Kill The Ex-Im Bank: Let Free Markets Work

If Congress kills the Export-Import Bank it would be a massive win for those who love free markets. Both Jason Pye and Alice Salles have pointed out how the bank is a massive cronyism scheme, which doesn’t really help anyone except a select few. Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan made an excellent comment on the bank saying, “Republicans should be pro-market, not necessary pro-business.” This is something more people need to realize. Liking the free market doesn’t mean liking massive corporations, unless their products or services are great.

That isn’t stopping President Barack Obama from demanding Ex-Im be reauthorized. He said last week Americans would lose jobs if the bank wasn’t kept alive. Obama even made a comparison to owning a Ford dealership which doesn’t offer financing, while a Toyota dealership across the street does.

This analogy is laughable. Toyota runs its own financial services company, while Subaru teamed up with Chase bank for financing. There are plenty of other banks which offer financial services, especially for those companies hoping to increase their overseas footprint. Even General Electric has its own financial services department and they got $2.6 billion from Ex-Im.

In the end, it comes down to making the best product. If Boeing’s planes are the best, then others will buy them. If GE’s products work so well, then companies will use them. The same with Caterpillar. If a company can’t afford the products, that’s when financial services come in. There are ways for different parties to draw up a contract and reach an agreement on goods and services. That’s how the free market works.

GE Chief Executive Jeff Immelt thinks keeping the Ex-Im Bank alive will help trade in Africa because it will show the government has “some skin in the game.” Isn’t that the definition of corporatism? It isn’t the government’s job to have “skin in the game” when it comes to businesses and their products.

Let the companies with the best products and services survive.


It’s time to kill the Export-Import Bank for good.

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