This is appalling for several reasons.
First, we are out of control on subsidies in general. We currently pay people not to plant and reimburse them for either buying or not buying. This distorts the markets and has gotten very far out of control. Subsidies may have some place in the tool box (emphasis on may), but should be limited, for emergencies and “sunsetted” so the subsidy does not become a permanent handout.
Second, the rationale behind subsidies is to improve the domestic economy, not aid a foreign owned company as it competes to do business with our own companies. Last time I checked we had American steel companies. If we don’t there are legitimate ways to help re-start them. If this steel had been something they couldn’t produce, they should be encouraged legitimately to do so. We shouldn’t be handing out money to foreign owned rivals.
Third, Russia is hardly a traditional friend, or even a neutral country, much less an ally. We are helping them to produce high grade materials they will us against us either economically or in some even less friendly geopolitical sense. These are the same
Russians who have been oh-s0 helpful in containing Iran. The counter-argument is something about helping a Russian firm. Oh. Do you see the Russian government helping out a struggling US aerospace firm? If they tried, wouldn’t there be objections?
Finally, we are using taxpayer dollars to subsidize and bailout lots of questionable foreign deals from banks (Bernanke has apparently been pretty loose with taxpayer dollars for propping up banks) and now to steel.
This must stop.