President Trump announced new tariffs on steel and aluminum coming into the United States. According to Business Insider, "Trump announced new tariffs — taxes on imports — of 25% on foreign steel and 10% on aluminum.
While a new tax on importing aluminum would have widespread economic effects, one of the those consequences would likely include an increase in the cost of producing beer — and in turn a bump in the end product price.” NOOOOOOOOOOOO!
Ok seriously, this is a problem and could have devastating effects on the economy. This isn’t the first time the Taxpayers Protection Alliance (TPA) has been critical of protectionist policies. In January, we slammed the United States Trade Representative’s decision to impose unnecessary tariffs on imported large residential washing machines and imported solar cells and modules. Imposing tariffs on solar panels and washing machines is a middle class tax increase. The stock market dove 500 points after the announcement. Clearly, we aren’t the only ones concerned about this protectionist policy.
D.C. Is Going the Wrong Way With the Streetcar
For many years, the DC Streetcar has been the White Whale that TPA has tried to kill. So, call me Ishmael.
At a cost of nearly $100 million per mile and initial building delays spanning seven years for the 2.2 mile boondoggle, the D.C. Streetcar is a sad monument to fiscal mismanagement. And, city officials haven’t figured out a way to charge riders so all of the Streetcar operations are subsidized by taxpayers. Unfortunately, it’s likely to only get worse. The District Department of Transportation is considering scrapping the existing fleet of streetcars in favor of new ones, due to problems associated with procuring replacement parts. Rather than accepting responsibility for an absurdly expensive undertaking, DC planners are doubling down on their boondoggle. New streetcar purchases will likely cost the city at least $25 million, with purchases beginning in 2020 or 2021. Enough is enough. In 2016, TPA released a report that identified more than $2 million in costs devoted to marketing, public relations and communications. More than $174,000 was spent on the D.C. Streetcar website. I can guarantee you that TPA’s website was a lot cheaper than that.Streetcars have been an utter failure across the country. The Cincinnati, Ohio streetcar has been a mess. Benita Dodd with the Georgia Public Policy Foundation has highlighted the problems with the Atlanta streetcar.
(used by permission: Taxpayer Protection Alliance)