Monday, April 25, 2011

What You Don't Know Can Hurt You:

In his weekly address, Obama reiterated his call to "end the $4 billion in taxpayer subsidies we give to the oil and gas companies each year." Americans of all stripes recognize that tax breaks and giveaways to oil companies need to be eliminated, despite the industry propaganda that these subsidies are needed to prevent high energy prices. When asked about massive subsidies given to the oil industry, even Tea Party activists have agreed with progressives that there is a structural imbalance in the political system towards corporate power.

Many of the oil-industry subsidies come in the form of passing corporate risks onto American families: there have been no laws passed to protect our nation from oil disasters like BP's, and companies like Koch Industries enjoy the multi-billion dollar subsidy of being able to emit millions of tons of carbon pollution for free - while communities foot the bill for our increasingly dangerous climate.

Far from raising prices at the pump, eliminating these subsidies would instead reduce oil companies' outsized profits and corporate paydays. If this Congress wants to take on the pain at the pump, it will support legislation to build a national infrastructure of electric charging stations for electric vehicles, deploy 21st-century high-speed rail, and curb oil profiteering by Wall Street.

In a democracy, silence is not golden; it is condonance in the face of injustices; it is fear, where the thought of reprisal fosters control – Rodney A. Davis

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