Lying about “subsidies”

I am sick of the left lying about the supposed “subsidies” being offered to the oil and gas industry. See the screed by F. Mary Lee Ortega in today’s Albuquerque Journal. The author calls these tax breaks — which are available to other businesses — a subsidy — which is factually inaccurate under the definition of a subsidy: a form of financial assistance paid to a business or economic sector. Notice the active verb “paid to.” This is very different from not collecting taxes from a business or industry which is nothing more than a tax break or tax expenditure.

She also states that “We are paying the oil companies twice – once at the pump with high gas prices and then again on tax day.” Again, “we” are not “paying.” There is no transfer of money here and New Mexico families are not “under financial attack.”

We can/should have a debate about energy and tax policies — including fundamental tax reform and whether “green energy” should be subsidized — but no progress will be made until honest language is used. Ortega is either lying or attempting to create a smokescreen to cloak her real goals which is to simply attack an industry she doesn’t like. Regardless of her goals, it is important to understand that “subsidy” involves a direct payment.