Ron Paul's Texas Straight Talk - A weekly Column

November 10, 1997

Communist China shouldn't be financed by US
Congress takes steps towards implementing Paul's China policy By US Representative Ron Paul

Each year the people of the United States write a check to subsidize China, one of the most brutal, anti-American regimes in the world. It has been in vogue of late for everyone in Washington, it seems, to eagerly denounce the egregious abuses of the Chinese people at the hands of the communist dictators. Yet no one in our federal government has been willing to take China on in any meaningful way.

Very few people realize that China is one of the biggest beneficiaries of American subsidization. Thanks to the largess of the Congress and the President, China enjoys subsidized trade and the flow of US taxpayers cash into Beijing's coffers.

I was pleased to introduce a piece of legislation several months ago which would have ended the $4 billion subsidy our nation quietly gives China through the US government's Export-Import Bank. The bank underwrites the purchases of goods and services by the Chinese government and others around the world. Unfortunately, only 37 Republicans and three Democrats supported my measure. Apparently, the Congress just wasn't willing to take that big of a step in ending US support of the Communist reign of terror.

But this past week, Congress took a few, very small, baby-steps in the direction I have long advocated.

Of the numerous measures which came before the House of Representatives late in the week, perhaps the best was one discussed and voted upon Thursday night. While it was not as strong as the measure I introduced, by passing overwhelmingly, it signals a changing attitude in Congress. Simply, the measure calls on the United States' representatives on the World Bank and other international governmental bodies to begin voting against giving China loans and subsidies. At present, China receives more than $4 billion from those organizations, which are themselves financed heavily by the United States.

There is no constitutional authority for the United States to make loans to any country, and certainly no basis for giving away the hard-earned cash of Americans to communist leaders who brutalize their women and children with forced abortions, and persecute Christians for their faith.

In reality, there is very little the federal government can do about the conditions in China. Under our Constitution, the federal government simply does not have the authority to go in and point a gun at the Chinese leaders, and force them to respect the principles of liberty. It just doesn't work that way. I tend to believe that by Americans engaging the Chinese people, opening personal dialogues, and by seeking to change the hearts of the people of China, we will soon see that regime collapse. The laws of economics dictates that a communist system cannot stand for long. But in the same way, I firmly believe, there is a higher law which dictates that when people are exposed to the principles of liberty, they will not for long allow themselves to a shackled to an oppressive government.

So while the Constitution does not allow the federal government to send America's sons into battle over the living conditions in China, there is also no constitutional basis for sending our tax dollars over to support the very dictatorship we rightly despise.

The measure passed by the House of Representatives last week is a small step toward denying the Beijing communists access to the easy money which has propped up their country for last several decades. It's just a step, but we had to start somewhere.

And, who knows, maybe next year - when I will again have the opportunity to introduce my amendment to end US subsidy of China - we will see more Members of Congress willing to stop handing the monster of Asia a $4 billion check. Ron Paul represents the 14th District of Texas. His office may be contacted at 203 Cannon, Washington, DC 20515.