There's an op-ed in this morning's WSJ on this subject. No doubt it has been broached before, maybe it's worth an update or 2nd look. Anyway, it seems to me we should be looking at ways to avoid paying billions to companies who already make billions unless there are sound economic reasons to do so. I'd be interested if someone can provide some insight if such reasons exist. We're talking here about grants, loans, guarantees, bailouts, tax breaks, subsides, etc., to specific industries or firms. Most of the money goes to the big guys, who can reciprocate with large campaign donations or special favors to the elected reps who make it possible. And don't tell me it's just the repubs; bullshit, it's both sides and anyone who says different is either lying or misinformed. The op-ed says that the Cato Institute did a study back in '08, and came up with approx 92 billion in FY 2006. The gov't doesn't track this data, maybe it should, but inany case I'm guessing by now the figure is probably more than twice that. Seems to me that before we start talking about raising taxes on individuals we should take a look at business taxes first. Throw 'em all out and then add in anything that really makes economic sense. Far as I'm concerned, if a business can't make it without gov't welfare in one form or another then they need to fix their business model or go out of business. This way we can lower the corp tax rate down to a level that is competitive with other ountries; right now ours is the highest in the world. Maybe this would also help the tarnished mage of both gov't and Wall Street. Couldn't hurt.