18 October 2012 0 Comments

People before Profits! – Protectionist Obama Administration Protects Profits of Political Corporate Cronies

Don Boudreaux of Cafe Hayek, “where orders emerge”,  explains  “profits before people” and Crony Capitalism, or more technically, Corporatism, a form of Statism, socialism or fascism or communism:

Free markets are often criticized for encouraging the fanatical pursuit of profits at the expense of other worthwhile goals, such as a cleaner environment. Such criticism, of course, springs from failure to understand the true nature of markets and of the institutions – most notably, property rights – in which markets are embedded.

However, there is one institution where this accusation is a fair one.  This institution all too often elevates the pursuit of profit into a dangerous obsession: government. How else can one describe the Obama administration’s imposition of “provisional antidumping duties of between 31% and nearly 250% on solar panels containing Chinese-made solar cells?” (“Solar Flare-Up: Back Tax Roils U.S. Firms,” Aug. 25)  Uncle Sam is intentionally raising Americans’ costs on products that the government itself insists are good for the environment. Government is doing so only to protect the profits of American solar-panel producers.

Consumers and the environment be damned! What needs protecting above all, apparently, are the profits of Uncle Sam’s corporate cronies.

Donald J. Boudreaux  Professor of Economics  George Mason University

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