It looks like Wisconsin is dealing with another incident of arsonist firefighters. That's the term I like to use for politicians whose policies and laws create economic or social "emergencies" and then who come up with "plans" to save the day. Kind of like a fireman who would set a house on fire--then expect awards for heroism after saving the people inside.
Past examples include Senator Chris Dodd and Congressman Barney Frank--who both pushed for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to back high-risk mortgages to people who couldn't afford houses in the early 2000's--then helped to draft the mortgage bailout plan (which is also failing to keep more than a third of enrollees out of foreclosure) and mortgage regulatory reform acts to clean up the mess they helped to create.
Another example would be Governor Doyle and Democrats in the Legislature who raise personal and business taxes and fees by five-billion dollars in the last budget--then come riding to the rescue with tax credits and incentives packages for Mercury Marine when it threatens to move production to more "tax friendly" Oklahoma. Our heroes!
Now today, President Obama is expected to address the mess he has created for the Bucyrus Corporation. The maker of mining equipment is stymied by the refusal of the US Export-Import Bank's to guarantee loans they need to fill a 600-million dollar order for an energy company that runs a coal mine in India. It's not that the bank thinks either of the entitites isn't credit-worthy--the problem is the coal mine project violates the Obama Administration's new limit on "carbon footprint" and expected emissions from the coal-fired power plants that will be fed by the mine. So one-thousand Bucyrus employees are having their jobs put in jeopardy by Green Initiatives supported by the President.
I wish the President would cancel his appearance in Racine today and instead head over to Bucyrus to tell the union workers who likely voted for him two years ago why he thinks keeping the planet one-tenth of one-degree cooler over the next decade is more important than allowing them to keep feeding their families for the next ten years. Maybe he could put out that fire by assuring them that Congress will approve extending their unemployment benefits for up to three years.
But never fear--Mr Obama could announce today during his visit to Racine that he is asking the Export-Import Bank to "reconsider" the rejection of the loan application. Amazingly, that loan will likely breeze right through--especially when you consider the Indian company is about to enter into negotiations with Chinese mine equipment makers. Of course, that would also make him look like a hypocrite to his "Eco-Supporters"--but that is the kind of risk you take when you rely on theoretical economists as your advisors--instead of people who have actually run businesses in the free market.
And all of this heroism could still be for naught. Lurking around the corner is Assembly Speaker Mike Sheridan with a tanker full of jet fuel to spray on the glowing embers of the Bucyrus fire. He is already on record as saying that if Democrats retain the majority in the Assembly, he will bring back Governor Doyle's "Clean Energy Jobs Bill" with its arbitrary renewable energy requirements that will force utilities in the state to build more money-losing wind farms and jack up the price of electricity--thereby making it more expensive for Bucyrus to build monster machines--and therefore marking them far less competitive in the global economy.
Almost makes you think about lighting yourself on fire.