There is NO mercury in incandescent bulbs... But the coal used to generate electricity does contain mercury.
I have seen numerous people make the untrue statement that incandescent bulbs contain mercury. They do not. However about 50% of our power still comes from coal - and that does contain mercury (and it is released when power is generated...) But it is not in the bulbs themselves.
Think of it this way - would you rather have a CFL bulb (with mercury) break in your home and be directly exposed to mercury (which is a neurotoxin), or would you rather have it exposed in the environment where it will dissipate greatly so it's concentration in any particular area is minimal? Of course the perfect thing would be a energy source that didn't release anything harmful (in particular, for this post, mercury), and halogen bulbs (think incandescent version 2.0), which saves energy, and doesn't have mercury, either.
Of course all Flourescent bulbs, including CFLs, DO HAVE mercury.
As for LED Bulbs, they don't have mercury but their quality of light is quite poor. Our eyes were designed to receive more than a very limited spectrum of light at a time (read: not natural). They are costly and not great for your eyes.
I don't understand why the government didn't give tax breaks or other incentives to adopt halogen bulbs instead. The process would support energy conservation, and allow people to use bulbs that won't catch fire, don't contain dangerous neurotoxins, and emit a higher quality of light (which will help save your eyes from extra strain).
We don't have anyone competent in the government anymore - you know - people who are willing to admit they aren't knowledgeable on a topic - and instead obtain outside input from people in that field - you know - people that know what they are doing. People that have a neutral standpoint (nothing to gain either way) but can provide the pros and cons of changes like this? I mean how hard could it be? When I don't know about something I obtain my opinions after researching both sides of an argument and I come to my own conclusions. I become more knowledgeable in the topic and can defend my opinion well because of it. Haven't we grown beyond having opinions based on either incomplete information or from what our colleagues and friends have said? From what I have seen lately, my opinion is that government officials (at least) have not - how sad!
I think it's time we get these clowns out of congress, before it is too late.