Ronald Regan once said, “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same.” Setting aside personal opinions about the president, one cannot argue that this quote is just as real and important today as it has ever been in the history of our country. Today, the people of America cannot even imagine a world where individuals are free from federal government violating their rights. Students at schools are not allowed to express their rights to speech, businesses are burdened by taxes and the children of this country are being born into a country that is $17 trillion in debt. However, America can still broaden its shoulders, and fight for a future where individuals are free and economically prosperous.
Currently, a Fraser study, ranking total economic freedom in countries, shows America slipping. In 2000, America was ranked number two in economic freedom; today, America is number 17. According to Joshua Hall, an economist and author of the report, “I think I would view the report as kind of a canary in the coal mine. These are warning signs that we’re becoming over-regulated, we’re spending too much, we’re racking up too much debt. We need to understand that our current economic prosperity was dependent in large part on the government sticking to its core functions.” America is no longer a country where the government exists to fulfill its original purpose, protecting our natural rights. Today, government takes taxpayer money to pay for universal healthcare advertising and conduct other programs that would never be allowed to operate so poorly under free markets where businesses would compete to meet customer demands. All of these regulations eliminate options in the market; when one does not have many options, they do not have a large choice in what products are available.
America is not only great because of the variety of options the country offers, but, also because of the powerful freedom to express truthful opinions on product quality. From a fundamentalist to progressive, one must be convinced with facts about quality, not the size of a fist. The facts all can agree on is that America is $17 trillion in debt and slipping in world ranks when it comes to economic freedom (letting you decide what to do with your own money). I order to fix our country, one cannot look back at what America used to be and try to create an unattainable utopia to strive for nor van anyone over-look the violations of individuals rights that occur today. Let’s look forward. America will not retain its freedom and prosperity if it remains a country dependent on government doing more than protecting natural rights. The solution does not lie in taking an irrational approach to dealing with government or by letting our country become dependent on their “services.” The solution is for individuals to become independent and to be free to provide the same services government attempts to, but more efficiently and with better quality. Then, America will see a new kind of prosperity where the wants of the country shine and lead the world into the future.