I am a capitalist and not ashamed of it in the slightest. Free market economies with principles of maximum economic freedom at their core have done more to lift people out of poverty and improve the lives of everyone else than any other economic system ever attempted. And yet, when the supposed political champions of free market philosophy hold their convention, there is no direct mention of it. Their video tribute to Ronald Reagan was so watered down that if I did not already know Reagan was a champion of free markets, competition, and limited government intervention I would have no idea why he is held in great esteem by anyone. It really is a shame that one of the greatest stories ever told about American economic recovery is being overlooked by those who have pledged to lead us to a new dawn and to tell the truth in an era of doubt about the future while they brush the truth about our predicament under the rug.
Perhaps my confusion about what is being said is a matter of semantics. After more than twenty minutes of talking about himself in his acceptance speech, Romney did brush by simplification of regulation as one of the five points in his plan. But the problem I have in identifying that with what I was looking for is that the entire mess we’ve been through was a regulatory boondoggle with contributions from out of control Government Sponsored Enterprises and too much discretion on the part of the central bank. There was too much government, too much corruption and too much central planning leading to misallocation of resources of epic proportions and the left hand not knowing what the right hand was doing. We cannot do better by trying to coordinate government instead of neutering it. Therefore, I don’t understand what Romney is talking about because he didn’t put it in terms that leave little doubt that we have learned the right lessons from the resulting nightmare. If he had, it would have helped to explain how we got to where we are and why Obama has been a complete failure dealing with the crisis; the wrong man for the job. And he could have done it without pointing fingers, if that is what he is trying to avoid given that Republicans were just as much responsible for the mess as Democrats.
I hope down in the deepest parts of my soul that Romney is simply trying to avoid being put in a position of defending principles he isn’t educated enough about to do so effectively. But he needs to get a crash course or perhaps read Milton Friedman’s Capitalism and Freedom while on the campaign bus, and he needs to do it with expediency. It is a very quick read and covers most of the basic points of economic freedom. There is also the “Free to Choose” video series that would help. If even that is too much for him, I am sure there are plenty of Reaganites around who would be happy to write his speeches for him, and plenty of people who would be willing to read the book to him. Maybe he could try to get Thomas Sowell to go along with him. Anything would be better than the superficial, lukewarm amalgamation of fluff he’s been spouting lately while trying to make this election about himself instead of about us.
I am getting on Romney’s case exactly because this election is about what the USA is to become, and it impacts every man, woman and child here now in addition those yet to arrive or to be born. It is about things that are bigger than just one person and certainly bigger than Romney himself. I don’t want to hear about Romney slaying wild beasts with the jawbone of an ass to protect widows and orphans. It does nothing for me, nothing for my son, and nothing for the country in general. I don’t care if he is moral in his personal life. He could have been 5x married with several children, all different mothers, for all I care. The only thing I care about is whether he will be instrumental in putting us on a sound economic footing well into the future that cannot be accomplished if it is based on simply rearranging the deckchairs on the Titanic. But he isn’t talking about things that matter, like economic freedom, and so I wonder just exactly what it is about if not about that.