$98,440 by House appropriator Chet Edwards (D-Texas) for the
Granbury Historic Opera House Theater. Shows slated for 2008
include Annie Get your Gun and The Music Man. Trouble, oh we
got trouble, right here in River City! With a capital “T” That
rhymes with “P” And that stands for Pork.
$98,440 by House appropriator Peter Visclosky (D-Ind.) for St.
Joseph’s College Theatre renovation in Rensselaer. One of the
theatre’s fundraising campaigns is “Name a seat,” in which different
contribution levels have different naming potentials. For example,
$15,000 gets your name on one of four entrances/aisles. For
$100,000 you get a stage named after you. The main stage should
be named “Porky.”

 

VIII. LABOR, HEALTH AND HUMAN
SERVICES, AND EDUCATION (LABOR/HHS)
 
    The fiscal year 2008 Labor/HHS Appropriations Act had more
projects but less spending than in fiscal year 2006, the last year
such a bill was passed by Congress. In fiscal year 2006, the thenchairman
of the Senate Labor/HHS Appropriations Subcommittee,
Arlen Specter (R-Pa.) told his colleagues there would not be any
earmarks in the bill. Nonetheless, CAGW uncovered 51 earmarks
worth $1.8 billion. In fiscal year 2008, Sen. Specter showed no
restraint whatsoever in regard to his earmarks, bringing home 116
projects, or 302 percent greater than the next largest amount (35)
by an individual lawmaker. His bounty helped increase the number
of projects by 4,300 percent, from 51 in fiscal year 2006 to 2,244 in
fiscal year 2008, while the cost decreased 40.1 percent, from $1.8
billion to $1 billion.
$93,416,000 for 35 projects by Senate appropriator Ted Stevens
(R-Alaska), including: $33,907,000 for the Alaska Native
Educational Equity Education Act; $6,875,000 for the Denali
Commission for job training activities under the Denali Commission
Act of 1998; $243,000 for the Alaska Native Heritage Center in
Anchorage for a partnership with Koahnic Broadcasting for a
Native Values project; $243,000 for a marine ecosystem education
program at the Alaska Sealife Center in Seward; and $243,000 for
the Fairbanks North Star Borough School District to expand the
PLATO learning program.
$42,672,000 for 25 projects by Senate Appropriations Committee
Ranking Member Thad Cochran (R-Miss.), including: $4,875,000
for the University of Mississippi for Phase II of the National Center
for Natural Products Research; $487,000 for workforce training in
Marine Composite at the University of Southern Mississippi in
Hattiesburg; $975,000 for Mississippi State University for digital
conversion at theWise Center-Broadcast Facility; and $195,000 for
an international study abroad program at Tougaloo College, which
has an endowment of $4.7 million.
$40,430,050 for 44 projects by Senate Labor/HHS Appropriations
Subcommittee Chairman Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), including:
$6,337,000 for two earmarks for the Iowa Department of Education
to continue the Harkin Grant Program; $1,500,000 for the AFLCIOWorking
for America Institute (dedicated to creating jobs and
strengthening communities); $731,000 for the Presidential Timeline
Project at the Lyndon Baines Johnson Foundation in Austin
(which provides digitized information from presidential libraries);
$390,000 for the support of the residency program at Cedar Rapids
Symphony Orchestra; $316,000 for a best practices initiative on
lower back pain at Palmer College of Chiropractice in Davenport
(giving taxpayers a big pain just below the back); $146,000 for the
Italian-American Cultural Center of Iowa in DesMoines for exhibits,
multimedia collections, and displays; and $97,000 for Iowa Games
in Ames to continue the Lighten Up Iowa Program, which instructs
individuals on how to lead a healthy lifestyle.
Sen. Harkin has long been a determined crusader for pork. In a
November 25, 2006 New York Times article, he claimed, “I happen
to be a supporter of earmarks, unabashedly. But I don’t call them
earmarks. It is ‘Congressional directed spending.’” This proclamation
earned Sen. Harkin CAGW’s Porker of the Month award for
December, 2006.
$13,419,000 for 116 projects by Senate Labor/HHS Appropriations
Subcommittee Ranking Member Arlen Specter (R-Pa.), including:
$853,000 for 25 projects for organizations in Pennsylvania for
abstinence education and related services; $87,000 for job training
programs atWomenWork! in Pittsburgh; $87,000 for a supercomputing
facility at Duquesne University of the Holy Spirit in Pittsburgh;
$87,000 for a fuel-cell coalmine vehicle demonstration project at
United MineWorkers of America in Fairfax, Virginia; and $73,000
for a truancy reduction initiative at Community Empowerment
Association, Inc., in Pittsburgh.
$9,089,000 by Senate Labor/HHS Appropriations Subcommittee
member Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) and Rep. Jo Bonner (R-Ala.) for
construction, renovation, and equipment at the University ofAlabama
in Tuscaloosa. A press release appearing on Sen. Shelby’s website
on June 21, 2007 specified that a “70,000 square foot interdisciplinary
health services building” would be constructed at his alma mater
using Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA)
money. A 2005 ExpectMore.gov assessment of HRSA earmarks
found that they “are not subject to a competitive or merit-based
process to ensure higher priorities are funded first” and “divert
people and associated financial resources from HRSA's core mission
activities.” While this project earned Sen. Shelby CAGW’s Porker
of the Month award for October, 2007, taxpayers can hope that
Rep. Bonner, the newest member of the House Appropriations
Committee, can avoid having his name adorn a similar award in

    $341,000 by Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.) andthe future.

$8,012,000 for 39 projects for museums, including:
Rep. Jim Marshall (D-Ga.) for educational programs at the Museum of Aviation
Foundation inWarner Robins.
    $292,000 by Senate Labor/HHS Appropriations Subcommittee
Chairman Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) for exhibits, education programs,
community outreach, and/or operations at the Figge Foundation.
The V.O. Figge and Elizabeth Kahl Figge Charitable Foundation
contributed $13 million of the $46.9 million necessary to create the
privately run FiggeArt Museum. The rest was received from private
donors; Vision Iowa, a state program that funds recreational, cultural,
educational, or entertainment facilities; and River Renaissance, a
redevelopment program in Davenport, the location of the museum.
After receiving funding from private interests as well as from city
and state governments, the museum was ultimately reliant on pork
as well. The Figge Foundation should have completed this process
without involving federal taxpayers.
    $206,000 by Senate appropriator Robert Bennett (R-Utah) for
the Museum of Utah Art & History in Salt Lake City to improve
technology and exhibit preparation.
    $146,000 by Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) for exhibits
and educational programs at the College Park Aviation Museum.
$126,000 by House Labor/HHS Appropriations Subcommittee
member Ralph Regula (R-Ohio) and Sen. George Voinovich
(R-Ohio) for the Bibliographical Society of America in New York
for the First Ladies Museum in Canton and for the FirstWhite
House Library Catalogue. The museum was founded by Rep.
Regula’s wife, Mary Regula, while his daughter, Martha Regula, is
the director.
    $82,000 by Senate appropriator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Sen.
Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), and Rep. DianeWatson (D-Calif.) for
education and outreach at the LosAngeles Craft and FolkArtMuseum.
    $1,950,000 by Rep. Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) for a library and
archives at the Charles B. Rangel Center for Public Service at The
City College of New York. This “Monument to Me” has caused
some problems for the 19-term representative. The project was
challenged on the House floor on July 19, 2007 by second-term
Rep. John Campbell (R-Calif.), who said, “You don’t agree with
me or see any problem with us, as members, sending taxpayer
funds in the creation of things named after ourselves while we’re
still here?” Rep. Rangel responded, “I would have a problem if
you did it, because I don't think that you've been around long
enough that having your name on something to inspire a building
like this in a school.” Ego and taxpayer dollars clearly do not mix.
    $438,000 by House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) for
education activities at the In Tune Foundation Group. According
to a December 10, 2007 Washington Post article, the director, other
current and former employees of In Tune, and their families have
donated at least $31,000 to Rep. Hoyer’s political action committee
from 2004 to 2006. In the same article, Rep. Hoyer stated, “If you
support something…either through legislative language or verbal
support or appropriated dollars, what happens is the proponents of
those objectives wind up saying they want to support you.” He
added, “Sometimes it's a question of which is the chicken and
which is the egg.” Sometimes you can be both.
    $390,000 by Sens. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) and Charles Schumer
(D-N.Y.), and Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) for Jazz at Lincoln
Center in New York. The center’s website states: “Jazz – we play
it, we teach it, we write it, we dance it, we sing it, we present it, we
photograph it, we film it, we produce it, we archive it, we record it,
we broadcast it, we commission it, we celebrate it, we love it, we
share it.” Perhaps they should pay for it, too.

 

IX. LEGISLATIVE BRANCH
 
    Earmarks in the Legislative Branch Appropriations Act do not tend
to make headline news. But, there is still no bill too big or too
small for appropriators to insert at least a few morsels of pork.
The number of projects decreased by 71 percent, from 14 in fiscal
year 2006 to 4 in fiscal year 2008. The amount of pork dropped by
98 percent, from $19.8 million in fiscal year 2006 to $400,000 in
fiscal year 2008.
$150,000 by Senate Legislative BranchAppropriations Subcommittee
member Richard Durbin (D-Ill.), House Legislative Branch
Appropriations Subcommittee member Ray LaHood (R-Ill.), and
House appropriator Jesse Jackson, Jr. (D-Ill.) for theAbraham Lincoln
Bicentennial Commission, which seeks to inspire Lincoln observances
until his bicentennial birthday in 2009. In Lincoln’s Gettysburg
Address, he said “all men are created equal.” When it comes to
earmarks, appropriators are not equal to other members of Congress.
Since 2001, $2.5 million in pork has been spent at the federal level
for Lincoln’s birthday celebration. In addition, eight states have
created commissions honoring the former president with countless
millions in state tax dollars.
    $125,000 by Senate Appropriations Committee Ranking Member
Thad Cochran (R-Miss.) and House appropriator RogerWicker
(R-Miss.) for the University of Mississippi music archives.

 

X. MILITARY CONSTRUCTION
 
    While funding for the war on terrorism remains a priority, so too
does Congress’s penchant for pork. The fiscal year 2008 Military
Construction, Department of Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies
Appropriations Act saw an increase of 32.6 percent in projects,
from 144 in fiscal year 2006 to 191 in fiscal year 2008, while dollar
amounts increased 13.1 percent, from $1 billion in fiscal year 2006
to $1.2 billion in fiscal year 2008.
$36,900,000 for four projects funding chapels, including:
    $11,600,000 by Rep. Nancy Boyda (D-Kan.) for phase I of the
chapel complex at Fort Leavenworth; $10,400,000 by Rep. Ike
Skelton (D-Mo.) for a chapel at Fort LeonardWood; $9,000,000 by
Senate Military ConstructionAppropriations Subcommittee member
Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), House appropriator ZachWamp
(R-Tenn.), Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), Rep. John Tanner
(D-Tenn.), and Rep. EdwardWhitfield (R-Ky.) for a chapel center
at Fort Campbell; and $5,900,000 by Rep. Randy Forbes (R-Va.)
for a unit chapel at Fort Lee.
$6,700,000 for two projects funding fitness centers:
    $5,800,000 by Rep. Mike Conaway (R-Texas) for an addition to a fitness center at
Goodfellow Air Force Base and $900,000 by House Military Construction
Appropriations Subcommittee member Patrick Kennedy
(D-R.I.) for a fitness center at Naval Station Newport.
$5,200,000 by House appropriator Ciro Rodriguez (D-Calif.) for a
student activity center and library at Laughlin Air Force Base.
$4,800,000 by House Appropriations Committee Ranking
Member Jerry Lewis (R-Calif.) for air conditioning at Vista Del
Sol, Twentynine Palms.
$1,500,000 by Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) for a dining facility at
Camp Rudder.
$750,000 by Senate Military Construction Appropriations
Subcommittee member Jack Reed (D-R.I.) for a bachelor quarters
addition at Naval Station Newport. According to its website,
Newport’s Bachelor Housing is a “Zumwalt Award winning 5-star
facility with a state-of-the-art waterfront Conference Center.” In
December, 2005 the facility received the Performance Plus Gold
Pineapple Achievement Award for excellence in training and guest
satisfaction from the American Hotel and Lodging Association
Educational Institute.

 

XI. STATE AND FOREIGN OPERATIONS
 
    Although the House and Senate certified this section of the
Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2008 to be “earmark free,” there
are 10 earmarks worth $76.3 million lurking in the report. State
and Foreign Operations Appropriations pork spending decreased by
29 percent, from $107.7 million in fiscal year 2006 to $76.3 million
in fiscal year 2008. The number of projects decreased by 37.5 percent,
from 16 in fiscal year 2006 to 10 in fiscal year 2008.
$16,700,000 added by the Senate for the International Boundary
and Water Commission (IBWC). The IBWC’s mission is “to provide
binational solutions to issues that arise during the application of
United States-Mexico treaties regarding boundary demarcation,
national ownership of waters, sanitation, water quality, and flood
control in the border region.” One particular project, a proposed
sewage treatment plant in Tijuana, raises questions about the
IBWC’s effectiveness. According to an op-ed in The San Diego
Union Tribune on February 14, 2007, “Formed in 1944, the IBWC
in 1999 built a treatment plant in San Ysidro. But it was late and
over-budget, and its discharge still violated the CleanWater Act.
This created an opening for Bajagua, a group of North County
investors with a bold proposal to build a larger, better and cheaper
plant in Tijuana. The IBWC quickly rejected the idea, because the
agency wanted more money from Congress to upgrade its new plant.”
    $14,878,000 added by the House for the International Fund for
Ireland (IFI). IFI, established in 1986, is an organization whose
objectives are to promote economic and social advance and to
encourage contact, dialogue and reconciliation between nationalists
and unionists throughout Ireland. Despite the fact that peace has
broken out in Ireland and the Irish economy is the strongest in
Europe, U.S. taxpayers continue to fund SesameWorkshop, a
shorter Northern Ireland version of Sesame Street; Ben & Jerry’s; a
“conference to highlight development opportunities for chefs;” and
two three-star hotels, one of which is no longer in business.
CAGW has identified $249.6 million for this project since 1995.
$3,000,000 added by the Senate for the Kimberly Process. According
to the Global Policy Forum (GPF), the Kimberly Process was initiated
in 2000 to set up “an internationally recognized certification system
for rough diamonds and establishing national import/export standards.
In November 2002, 52 governments ratified and adopted the
Kimberly Process Certification Scheme, which was fully implemented
in August 2003.” The GPF called the system “flawed from the
beginning ” because it is voluntary and self-regulated. Both the
Word Diamond Council and governments that signed on to the
certification process have failed to monitor and regulate the diamond
trade, according to the GPF.

 

XII. TRANSPORTATION/HOUSING AND
URBAN DEVELOPMENT (THUD)
 
    The fiscal year 2008 THUD Appropriations Act saw a 56 percent
decrease in dollar amounts, from $3.6 billion in fiscal year 2006 to
$1.6 billion in fiscal year 2008, while projects decreased by 25
percent, from 2,707 in fiscal year 2006 to 2,031 in fiscal year
2008. Despite this progress, all earmarks adversely impact an
agency’s ability to carry out its mission. A September 7, 2007 report
by the U.S. Department of Transportation Inspector General that
studied the earmarks in the fiscal year 2006 Transportation
Appropriations Act stated, “Many earmarked projects considered
by the agencies as low priority are being funded over higher priority,
non-earmarked projects.” The report continued, “Funding these
new low priority projects in FY 2006 added to the already substantial
backlog of replacement projects from earmarks in prior fiscal
years and caused FAA [Federal Aviation Administration] to delay
the planning of its higher priority replacement projects by at least
3 years.”
$37,681,000 for 23 projects by Senate Appropriations Committee
Ranking Member Thad Cochran (R-Miss.), including: $2,940,000
for bus and bus facilities at the Coast Transit Authority; $2,940,000
for expansion of a section of Highway 9 to four lanes; $1,470,000
for the Statesman Boulevard and Trail; $196,000 for the Southern
Cultural Heritage Foundation in Vicksburg for renovation of the
Southern Cultural Heritage Center Auditorium; $196,000 for
construction of a multipurpose facility in Marietta; and $196,000
for the Taylor Hall Renovation Project in the city of Grenada.
$33,005,420 for 35 projects by Senate appropriator Christopher
“Kit” Bond (R-Mo.), including: $1,470,000 for statewide bus and
bus facilities; $551,250 for the Heart of America Bicycle/Pedestrian
Bridge; $367,500 for improvements to Downtown Square Street in
Grant City; $367,500 for redevelopment of the 11th and Grand
neighborhood in Kansas City; and $183,750 for restoration of the
Poplar Bluff Historic Depot.
$18,071,200 for 17 projects by House appropriator John Olver
(D-Mass.), including: $5,880,000 for development and construction
of the MBTA Fitchburg to Boston Rail Corridor Project;
$1,470,000 for downtown streetscape in Pittsfield; $784,000 for
the Franklin Regional Transit Center; $735,000 for MART bus and
commuter facilities; $269,500 for the Barrington Stage Company
for the renovation and buildout of the Berkshire Music Hall and
Octagon House in Pittsfield; and $196,000 for the Massachusetts
Landscape Connectivity Study.
$5,735,940 for 29 projects for museums, including:
    $490,000 by House THUD Appropriations Subcommittee member
Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-Calif.) for construction and buildout of
the Los Angeles County Fire Museum in Bellflower.
    $196,000 by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) for the
city of Las Vegas to complete renovation and transformation of the
historic downtown Post Office to a museum on local history.
    $147,000 by Rep. Jim Matheson (D-Utah) for theWestern Mining
and Railroad Museum in Helper for construction and renovation of
an addition to the museum to improve accessibility.
    $98,000 by Rep. Ralph Hall (R-Texas) for construction of a
memorial building at the Audie Murphy/American Cotton Museum
in Greenville.
    $49,000 by Rep. Michael Ferguson (R-N.J.) forWoodbridge
Township for construction of aWoodbridge Historical Museum.
    $2,450,000 by House appropriator Hal Rogers (R-Ky.) for two
earmarks for the construction of Interstate 66 in Kentucky. In the
early 1990s, I-66 was conceived as a coast-to-coast highway.
However, the 1994 Transamerica Transportation Corridor Feasibility
Study found that it was not worth the cost. While most states
abandoned the project, Rep. Rogers has not been deterred from his
mission of building this boondoggle. Of the entire I-66 project in
Kentucky, only two short sections that are 120 miles apart have
reached the planning stage. Those portions, approximately 61
miles total in length, are expected to cost $3.5 billion. Government
officials cannot say how or if the entire project will be funded.
    $686,000 by House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee
Chairman Jim Oberstar (D-Minn.) for the Cambridge-Isanti
Bike/Walk Trail. After Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) unsuccessfully
attempted in September, 2007 to pass a moratorium on earmarks in
the wake of the 35Wbridge collapse in Minneapolis, Chairman
Oberstar defended the Isanti Trail, saying “Eliminating important
projects that promote tourism and recreational travel will not make
up for years of underinvestment in our nation's infrastructure, it
will just slow down other segments of the economy.” Of the
$76,841,800 in pork Minnesota received in the fiscal 2008 THUD
bill, $57,085,000, or 74.3 percent, was added by Chairman Oberstar.
    $490,000 by Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) and House appropriator
John Carter (R-Texas) for lane expansion of RM 1431 in the city of
Cedar Park, Texas. Speaking of this project, Rep. Carter said, “I’m
very proud of all of the earmarks that we do… It’s the ones that
people use to line their own pockets or other people’s pockets that
are bad.”
    $328,300 by Sens. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) and Jon Tester (D-Mont.)
for the Big Sky Economic DevelopmentAuthority, for historic
preservation of the Cobb Field facility in Billings. Home to the
Minor League Billings Mustangs, Cobb Field was built in 1948
and is currently undergoing modernization, including a new scoreboard
– all paid for by taxpayers. A September, 2006 article in
Satisfaction Magazine noted that owning a Minor League Baseball
team can be quite profitable: “But a well-run baseball operation
can turn a net profit of 5 percent to 10 percent a year, according to
interviews with team owners and consultants. Then there is the
equity play: Minor league teams have been appreciating in value
by 3 percent to 5 percent annually in the past decade, with some
instances – albeit rare ones – of owners selling for 10 times their
original investment after holding the team for just five years.”
According to the Mustangs’website, 95,309 people attended a
game at Cobb Field in 2007. An increase of $3.45 per ticket would
have removed the burden to the taxpayers.
    $295,470 by Senate appropriator Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.) and Sen.
Kent Conrad (D-N.D.) for renovations to the International Peace
Garden in Dunseith. Spanning the border of North Dakota and
Manitoba, the International Peace Garden boasts 150,000 flowers,
terraced walkways, and the 120-foot Peace Tower. In September
2007, Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) offered an amendment to eliminate
this earmark from the Senate version of the transportation bill.
Sen. Coburn argued the money would be better spent on road repairs,
calling it “morally wrong” to spend money on wasteful projects
while citizens are dying on the nation’s roads. Unfortunately, the
amendment failed by a vote of 32-63.
    $245,000 by Senate appropriator Patty Murray (D-Wash.), Sen.
Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), and Rep. Doc Hastings (R-Wash.) for
construction of theWalter CloreWine and Culinary Center in
Prosser,Washington. According to its website, the Culinary Center’s
purpose is to educate and promote the areas of viticulture, enology
and culinary practices, showcase the quality ofWashington’s wine
industry, and increase the state’s tourism industry. The website also
states that wine inWashington is a $3 billion industry. Taxpayers
should not be soaked for a new wine center.
    $147,000 by Rep.Walter Jones, Jr. (R-N.C.) for completion of
construction of the Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum in Hatteras.
The Graveyard of theAtlantic documents the plethora of shipwrecks
off the coast of North Carolina’s Outer Banks. This Titanic waste
of booty is a fishy way to keep a sinking economy afloat.
$98,000 by Rep. John McHugh (R-N.Y.) for renovations to the
Wakely Lodge Resort, the site of a nine-hole public golf course in
Indian Lake. The $19 greens fee charged atWakely Lodge Golf
Course is apparently not enough to cover renovations to the lodge.
    $98,000 by House appropriator Virgil Goode (R-Va.) to develop a
walking tour of Boydton. The town has a population of 474, and
covers .82 square miles. That’s a lot of money for a short walk.
$49,000 by Rep. Howard “Buck”McKeon (R-Calif.) for construction
of a National Mule and Packers Museum in Bishop. Defending his
earmark, Rep. McKeon stated, “One thing we forget is the people
in Bishop pay taxes…they have gotten very little back from the
federal government.” There are 3,575 people in Bishop. If they
each pay just $13.71 to a local museum fund, all of the otherAmericans
who pay taxes would not be forced to support a museum few are
likely to visit.

 

This booklet was written by David E. Williams, vice president,
policy, and Sean Kennedy, research associate. It was edited by
Thomas A. Schatz, president.

 

CITIZENS AGAINST GOVERNMENT WASTE PRESENTS
PIG BOOK “OINKERS” OF 2008
Recognizing Dogged Perseverance in the Mad Pursuit of Pork

 

The French Kiss Off Award
to Representative Mike Thompson (D-Calif.) for $211,509 in olive fruit fly
research in Paris, France.
The Taxpayers Get Teed Off Award
to House MajorityWhip James Clyburn (D-S.C.) for $3 million for
The First Tee in the defense appropriations bill.
The Cold Hard Cash Award
to Senator Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) for $165.7 million in defense pork.
The Tax Dollars on Drugs Award
to Representative John Murtha (D-Pa.) for $23 million for the
National Drug Intelligence Center.
The Pantheon of Pork Award
to Senator Robert Byrd (D-W.Va.) for $386 million in pork.
The Narcissist Award
to Representative Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) for $1,950,000 for the
Charles B. Rangel Center for Public Service.
The Pig in Sheep’s Clothing Award
to Montana Senators Max Baucus (D) and Jon Tester (D)
for $148,950 for the Montana Sheep Institute.
The Unidentified Fiscal Object Award
to Representative Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.)
for $1.6 million for the Allen Telescope Array.
The Money Doesn’t Grow on Trees Award
to Senator Richard Durbin (D-Ill.) for $344,540
for the city of Chicago GreenStreets Tree Planting Program.
The Porky and Bess Award
for $7.9 million for 36 theaters in 21 states.
The Pacific Fleeced Award
to Senator Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii) for $173.2 million in defense pork.
The Taxpayers Get Steamed Award
to Maine Senators Susan Collins (R) and Olympia Snowe (R), and
Rep. Thomas Allen (D-Maine) for $188,000 for the Lobster Institute.
This Pork Was Made for Walking Award
to Representative Virgil Goode (R-Va.) for $98,000 to develop a
walking tour of Boydton, Virginia.
The Return to Sender Award
to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) for $196,000 for the renovation
and transformation of the historic downtown Post Office in Las Vegas.

 

Pork Per Capita by State
(National Average: $33.77 Per Person)
2008     State                     2008 Pork         Population     Pork/Capita     2006      Change
Rank                                                                                                   Rank                    

1          Alaska                  $379,699,715     683,478         $555.54             1            0
2          Hawaii                   $283,149,151     1,283,388      $220.63             2            0
3          North Dakota         $132,883,420     639,715         $207.72             5            2
4          West Virginia         $325,799,541     1,812,035     $179.80              4            0
5         Mississippi             $449,883,378     2,918,785     $154.13              6            1
6         Vermont                 $70,631,915       621,254        $113.69            12             6
7         South Dakota         $89,241,281       796,214         $112.08            10            3
8         New Mexico           $205,220,434     1,969,915      $104.18             9              1
9         Montana                 $86,749,151      957,861         $90.57               7             -2

10       District of Columbia $46,126,719       588,292         $78.41              3            -7
11       Arkansas                $204,151,772     2,834,797      $72.02              36            25
12       Louisiana                $291,193,790     4,293,204      $67.83              19             7
13       Rhode Island           $70,848,807       1,057,832      $66.98              14             1
14       Delaware                 $55,605,307       864,764         $64.30              24           10
15       Nevada                    $158,779,895     2,565,382      $61.89               8             -7
16       Iowa                        $184,625,783     2,988,046      $61.79              37            21
17       Alabama                  $280,071,372     4,627,851      $60.52              15            -2
18       Kentucky                 $237,504,148     4,241,474      $56.00              16            -2
19       Kansas                    $143,744,440     2,775,997      $51.78              39           20
20       Idaho                       $68,026,924       1,499,402      $45.37              13            -7
21       Utah                        $117,671,306     2,645,330      $44.48              18             -3
22       Maryland                  $240,356,990     5,618,344      $42.78             22             0
23       Virginia                    $326,488,200     7,712,091      $42.33              32             9
24       Missouri                  $244,170,488     5,878,415      $41.54              25              1
25       Washington             $268,294,892     6,468,424      $41.48              17             -8
26       Minnesota               $199,847,089     5,197,621      $38.45              38             12
27       Connecticut             $134,387,293     3,502,309      $38.37              35              8
28       New Hampshire       $42,159,826       1,315,828       $32.04             11             -17
29       Wisconsin               $174,816,697     5,601,640      $31.21              41             12
30       Nebraska                $54,252,725       1,774,571      $30.57              26              -4
31       Massachusetts        $186,992,813     6,449,755      $28.99              46              15
32       Wyoming                $14,294,522       522,830         $27.34              23               -9
33       Tennessee              $167,805,330     6,156,719       $27.26              34               1
34       Oklahoma               $98,306,642      3,617,316        $27.18              48             14
35       Pennsylvania          $332,534,975     12,432,792      $26.75              40               5
36       Illinois                    $327,333,197     12,852,548      $25.47              31              -5
37       South Carolina        $111,630,689     4,407,709       $25.33             42               5
38       Indiana                   $158,296,422     6,345,289       $24.95             49               11
39       North Carolina         $216,408,374     9,061,032       $23.88             33               -6
40       Texas                     $558,967,383     23,904,380     $23.38             47                7
41       Maine                     $29,521,553       1,317,207      $22.41             28               -13
42       Florida                    $382,964,232     18,251,243     $20.98             50                 8
43       New Jersey             $180,531,502     8,685,920       $20.78             30               -13
44       Georgia                  $196,628,305      9,544,750       $20.60             51               7
45       Oregon                   $75,943,902       3,747,455       $20.27             29               -16
46       Michigan                $196,478,810     10,071,822      $19.51             45                -1
47       Colorado                 $94,039,035       4,861,515       $19.34             21               -26
48       Ohio                      $211,698,486     11,466,917      $18.46             44                 -4
49       California                $666,398,576     36,553,215      $18.23            43                 -6
50       New York               $323,390,913     19,297,729      $16.76             27               -23
51       Arizona                  $89,790,175       6,338,755        $14.17            20                -31
TOTAL*                           $10,186,338,285 301,621,157     $33.77
* This figure differs from the $17.2 billion total for pork. Pork projects earmarked for multiple states or
projects that cannot be attributed to a specific state are not included in the pork per capita calculations.

 

Senate List by Dollar Amount | Alphabetical
House List by Dollar Amount | Alphabetical

1301 Connecticut Avenue, N.W.
Suite 400
Washington, D.C. 20036
www.cagw.org
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Additionally, we wanted to add the following for you to consider how broken Washington really is. Its your fault – you Americans who put these people in office or don't vote at all!

Military Losses, 1980 thru 2006

Whatever your politics, however you lean, however you feel about the
current administration, this report should open some eyes.

Military losses, 1980 through 2006

E-mail on military deaths is shaky on facts

By Chuck Vinch – Staff writer ArmyTimes.com
Posted : Thursday Mar 27, 2008 7:50:12 EDT

     A spam e-mail making the rounds in the military community serves as a reminder that facts can be flexible when they are launched anonymously into the vast void of cyberspace.

    The e-mail, entitled, “Some very interesting statistics: Military losses, 1980 through 2006,” states that more U.S. service members died on active duty during the eight years of the Clinton administration, when there were no major U.S. military conflicts, than in the first six years of the George W. Bush administration, during which the military was fighting two large-scale wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

    The e-mail offers year-by-year U.S. military death totals from all causes — operations, illness, accidents, suicides, etc. — from 1980 through 2006. The data supposedly were taken from a periodically updated Congressional Research Service report on the subject, which in turn is based on statistics compiled by the Pentagon’s Defense Manpower and Data Center.

    There’s just one problem: The figures listed in the email are wrong. They vary markedly from the figures published in the cited CRS source document. According to the e-mail, slightly more than 14,000 U.S. active-duty military deaths occurred from 1993 to 2000 during the eight years of the Clinton administration, compared to 7,932 deaths from 2001 through 2006 under President Bush.

    “The loss from the two latest conflicts in the Middle East are LESS than the loss of military personnel during Bill Clinton’s presidency, when America wasn't even involved in a war,” states the e-mail, whose original author is, of course, forever lost to the electrons. But some simple math using the figures listed on page 7 of the CRS report reveals that the figures for several of the years under Clinton are inflated, while figures for some of the years under Bush are downplayed. In reality, according to the CRS report, 7,500 service members died on active duty in the eight years from 1993 through 2000, compared to 8,792 in the six years from 2001 through 2006.

    The Pentagon has not yet released data on total active-duty deaths for 2007, but 1,014 service members died in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan that year, and more than 100 have died in the wars so far in 2008, pushing the known total under Bush to more than 9,900. The report does not address the ratio of active-duty deaths to force size; the active-duty force shrank significantly during the drawdown of the 1990s, from more than 1.7 million in 1993 to about 1.3 million by the early years of this decade.

    The claims of this particular e-mail are easily disproved. But the online proliferation of such anonymous documents highlights a serious concern for researchers and scholars about how to separate fact from fiction within the vast quantities of raw material online — and being consumed by users who often have no easy way to gauge the reliability of the information they see. The Web site of The Sheridan Libraries, the main research facility at Johns Hopkins University, includes a lengthy “how to” guide for evaluating Internet information that underscores the difficulty. “When you use a research or academic library, the books, journals and other resources have already been evaluated by scholars, publishers and librarians,” the Web site states. “Every resource you find has been evaluated in one way or another before you ever see it.” Online, however, “none of this applies — there are no filters,” the library Web site states. “Because anyone can write a Web page, documents of the widest range of quality, written by authors of the widest range of authority, are available on an even playing field. Excellent resources reside along side the most dubious.”

    “You have to look at the source,” said John Pike, director of GlobalSecurity.org, a massive online storehouse of information about every aspect of the security world, including defense, space, intelligence, weapons of mass destruction and homeland security. Pike said he relies primarily on information from the dot-gov and dot-mil Internet domains — the official sites of the U.S. government and the Defense Department — for his Web site, “on the theory that any material from those sources has had some sort of fact-checking.” If he ventures into the dot-com realm, Pike said he generally sticks to contractor Web sites, since “presumably they know what they’re talking about when it comes to their toys.” “But sometimes we still find mistakes from those sources,” he added.

    With its bottomless pool of instantaneous information, the Internet had made many people comfortable about jettisoning their critical-thinking skills, Pike said. “These days, there is a tendency to believe anything you see online that’s reasonably well-spelled,” he said. “But you have to check your sources. You have to have a good BS detector.” A good tool for dubious readers who want to confirm their suspicions is Snopes.com, which contains a database of debunked Internet myths — many related to the military.

    A check of the CRS source document cited in the e-mail on U.S. military deaths shows that the e-mail’s author got it right for only three of the eight years of the Clinton administration. Figures for the other five years are off by a wide margin. For example, the e-mail cites 2,465 active-duty deaths in 1995; the figure in the CRS report is 1,040. For 1998, the e-mail cites 2,252 deaths; the CRS figure is 827.

    For the six years of the Bush administration, the e-mail gets none of the figures correct. Some are off only slightly — in 2001, for example, the e-mail figure is 890 deaths, the CRS figure, 891 — but other years are far off the mark. In 2005, the e-mail lists a figure of 919 deaths; the figure in the CRS report is 1,942. Similarly, the figures for 2006 are 920 in the e-mail, 1,858 in the CRS report.

    “Whatever your politics, however you lean, however you feel about the current administration, this report should open some eyes,” the e-mail declares.

Additional Reading

Defenselink, the official website for the Department of Defense, issues news releases every weekday that identify military personnel killed at

[http://www.defenselink.mil/news/].

CRS-25

CRS Report RS21578. Iraq: Summary of U.S. Casualties, by JoAnne O’Bryant.

CRS Report RS22537. Iraqi Civilian Deaths Estimates, by Hannah Fischer.

CRS Report RS22532. Iraqi Police and Security Forces Casualty Estimates, by Hannah Fischer.

CRS Report RS22452. United States Military Casualty Statistics: Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom, by Hannah Fischer.

Warfare and Armed Conflicts: A Statistical Reference to Casualty and Other Figures (Jefferson, NC, and London: McFarland & Company, Inc., 2001)

Jimmy Carter continues his betrayal of the U.S. Armed Services by consorting with our avowed enemy, Hamas.
 
I was surprised again. . .until it became clear to me that the point here is
that our mainstream media continues to spin these figures (for political gain).
Nothing more. It's all about politics and some politicians, are now famous for
turning American against American for a vote. (Consider Slick Willy and his
comments just recently made about South Carolina , Jesse Jackson, and the
'blacks' voting for the 'black' candidates); or Hillary's stump speech after her
Super Tuesday 'victory' stating that the current administration does not
'listen' to anyone and continues the war costing precious American lives. Yes, I
might even agree with her, but she should be made to acknowledge her own
husband's administration forced the military to release Osama when we
actually had him detained.

I hope that during the time between now and November, that intelligent
Americans can decipher the facts from the spin and the spinners from the
leaders; those who seek even more power from those that seek justice, the
dividers from the uniters.

Over the next months let's be good listeners (yes, Hillary we are listening)
and see and hear who tries to divide our nation; and who wants to unite our
nation. Who wants to control how our money is spent and who wants our money
spent the way we would spend it. Who seeks power and who seeks justice?

Who spins the facts and who is genuine? (These statistics are published by
Congressional Research Service, and they may be confirmed by anyone at:
http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/natsec/RL32492.pdf

 

portions of the above edited by the CftC 

 

By MICHAEL YON


April 11, 2008; Page A17


    It is said that generals always fight the last war. But when David Petraeus came to town it was senators – on both sides of the aisle – who battled over the Iraq war of 2004-2006. That war has little in common with the war we are fighting today.

    I may well have spent more time embedded with combat units in Iraq than any other journalist alive. I have seen this war – and our part in it – at its brutal worst. And I say the transformation over the last 14 months is little short of miraculous.

    The change goes far beyond the statistical decline in casualties or incidents of violence. A young Iraqi translator, wounded in battle and fearing death, asked an American commander to bury his heart in America. Iraqi special forces units took to the streets to track down terrorists who killed American soldiers. The U.S. military is the most respected institution in Iraq, and many Iraqi boys dream of becoming American soldiers. Yes, young Iraqi boys know about "GoArmy.com."

    As the outrages of Abu Ghraib faded in memory – and paled in comparison to al Qaeda's brutalities – and our soldiers under the Petraeus strategy got off their big bases and out of their tanks and deeper into the neighborhoods, American values began to win the war.

    Iraqis came to respect American soldiers as warriors who would protect them from terror gangs. But Iraqis also discovered that these great warriors are even happier helping rebuild a clinic, school or a neighborhood. They learned that the American soldier is not only the most dangerous enemy in the world, but one of the best friends a neighborhood can have.

    Some people charge that we have merely "rented" the Sunni tribesmen, the former insurgents who now fight by our side. This implies that because we pay these people, their loyalty must be for sale to the highest bidder. But as Gen. Petraeus demonstrated in Nineveh province in 2003 to 2004, many of the Iraqis who filled the ranks of the Sunni insurgency from 2003 into 2007 could have been working with us all along, had we treated them intelligently and respectfully. In Nineveh in 2003, under then Maj. Gen. Petraeus's leadership, these men – many of them veterans of the Iraqi army – played a crucial role in restoring civil order. Yet due to excessive de-Baathification and the administration's attempt to marginalize powerful tribal sheiks in Anbar and other provinces – including men even Saddam dared not ignore – we transformed potential partners into dreaded enemies in less than a year.

    Then al Qaeda in Iraq, which helped fund and tried to control the Sunni insurgency for its own ends, raped too many women and boys, cut off too many heads, and brought drugs into too many neighborhoods. By outraging the tribes, it gave birth to the Sunni "awakening." We – and Iraq – got a second chance. Powerful tribes in Anbar province cooperate with us now because they came to see al Qaeda for what it is – and to see Americans for what we truly are.

    Soldiers everywhere are paid, and good generals know it is dangerous to mess with a soldier's money. The shoeless heroes who froze at Valley Forge were paid, and when their pay did not come they threatened to leave – and some did. Soldiers have families and will not fight for a nation that allows their families to starve. But to say that the tribes who fight with us are "rented" is perhaps as vile a slander as to say that George Washington's men would have left him if the British offered a better deal.

    Equally misguided were some senators' attempts to use Gen. Petraeus's statement, that there could be no purely military solution in Iraq, to dismiss our soldiers' achievements as "merely" military. In a successful counterinsurgency it is impossible to separate military and political success. The Sunni "awakening" was not primarily a military event any more than it was "bribery." It was a political event with enormous military benefits.

    The huge drop in roadside bombings is also a political success – because the bombings were political events. It is not possible to bury a tank-busting 1,500-pound bomb in a neighborhood street without the neighbors noticing. Since the military cannot watch every road during every hour of the day (that would be a purely military solution), whether the bomb kills soldiers depends on whether the neighbors warn the soldiers or cover for the terrorists. Once they mostly stood silent; today they tend to pick up their cell phones and call the Americans. Even in big "kinetic" military operations like the taking of Baqubah in June 2007, politics was crucial. Casualties were a fraction of what we expected because, block-by-block, the citizens told our guys where to find the bad guys. I was there; I saw it.

    The Iraqi central government is unsatisfactory at best. But the grass-roots political progress of the past year has been extraordinary – and is directly measurable in the drop in casualties.

    This leads us to the most out-of-date aspect of the Senate debate: the argument about the pace of troop withdrawals. Precisely because we have made so much political progress in the past year, rather than talking about force reduction, Congress should be figuring ways and means to increase troop levels. For all our successes, we still do not have enough troops. This makes the fight longer and more lethal for the troops who are fighting. To give one example, I just returned this week from Nineveh province, where I have spent probably eight months between 2005 to 2008, and it is clear that we remain stretched very thin from the Syrian border and through Mosul. Vast swaths of Nineveh are patrolled mostly by occasional overflights.

    We know now that we can pull off a successful counterinsurgency in Iraq. We know that we are working with an increasingly willing citizenry. But counterinsurgency, like community policing, requires lots of boots on the ground. You can't do it from inside a jet or a tank.

    Over the past 15 months, we have proved that we can win this war. We stand now at the moment of truth. Victory – and a democracy in the Arab world – is within our grasp. But it could yet slip away if our leaders remain transfixed by the war we almost lost, rather than focusing on the war we are winning today.

Mr. Yon is author of the just-published "Moment of Truth in Iraq" (Richard Vigilante Books). He has been reporting from Iraq and Afghanistan since December 2004.