The principal sin of government is not that it does too little. The principal sin is that it does too much. We must be vigilant against this instinctive overreaching of government every day, but during challenging economic times like these, we must be even stronger. Government cannot solve everyone's problems, and when it tries, the infallible law of unintended consequences inevitably dictates the outcome.
Yesterday, President Obama announced yet another program to spend money that America doesn't have on another "stimulus" program. Forget that America has already thrown away hundreds of billions in borrowed money on the President's many "stimulus" ideas. Forget that another $250 billion has absolutely no chance of changing the direction of our $14 trillion economy. Remember how this email began: "The sin isn't that the government does too little; it is that it does too much."
Against that backdrop, I refer you to an article in last week's Wall Street Journal that talks about manufacturing in America and why it is expanding. The article details how Whirlpool considered manufacturing expansions in Mexico and elsewhere yet ultimately decided to expand facilities in Ohio and Tennessee. In fact, the article details manufacturing expansions taking place among several domestic producers and big exporters. How can this be given all of the bad news that we read about manufacturing in America? The Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago explains: "If people gauge the strength of U.S. manufacturing on employment you come up with a very different conclusion than if you focus on production."
That one sentence explains so much about the failure of government solutions and it explains so much about the success of private sector solutions. When government micromanages, it focuses on people and employment, but the private sector focuses on productivity, and with productivity growth comes economic growth, and with economic growth naturally comes employment and wealth for people.
America has the hardest working, best educated, most productive workforce in the world. It's okay that there are cheaper fingers in other parts of the world as long as American fingers can produce more for less and they can. The manufacturing community knows this. What then can the government do to help this process along? I have said it over and over, and I will continue to say it over and over again until the political elite gets it: Government can get out of the way!
We don't need to spend $250 billion in borrowed money on a program to incentivize businesses to hire. We do need to eliminate the government mandated disincentives that encourage businesses to shrink or to leave. If manufacturers are trying to expand in America even in this tough economic time, how much more would they do if we got government out of the way? I think that we should find out!
America's corporate tax rate is highest in the world, and government alone can change that. America's payroll tax is the largest tax that 80% of Americans pay, and government alone can change that. Our manufacturers want to lead the way back to prosperity. If you and I can get government out of their way, they can make it happen.
My commitment to you is that I will begin each day working for you with exactly this goal. Together, we can ensure that America's best days are ahead.