A while ago, James Fallows at the Atlantic Monthly asked readers to submit suggestions for "the stupidest policy ever." He rigged the deck by taking The Gulf of Tonkin resolution off the table, but the winner, by a landslide, is the blind support our "independent" politicians gave to the bio-ethanol scam. (And you're the victim.) The mag gave two of the winner's proponents, Justin Cohen and his father Reuben, special mention for their comprehensive summation of all that's wrong with bio-ethanol. "I think bi-partisan support for ethanol is more stupid [than the McCain-Clinton 'gas tax holiday' plan], because it's actually harmful and because it not only panders to the public… worse it panders to a special interest group (Midwest farmers and their regional politicians). It's harmful because: 1) it helped to catalyze higher levels of food inflation, 2) it consumes as much energy to make and distribute as it provides, 3) it deflects attention from developing/trying sound policies to enhance our energy security, 4) it didn't allow for removal of taxes on the import of truly energy efficient ethanol produced in Brazil from sugar, and 5) it's a such an extreme example of government dysfunctionality it causes people like me to become truly disillusioned with the political process."
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