First cash for clunkers – now free golf carts

In a twist that will tick-off taxpayers, the federal government’s plan to provide tax credits to buyers of electric vehicles has turned into a boon for golf cart manufactures. The IRS allows the full credit – $4,200 to $5,500 – to be applied to electric golf carts as long as they are road-worthy. Some buyers will drive carts for two years – and get paid $2,000.

Golf cart dealers are taking advantage of the the monstrous federal bureaucracies legislation. New golf carts, equipped with three point seat belts and rear-view mirrors, can easily be purchased for $8,000 and dealers are promoting the $5,500 rebate on your 2009 federal return

Taking this one step further, dealers are suggesting you can make $2,000 on the deal, after driving the cart around for more than two years for free! This is more ammunition for TEA party members and a great example of an out-of-control federal government.

From the Wall Street Journal.

In South Carolina, sales of these carts have been soaring as dealerships alert customers to Uncle Sam’s giveaway. “The Golf Cart Man” in the Villages of Lady Lake, Florida is running a banner online ad that declares: “GET A FREE GOLF CART. Or make $2,000 doing absolutely nothing!”

Golf Cart Man is referring to his offer in which you can buy the cart for $8,000, get a $5,300 tax credit off your 2009 income tax, lease it back for $100 a month for 27 months, at which point Golf Cart Man will buy back the cart for $2,000. “This means you own a free Golf Cart or made $2,000 cash doing absolutely nothing!!!” You can’t blame a guy for exploiting loopholes that Congress offers.

Can the deal be any better? For cart buyers, it really can’t get any better, but how do you feel about your tax dollars being used to provide free luxury items – golf carts – to other people. We’re not talking about tax dollars going to the poor to pay the heat bill ya know?

OK, maybe golf carts are “regular transportation vehicles” in some communities, but is the federal government going to subsidize the purchase of bicycles next? It’s not like the feds are requiring those who buy golf carts turn in their cars or anything.

Can it get more idiotic? Sure it can!

The IRS has also ruled that there’s no limit to how many electric cars an individual can buy, so some enterprising profiteers are stocking up on multiple carts while the federal credit lasts, in order to resell them at a profit later. We should note that some states, such as Oklahoma, have caught on to the giveaway and are debating whether to cancel or limit their state credits. But in Congress they’re still on the driving range.

Your federal government at work, and it’s just another symptom of the disease. Tax credits to specific groups as pay offs and a stupid go-green initiative leads to more and more of this crap.

Update: Malkin writing about this now.

Steve McGough

Steve's a part-time conservative blogger. Steve grew up in Connecticut and has lived in Washington, D.C. and the Bahamas. He resides in Connecticut, where he’s comfortable six months of the year.

1 Comment

  1. Dimsdale on October 18, 2009 at 4:07 pm

    I am holding out for the free yachts….


    Is there any doubt in anyone's mind that Obama, and, apparently, much of his staff, including the Treasury secretary, have no real background in basic economics?  Or capitalism for that matter.

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