VALLEY PATRIOT EDITORIAL
The voters have spoken. Republicans have been entrusted with the power to establish and direct government policy. President Bush won a clear victory in both the popular vote and the Electoral College. The Senate is now 55% Republican and the House of Representatives has a 53-54% Republican majority. Republican Governors lead 28 or 29 of the 50 states and Republicans control a majority of state legislatures.
There is no longer any basis for obfuscation. Republicans have the power to put their policies into practice. It is time to put up or shut up. It is now or never.
Democrat-inspired socialist policies have dominated American society since President Roosevelt’s Administration and have led to an epidemic of societal dysfunctions.
Among the worst:
* Health care costs have spiraled out of control because health care has not been subject to reasonable consumer assessments of cost-benefit tradeoffs.
*Individual responsibility for retirement savings has been replaced with a government-sponsored, inter-generational Ponzi scheme called Social Security.
* Educational resources have been squandered while pandering to special interests and while abandoning the most special of interests – our children and their rightful futures.
* Our economy has been strangled by an immense and complex tax/regulatory burden that distorts economic decision-making and depresses the standard of living of all Americans. Republicans have long argued that they have solutions to these failed socialist policies. If Republicans don’t move decisively to correct these problems now, they will be blamed for their consequences (as they should be). The public will then assume that the solutions lie in accepting Democrat promises to expand these programs even further. We may never recover if this happens.
Here is a recommended core agenda for our Republican government:
* Health care institutions and professionals must be freed of government control. Tax preferences should be eliminated. Consumers need to be put back in the driver’s seat when health care spending decisions are made … i.e., they need to experience a dollar spent or saved when they decide to buy or forego a healthcare purchase. Rational decision-making will dramatically lower costs and improve health care quality. Expansion of Health Savings Accounts is a good first step … but only a first step.
* Our current Social Security commitment to retirees needs to be kept while aggressively privatizing retirement savings for younger Americans. People need to be put in control of their own destinies and relieved of dependency on self-serving government sleight-of-hand. Over time, retirees will end up replacing empty government promises with real and substantial investment accounts.
* The government’s near-monopoly in education needs to be ended along with its attendant failures. Consumer choice must be restored. Education vouchers, with strict limits on government meddling in private educational choices, are a good place to start. Billions spent on unresponsive and self-serving institutions that ignore the needs of our children must be replaced by educational enterprises that will only serve their own interests if they serve the educational interests of our children.
* Our tax burden needs to be substantially reduced … at least cut in half over the next four years (including permanent elimination of the Estate Tax). The complexity of our tax code needs to be reduced a thousand fold. A simple flat tax is a good start with an initial maximum tax rate of 16%, followed by 2% reductions in the maximum tax rate each year until the maximum rate is reduced to 10% or less. Widespread elimination of artificial government regulations should follow (while maintaining strong anti-fraud statutes) thus making way for naturally occurring, free-market solutions to societal problems.
These are just a start, but they are a good start and will go a long way towards draining the swamp of government failures. This simple 4-part agenda will free our economy and spark an explosion of economic growth accompanied by a rapid increase in our standard of living.
This election provides a watershed opportunity to cast-off the government stranglehold on our freedoms and on human achievement.
If we don’t do this now, when will we? Do we want to wait until the continuing failures of current Democrat-inspired policies leads Hillary to offer us more magic ‘government solutions’?