Sunday, September 27, 2015

The Export-Import Bank Gets New Life

John Boehner seems to be a very nice man, but a uniquely unproductive Speaker of the House.  Rather than risk another bruising fight with conservatives, Boehner chose to step down as Speaker of the US House of Representatives last week.

Boehner has long been a supporter of crony capitalism.  The poster child for crony capitalism is the Export-Import, which provides subsidies to a handful of big businesses to promote their export activities.  Using government to line your pockets is supposed to be something that small-government Republicans oppose.  But, generally they don't.  Republicans, just like their Democratic brethren, are only too eager to find ways to use taxpayer money to enrich their wealthy patrons.  And so, the Export-Import Bank is back on the table as one of several initiatives that Boehner has been prevented from putting forward by the conservatives in the Republican caucus.

The plan is that Boehner in his final days, free from the normal obligations of Speaker, will use his lame-duck power as Speaker to pursue the various items on Harry Reid's wishlist.  The Export-Import is the symbolic crown prince of the Harry Reid-Nancy Pelosi wish list and Boehner is determined to deliver for his friends in the Democratic party and his buddies in the crony capitalism wing of the Republican party.

So, the tears that should be shed are tears for free market capitalism.  Boehner may be a nice man, but he is no friend of free market capitalism.

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