Location: Granite Falls, North Carolina, United States

I'm an ordained United Methodist minister no longer pastoring churches, a former media producer with skills ten years out of date, a writer trying to sell my first novel, and a sales associate keeping body and soul together working for the People's Republic of Corporate America. I'm married to the most wonderful woman in the world, who was my best friend for 17 years before we married.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

On Getting Government Out of the Way (Reprise)

You don't hear people asking for government to get out of the way much now that the Gulf of Mexico is becoming one big oil slick.  Instead, they are running to government complaining, "Why haven't you fixed this yet?"  This is actually a prime example of what happens when government gets out of the way.

One more time:  Government got out of the way when it came to mine safety, and 29 more miners died in West Virginia this spring.

Government got out of the way of the banking and insurance industries and the economy collapsed as a result.

Government got out of the way of the Savings and Loan industry in the Reagan years and we taxpayers were on the hook for $200 billion.

Before that, the government got out of the way of the airline industry and we lost Eastern and Pan-Am, and flying is nowhere near the fun it used to be.

They complain about the "nanny state," but whenever the nanny lets them go they get into trouble and come running to the nanny to fix everything.  The oil disaster in the Gulf is going to cost us taxpayers a bundle.  The financial collapse has cost us untold tax dollars, both directly in bailouts and in lost taxes not collected from workers whose jobs have disappeared.  The other times the government got out of the way cost us plenty, too.

"Free enterprise" is a contraction of "private enterprise" and "free competition."  Government's role is as a regulator to make sure competition remains free, that everyone has an opportunity to compete fairly.  Getting government out of the way has caused the playing field to tilt, competition to suffer as smaller companies are gobbled up by giant corporations that as a result become "too big to [be allowed to] fail."

We need leadership that can grasp this truth so prosperity and safety can be restored to our country.


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