"A new transatlantic row is unfolding after the US introduced a $14 entry fee for EU travellers, with the European Commission analysing possible retaliatory measures. ... Privately, US officials admit that promoting tourism at the expense of incoming travellers is self-contradictory, but Mr Reid managed to muscle through his proposal in return for his key support on the health care bill passed earlier this year." [EU Observer 24 September 2010 via @futureidentity]
In American politics, crazy and contradictory initiatives like this are often produced by coupling separate initiatives to gain political support. I think this probably comes under the category of "pork". See my earlier post on Pork Scratchings.