The wheedle & the damage done

In his Wall Street Journal morning editorial report email, Paul Gigot usefully summarizes the damage done in the absurdly named “Inflation Reduction Act” that the Senate is approving via the reconciliation process:

The Washington press corps prefers to cover politics over policy, so it’s mostly ignored the details in Sen. Joe Manchin’s tax-and-spending deal with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer. The Journal opinion pages have tried to fill that gaping coverage hole, and my choice for its worst three provisions are: drug price controls that will erode innovation and slow future cures; climate subsidies and language that will distort energy investment and liberate regulators to crush fossil fuels; and the tax increases on companies, including the new stock buyback levy that Sen. Kyrsten Sinema agreed to in return for altering the new book income tax that would have punished manufacturers in particular. But please don’t forget the $80 billion in new funding for 87,000 new Internal Revenue Service employees. That includes more than $45 billion for tax enforcement that Democrats claim will yield more revenue.

I trust Steve Hayward will elaborate on the language that will “liberate regulators to crush fossil fuels[.]” On the last point, regarding the IRS, Gigot cites the Journal editorial “The IRS is about to go beast mode.”

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