Corporate War Profiteering

Suppose you still believed in Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy, and the Easter Bunny. And suppose that all three of them came to your house at once bearing a gift package for you wrapped in glorious golden ribbons. And suppose that in that package was all the money that you've paid in taxes for the past 15 years, being given back to you.

But, of course, it's impossible to believe in such a fantasy ... unless your name is IBM, Ford, GM, Chevron, GE, some other huge, brand-name corporation. Then, thanks to the campaign contributions you make and the lobbyists you hire, your fantasies can come true, and you'll actually see the president and the congress floating around you like a magical group of sugar plum fairies, handing out billions of dollars to you as a gift-wrapped rebate of all the corporate income taxes you've paid in the past 15 years.

General Electric, for example, gave $2 million to Bush and congressional candidates last year, and now GE will be handed $670 million in Washington's wonderfully wacky corporate giveaway. Likewise, Ford put about a million dollars into last year's elections, and this year it's getting a billion bucks from the sugar plum fairies.

These sweet dollops from the public treasury are part of Bush's "economic stimulus" package, but all they'll stimulate is more campaign cash for incumbents and more cynicism among We the people. The White House tried to rationalize the corporate welfare as job-creation money, but there's no requirement that the corporations getting the $25 billion in handouts have to create as much as a single job, and even Alan Greenspan, a loyal buddy of big business, scoffs at the idea that this cash will stimulate any job growth.

This is Jim Hightower saying ... These shameful corporations are using the terrorist attacks on America and the subsequent economic downturn as an excuse to plunder the public treasury. This isn't an economic stimulus, it's war profiteering ... and it's downright unamerican.

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