Last week at a Chamber of Commerce jobs summit shindig, Obama supporter and head of General Electric Co. Jeffrey Immelt pushed a "repatriation tax holiday" to help pay for the infrastructure bank. The idea would be to pressure companies to redistribute foreign profits back to the U.S. by giving them a special tax break. But this isn't just any ordinary tax relief. And this isn't just any ordinary company championing the proposal. This is the same GE lobbying machine that has raised rent-seeking -- squeezing special regulatory and economic favors from government pals -- to an art form.
As Trey Kovacs at the Competitive Enterprise Institute points out: "GE notoriously paid zero taxes in 2010. GE has continuously lobbied Congress for beneficial legislation while contributing millions to top-down spending Democratic cronies to achieve these ends. ... In true GE fashion, the purpose of this financial policy is for GE to benefit from government subsidies from the infrastructure bank, and with Obama in charge, there is no doubt GE will be one of the largest beneficiaries of this government spending."
In keeping with the increasing delegation of spending powers to unelected bureaucrats and donors, infrastructure bank projects would be funded based on their "social benefits," among other progressive criteria, by an Obama-appointed panel.
Yes, ignore the bicker-fest. Democrats and Republicans are joining hands to kick the proverbial can down the road, toss it over the guard rail and plunge it irretrievably into a Grand Canyon of $6 trillion in new debt over the next four years. It's back to big government-spending as usual. Party on.