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Here's Why the Export-Import Bank's Charter Needs to Be Terminated

by Katie Nielsen

 

This September, Congress will have the opportunity to terminate a federal “bank” that doles out loans to foreign countries and well-connected major corporations while leaving taxpayers like you are on the hook for any losses.

Heritage Foundation expert Diane Katz explains that the costs of the Depression-era Ex-Im Bank outweigh the benefits: 

 

Ex–Im advocates offer myriad excuses for maintaining government interference in export financing, including job creation, gaps in private investment, and government subsidies lavished on foreign firms. Such justifications do not stand up to the facts, and the purported benefits, if any, are not commensurate with the risk to taxpayers. 

 


Unfortunately, Katz continues, special interests benefit from its largesse. “The bank is a conduit for corporate welfare beset by unreliable risk management, inefficiency, and cronyism.” Even then-candidate Barack Obama described it in 2008 as “little more than a fund for corporate welfare.”

This type of government interference inevitably “distorts the competitive landscape, with winners and losers determined by political considerations rather than the merit of their products and services,” Katz argues.

Do you think the Ex-Im Bank’s charter should be terminated?

The U.S. government is preparing to transfer the oversight it has had over the Internet -- oversight that has helped keep the Internet open and free -- to the United Nations. 

Some countries, like Russia and China, are eager for the United Nations to take over the oversight role. That’s because they favor censorship and other limitations on online speech and commerce.

Heritage legal expert Paul Rosenzweig said in testimony before a House committee last week that lawmakers should be cautious “lest the transition destroy the openness and freedom of the network.”

Watch this video from the Foundry for a primer on the topic, then tell us in the comments: do you think the “international community” should play a role in overseeing the Internet?

 
  
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