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Source link: http://archive.mises.org/12578/if-you-think-the-us-chamber-of-commerce-is-in-favor-of-free-markets-think-again/

If You Think the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Is in Favor of Free Markets, Then You Might Want To Think Again

April 28, 2010 by

Once again, Ron Paul gets the lowest GOP score from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce

By: Timothy P. Carney

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has issued its 2009 congressional scorecard, and once again, Rep. Ron Paul, R-Tex. — certainly one of the two most free-market politicians in Washington — gets the lowest score of any Republican.

Paul was one of a handful of GOP lawmakers not to win the Chamber’s “Spirit of Enterprise Award.” He scored only a 67%, bucking the Chamber on four votes, including:

* Paul opposed the “Solar Technology Roadmap Act,” which boosted subsidies for unprofitable solar energy technology.
* Paul opposed the “Travel Promotion Act,” which subsidizes the tourism industry with a new fee on international visitors.
* Paul opposed the largest spending bill in history, Obama’s $787 billion stimulus bill.

Read more at the Washington Examiner.

Last year Tim Carney wrote:

Sen. Jim DeMint, R-S.C., had the most conservative voting record in 2008 according to the American Conservative Union (ACU), and was a “taxpayer hero” according to the National Taxpayer’s Union (NTU), but the U.S. Chamber of Commerce says his 2008 record was less pro-business than Barack Obama, Joe Biden, and Hillary Clinton.

Similarly, Texas libertarian GOPer Rep. Ron Paul—the most steadfast congressional opponent of regulation, taxation, and any sort of government intervention in business—scored lower than 90% of Democrats last year on the Chamber’s scorecard.

Evidently, pro-business does not mean pro-freedom in the US Chamber of Commerce’s perspective, but only more mercantilism and corporatism.

{ 10 comments }

Gu Si Fang April 28, 2010 at 3:30 am

“one of the two most free-market politicians in Washington” : who’s #2 ?

Old Hop April 28, 2010 at 8:14 am

Fang — I think #2 is probably Jim DeMint.

Gene Berman April 28, 2010 at 6:09 am

Move along, folks–nutthin’ to see here.

Slim934 April 28, 2010 at 7:20 am

Actually this makes sense when you consider that most organs of the federal government equate capitalism with rampant corporatism.

When you equate pro-business with corporatism, then you would indeed rate Ron Paul lowest on the list.

Justin Ptak April 28, 2010 at 7:34 am

Yes, except the US Chamber of Commerce is the world’s largest not-for-profit lobbying group, representing many businesses and associations across the United States of America.

It’s mission statement purports to be: “To advance human progress through an economic, political and social system based on individual freedom, incentive, initiative, opportunity, and responsibility.”

Slim934 April 28, 2010 at 8:31 am

Oh they’re a lobbying group which specifically lobby’s for American businesses!

Well hell that’s a better explanation than I just gave! No wonder they despise Ron Paul; his entire political career is essentially trying to get them to stop sucking on the public teet.

J Cortez April 28, 2010 at 9:00 am

There are approximately 2000 subsidies on the books, in addition to an uncountable number of tax breaks, thousands of pages of regulations, as well as dozens of regulatory agencies designed to interfere with market affairs. Part of this is design on the part of lobbyists for large companies, part of this is design on the part of social democrats that despise the market and seek to curb it, and part of this is just the nature of bureaucracy.

The sad fact is, many businesses, especially the largest ones, do not want a free market. That their non-profit lobbying group says so is not surprising. This is why they shouldn’t be listened to. No enterprise should be given any sympathy in the marketplace. That’s the entire point of the market. Advancement only happens at the whim of consumers.

Dick Fox April 28, 2010 at 3:33 pm

The US Chamber supported FDR.

Bill Miller April 29, 2010 at 7:15 pm

Although Adam Smith was a terrible theorist (having subscribed to both the real bills doctrine and the labor theory of value in his work), he did make one useful observation: pro-business and pro-free market often do not mean the same thing, and may even be mutually exclusive. The US chamber of commerce is just one of many examples.

john@allcrystalchandeliers.com November 29, 2010 at 9:16 am

I wouldn’t say the “most free-market politicians in Washington” but certainly in the top 20. He is just very vocal. Ron Paul has a heck of alot of good to say and I for one admire the man.

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