The Audacity of Obama’s Cronyism

Published on February 13, 2014

By Edward Woodson

Cronyism is not new in America. It’s been here since before the United States. British taxes and tariffs were intended to protect business back home. Even after the Revolution, the first act of the newly minted Congress of the United States was to pass a tariff intended to protect domestic producers. Throughout our nation’s history, granting crony benefits to those close to government has been a bipartisan affair. Nevertheless, the Obama administration has unapologetically taken cronyism to new historic heights.

Immediately upon taking office President Obama violated his own ban on hiring lobbyists and began filling his administration with executives from his favorite industries who rapidly began writing and influencing policy. Then came the spending. Despite repeatedly decrying “corporate welfare,” Obama and Democrats in Congress have given hundreds of billions of dollars away to politically allied corporations and industries from green tech companies run by donors to the ever loyal unions. They even risked the Web portal driving their most prized legislative achievement, Obamacare, to a sole source contract with cronies.

Where companies like Solyndra and Fisker have received a great deal of attention, another Democrat-allied industry has quietly, and sometimes secretively, been reaping rewards from the croniest-of-them-all administration – Hollywood and the Big Content Industry.

The digital age has taken its toll on Big Content. Rather than change and innovate to meet the times, Big Content has sought to prop up an outdated business model using the force of government. Last year, the Obama Department of Commerce released their Internet Policy Task Force Privacy Green Paper that vocally endorsed a key item on the Recording Industry Artists of America’s (RIAA) wish list – the imposition of a performance tax on all songs played on the radio. Around the same time this paper was released, legislation was introduced into Congress that would implement this tax and grant a government-backed monopoly to a handful of record label executives to set the price of royalties. The bill would actually outlaw any one-on-one free-market negotiations between radio stations and record labels.

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Edward Woodson is the host of “The Edward Woodson Show,” which airs weekdays 7-8 a.m. on WZAB Miami and in Phoenix, Ariz., on KFNX News-Talk Radio 1100 Live 5-6 a.m. MT. Check out