sin taxes for health expenditure can also insulate health spending from fluctuation and competition from other national needs, particularly when government or healthcare funds are low or unstable,' said Galen Centre.
In December 2011, Senator Tom Coburn of Oklahoma suggested the extent of alternative earmarking
when he denounced the fiscal year 2012 omnibus appropriations bill:
Republicans who were disposed to criticize them as corrupt supported what has been termed an explosion of earmarking
before reversing field and banning the process.
have been used for decades, if not centuries, to make
Ken Silverstein did an excellent job of identifying the corrosive political effects of congressional earmarking
, but it would probably take another full edition of Harper's to assess fully how this greed eats away at our national prosperity.
The analysis backing up Savage's overall assessment of academic earmarking
is convincing in some respects but not in others.
The forces of modernization here developed their own forms of earmarking
- gift certificates, Christmas clubs, and money orders - to facilitate this transition.
The Washington Post reported at the end of the first session of the 103rd Congress that "earmarking
, the congressional practice of adding footnotes to spending bills to fund pet projects without public review, is half of what it was two years ago in four major appropriations bills." In the belief that public scrutiny will end the practice of earmarking
, spending-reform advocates in the Congress, like Representatives Brown and Fawell, try to force pork out of the back rooms and into the public domain through hearings and other public relations initiatives.
If he holds to that threat, the political logrolling that feeds earmarking
excesses will have to be drastically curtailed.
A case in point: The same night he was ushering through legislation that would cripple the current process for earmarking
spending, Pence told me, "We need a Contract With America Renewed," He and other House conservatives liked the idea so much they proposed a bill by that name.
has proliferated, it has become less ad hoc and more efficient; it is now an accepted Washington industry, with its own standardized rules and procedures.
Now we have James Savage's book, which might just as easily have been called Learning from Earmarking
. If earmarking
public funds for specified research projects and facilities is for many "garish, ugly, and bizarre," why is the practice so robust?