How Republicans in Nevada Caved to Crony Capitalism, and Lost

Crony capitalism is like red wine. It’ll turn on you.

(From The Daily Signal)

The governor stopped in Beijing on the way home from a trade mission to Australia, where he met Jia to ensure he was serious about setting up shop in Las Vegas. Whatever Jia said to him, it carried the day.

Soon afterward, the governor called a special session of the Legislature, which approved a $175 million infrastructure bond as well as $250 million in tax abatements.

Faraday promised to invest $1 billion in the plant and create 4,500 jobs in economically challenged North Las Vegas. Legislative leaders rammed the deal through the body, with only a handful of conservatives voting against it.

I was asked to present the bond to the state’s board of finance for approval.

To shorten an 18-month story, this deal was suspect from the start: a company that had never produced a car in its history, entering a very crowded industrial field, built in the middle of parched sand dunes, financed exclusively by a mysterious—now clearly a rogue—Chinese entrepreneur.

What could go wrong?

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