The power of III

Summum ius summa iniuria--More law, less justice

09 November 2011

Jim Demint of SC: Crony Capitalism, Christmas Trees, and the Stupidest Tax of All Time

You really can't make this up

No, it’s not a joke.  President Obama really is imposing a
 special new tax on Christmas trees.

And while the policy seems a ludicrous political misstep – 
and possibly an unconstitutional one at that – in truth, the
 Obama Christmas Tree Tax is much worse than that.

The $2 million the Obama Administration expects the tax to
 raise will not reduce the deficit or cover needed
 government services.  Instead, it will serve as a marketing
 slush fund for the Christmas tree industry.

The money will set up a brand new government agency
 called (no, seriously) the Christmas Tree Promotion Board.

  The CTPB will use the $2 million to hire a staff – most
 likely the industry lobbyists who cooked up this scheme – 
 and then run advertisements to “enhance the image of
 Christmas trees and the Christmas tree industry of the
 United States.”

Don’t the Christmas tree growers and retailers already do
 that?  Yes.  Isn’t marketing something that all companies
 should do with their profits, to grow their business and 
attract new customers?  Yes.
And while we’re asking questions, does anyone in America –
 anyone? – believe that Christmas trees have a bad image
 that needs taxpayer-subsidized improvement?

So why should the government-funded Christmas Tree
 Promotion Board tax us to fund a marketing campaign?  So
 the Christmas tree industry can pocket the $2 million they 
now won’t have to spend marketing their trees.

That’s it.  That’s the whole purpose of the Obama Christmas
 Tree Tax: to take money from hard-working families
 celebrating Christmas and give it to clever lobbyists and
 businessmen running a crony-capitalist subsidy scam.
And while this policy will, by design, help one group of
 people, it will hurt others: businesses that sell artificial
 Christmas trees, people who work at your local stores that
 sell them, and, don’t forget, the consumers who are out 15
 cents a tree.

Business groups using government connections to enrich 
themselves by hurting everyone else.  Makes you just want
 to break into “O Holy Night,” doesn’t it?

Hopefully, the Crony Capitalists in the Obama 
Administration have gone too far this time, and public 
backlash will force Congress to shut down the Christmas 
Tree Promotion Board and repeal the single stupidest tax of 
all time. I will soon offer an amendment on the Senate floor 
to do just that.

All I want for Christmas is a free market.

Amen, brother.


  1. First thing we do is change the name to Holiday Tree .....

  2. I guess its festivus for the rest of us...;-)