One of the most interesting political battles this year is over the Export-Import Bank. The Ex-Im Bank is one of those crony capitalist institutions that aids a few well-connected companies, but does nothing for nearly all exporters and actually harms some American firms that have to compete with foreigners who get to buy at lower cost. How so? In this Detroit News piece, Veronique de Rugy of Cato Institute explains.

The fight over the Bank is a modern day re-enactment of the early battles between the Hamiltonians, who thought that the federal government had to help certain industries, and the Jeffersonians, who wanted to keep the government out of business affairs. What the Hamiltonians and their current intellectual descendants, the interventionists in both parties don’t get is that government can’t aid anyone without making someone else worse off.