What should we do about the problems in our economy, and how important is it that we reform entitlements? Ask the typical majority voter about these topics and they’ll be ignorant and/or apathetic. “I don’t know” and “I don’t care.”
Conservatives need to wage war on ignorance and apathy. We need to educate enough people to create a grass roots drive to improve the economy and make things better for everyone. More people should understand the problems and possible solutions and care enough to want to do something about them. We need a Tea Party on steroids.
Let’s begin with politics 101. It’s simple enough, but not enough Republicans and perhaps no Democrats at all understand this: we are divided over Big Government or a great economy. We can’t have both.
Big Government leads to a situation like Spain or Greece. A great economy gives full employment and prosperity for nearly everyone, and it’s even good for the government. People pay taxes, and the federal government makes out like a bandit. (Oops, I forgot. The federal government is a bandit.)
Why can’t we have both Big Government and a great economy? The answer is that Big Government is based on spending and redistribution of wealth. In order to spend, it has to rely on heavy taxation, which takes money away from the economy. Profits are taken from businesses, so they can’t invest or hire. People don’t have as much money to spend, so they don’t -- and the economy slows down even more.
Big Government also relies on heavy regulation. After all, the politicians think if there’s a problem, they can fix it with a federal program. The program needs lots of rules and regulations. Businesses have to follow those regulations, no matter the cost, or pay heavy penalties. Regulations slow the economy.
The last nail in Big Government’s coffin? Unintended consequences. Every new federal law is like an experiment, and we are the guinea pigs. Many times, it doesn’t turn out as politicians (not noted for brains) think it will. Example: under Bill Clinton, Democrats passed a new luxury tax on yachts (we’ll get those slimy millionaires!) But alas, the wealthy folks immediately stopped buying them. Almost no tax was collected, and the yacht-building industry was stopped in its tracks. The Democrats had to rescind the tax. Note -- The Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) is the biggest experiment in American history.
Why would anyone want a good economy? Apparently, slightly over half of American voters don’t, as proved by the fact that they re-elected Obama. But I do. There have been a few periods in America when the economy was in great shape. One such run was during the Clinton and Bush years, up to the housing collapse. Jobs were plentiful. Unemployment was low. People saved money and built wealth. The federal government ran a much smaller deficit. People had confidence in the future. Confidence is less plentiful now.
The economy is like an aircraft engine. When it runs well, the plane will fly. When it doesn’t, we’re in danger of a crash. I believe the airplane is a really good analogy for our situation. Leftist politicians keep adding weight (by spending) and reducing the engine’s power (taxing and regulation.) We’ll come back to Earth soon. It won’t be pretty.