Beyond Liberty, We Must Restore Opportunity

As we fight to preserve (and even restore) our liberties we must also insist loudly on the restoration and preservation of economic opportunity in our country and our lives.    The other day I blogged at RedState about the fact that Obama is about to be blind-sided by a segment of the economy he knows nothing about.

Small businesspeople, and perhaps more importantly, potential small businesspeople, are paying attention.  And they don’t like the ‘opportunity environment’ that they see.  They heard that the EPA is going to tell farmers not to raise dust to grow our food.  They see that even politically correct solar projects can’t get build because of compliance issues and that restaurants will soon have to post calorie counts on drive-thru menus… and even the tiniest of small home businesses get hit with ‘involuntary unionization’ of home health service providers here and home day care providers here.  You probably have your own list of small business horrors that deprive every American of the opportunity to self-empower themselves toward more income and more wealth.

But how many of these people are going to risk even a tiny bit of ‘capital’ in these times when the government is taking over literally everything?  Not many; and many are opting to get out.

Restoring opportunity is going to do much more for us than bring back prosperous times.  It’s also opportunity (and yes, greed) that causes people to volunteer to leave the ‘entitlement’ rolls… so they can make much more money with only a little more effort.

And in today’s new health care environment, do you think that the former Medicaid patient who is now a modestly prosperous businessperson is going to have the ‘patience’ to look for a doctor who is still accepting Medicaid/Medicare (probably rare) when they can afford a good policy and just go see a good doctor for a modest co-pay?

All this and more will happen all by itself if we just provision this country with the same opportunity environment that existed when I started my own business as recently as 1994.

We must do much more than just fight for liberty this season.  We must fight for conservative politicians who insist on restoring opportunity by rescinding much of the regulatory authority granted to government agencies.  We must insist that our public servants work actively to roll back over-regulation.

One stunning statistic illustrates the type of opportunity I’m talking about: on a planet of 6.8 billion people, there will soon be 5 billion cell phones.  Would Ma Bell ever have done that?  Could any government have done that?  No.  Free markets did that.  You may recall that this actually began over 30 years ago when Reagan broke up Ma Bell and insisted on competition in the telephone marketplace.    And remember that for many, these ‘phones’ are now much more than just phones.  With computers that have our contact list, calendars, our social networking sites – they are almost copies of our entire lives in electronic miniature.  Free enterprise and competition did that.  Yes, it was painful for many, including me, when Global Crossing went under, but how many whine about that today?  Free enterprise and competition may bring some occasional temporary pain, but is there any other social/political structure that could have delivered these magic devices many of us carry?  No.  Many made money, and most of our lives were vastly enriched, even if we pay, rather than profit.  By the way, I have never heard of a cell phone program where 3rd party payors pay anybody’s cell phone bill — competition has brought the costs down far enough that almost nobody complains about the price.

Insist that those who propose to serve you this fall work hard for opportunity, not wealth redistribution, for all Americans.

And we do that by getting government off the backs of ordinary people