In this episode of the weekly Budget & Tax News podcast, research fellow and managing editor Jesse Hathaway is joined by Scott Lincicome, an adjunct scholar with the Cato Institute and visiting lecturer at Duke University. Hathaway and Lincicome talk about how both major political parties used to believe in free-market trade, how both parties have been hijacked by cronyist anti-trade sentiment, and what conservatives can do to make American economic policy great again.
President Barack Obama is a Cronyism Machine. No Administration in our history has done more to punish its enemies and reward its friends. In fact, while engaging in rank identity politics – another Divider-Not-Uniter moment in seven-plus years full of them – the President his own self said exactly this: “We’re gonna punish our enemies and we’re gonna reward our friends who stand with us on issues that are important to us.”
It is an incessant refrain – from Leftists and the media (please pardon the redundancy). This annoying gaggle whines and moans that the quintessential, awful faces of corporate influence over government are those of Charles and David Koch.
Political campaign years are filled with candidates’ promises to solve people’s problems. Government policies will “create jobs,” will reduce or even block the “unfair” competition of market rivals in foreign lands, will restore or create prosperity for all, and will assure “fairness” for everyone, even if it means imposing regulatory or special tax burdens on some to guarantee politically provided privileges and benefits for others who are deemed “deserving.”
Government by ideological fantasy – at the expense of actual facts – is a terrible idea. So too is government of, by and for the donors. Far too often government regulators and bureaucrats ignore Reality – to tilt at ideological windmills. And WAY too often government becomes one giant stenographer for contributors – writing laws and regulations to accommodate their check-cutters’ every whim and wildest dream.
Dangerous manmade global cooling, global warming, climate change and extreme weather claims continue to justify what has become a $1.5-trillion-per-year industry: tens of billions spent annually on one-sided research and hundreds of billions sent to crony corporatists to subsidize replacing dependable, affordable carbon-based fuels with unreliable, expensive “renewable” energy.
President Reagan once said, “The nearest thing to eternal life we will ever see on this earth is a government program.” The omnibus budget package being negotiated on Capitol Hill is a perfect example.
In something of a joke, President Barack Obama says Americans should actually read the Transpacific Partnership Agreement. The agreement itself consists of 30 chapters, with 144 annexes (43 of which are imbedded into specific chapters). Assuming the average American reads 200 pages a day, it would take a month. The length and complexity of the TPP Agreement signals that it is not fundamentally a free trade agreement, but is rather a managed trade agreement. As Obama has said, “I know that if you take a look at what’s actually in the TPP, you will see that this is, in fact, a new type of trade deal.”
Since the economic downturn of 2008, the critics of capitalism have redoubled their efforts to persuade the American people and many others around the world that the system of individual freedom and free enterprise has failed.
Passed into law with the stated intention of protecting consumers from low-quality service providers, occupational licensing laws in fact hurt consumers by insulating existing businesses from competition and preventing people from using their talents to earn a living in ways that might serve consumers better.
Look, we get why Democrats want to use the giant-ness of the federal government to punish their enemies and reward their friends. Crony Socialism is in their ideological DNA. And they grow government as huge as possible – to then have the largest possible weapon to wield.
The Barack Obama Administration is – even more than any of its predecessors – the Crony Socialism Administration. No prior presidency has used and abused government to do more for its friends – and more to its friends’ competitors – than has this one.
“Trade Wars” actually aren’t about trade — they are about government trade policy. If peoples are trading freely, there isn’t a “War” – there’s commerce. The “Wars” only happen when governments get involved, placing tariffs, regulations and subsidies in the way of the flow.
Six of the largest oil companies in the world, all from outside the United States, have released a joint statement to the United Nations calling for governments to impose a global “price on carbon” by levying a tax or fee on the carbon dioxide emissions generated by power plants. Liberal groups have been fawning over the news, trumpeting that “Big Oil” has taken up the mantle of fighting climate change. Those groups are overlooking – or more likely intentionally ignoring – the fact this announcement is nothing more than classic cronyism, not a sudden concern for the climate.
Keynesians never seem to learn. Every time an economy slows down or reverses gears and “goes negative,” in terms of growth and employment, their only answer is a call for “aggregate demand” stimulus and more government spending manipulation.
In today’s edition of The Heartland Daily Podcast, Managing Editor of Environment & Climate News H. Sterling Burnett speaks with Lindsay Leveen. Leveen runs a groundbreaking, award-winning, news blog called Green Explored. Burnett and Leveen discuss Bloom Energy.
Congressman Grijalva and Senators Markey, Boxer and Whitehouse sent letters to universities, think tanks and companies, demanding detailed information on skeptics’ funding and activities – in an attempt to destroy their funding, reputations and careers, while advancing “crony climate alarm science.”
In today’s edition of The Heartland Daily Podcast, Managing Editor of Budget & Tax News Jesse Hathaway speaks with Michelle Minton. Minton is a fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute. Minton and Hathaway discuss the recently introduced Restoring America’s Wire Act (RAWA). Minton explains how RAWA would benefit some very entrenched special interests at the expense of everyday Americans.