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Declining Market Power Means Fewer Limits on Government

With much of American finance and industry either on the government dole or desperately trying to get on it, market constraints on political abuses have fallen dramatically.  Writes Irwin Steltzer:
Paulson, of course, continues to preside over the billions-going-on-trillions that will be made available to whatever industries make the best case for a hand-out. You might recall that the Treasury Secretary came to Washington after heading up Goldman Sachs, a firm now reporting billions in losses after abandoning its business model in favor of status as a government-sheltered commercial bank. Nothing more clearly demonstrates the shift of power from Wall Street to Washington than the Paulson saga. Once the man who raised private-sector funds for private-sector businesses from his perch at Goldman, he is now the man who distributes taxpayer funds to private-sector businesses from his perch at the Treasury.
John McCain denounced Barack Obama for being a "socialist" for wanting to increase taxes.  But it's the endless bail-outs, supported by Sen. McCain, and so many other Republicans, that have cost America its designation as a genuine free market economy.