Unleashing the power of capitalism on talk radio
I have the unfortunate tendency to sometimes listen to rightwing radio while I drive. On morning news shows and during the afternoon bouts of Sean Hannity I subject myself to, I often hear the phrase “unleash the entrepreneurial spirit of capitalism” though sometimes it’s “un-harness” and sometimes it’s “power” but you get the gist. If I watched Fox News, I’m sure I’d hear the same boilerplate cycled endlessly in the 24-hour laundromat that is cable news.
Apparently unleashing capitalism’s super powers requires that we lower taxes and lift the regulatory burden that the current administration has imposed upon us. This in spite of the fact that Obama has actually lowered taxes and even opposed sensible environmental regulations. I often wonder if Republicans think that if we hit that sweet spot of no taxes at all we’d reach some capitalistic state of perfection, where our entrepreneurial spirit is so unleashed we no longer need taxes to pay for national defense. Our entrepreneurs would be so bad-ass they’d deflect invading forces through sheer innovation alone.
Observation: regulations are always job-killing, entrepreneur-slaying burdens. Also, regulations are pointless because clever entrepreneurs will always find a way around them. Something isn’t clicking here.
But I digress. I’m a pro-market guy. I think markets are best left as unfettered as possible – but that doesn’t mean entirely unfettered. There’s a strong case for environmental and safety regulations. Licensing and zoning laws are more problematic. Again, it really depends on what and how something is regulated, and why.
I also can see how a lower corporate tax could help drive investment in jobs here in America. But I’d want to replace it with a soul-destroying progressive tax scheme that was both far more progressive, with many more tiers in the upper brackets, and that netted much, much more revenue than we gather right now. And I’d want to use that revenue to pay for soul-destroying, capitalist crushing programs like universal healthcare – which reminds me, apparently the Affordable Care Act is also destroying jobs and the economy in spite of its not having been implemented yet.
In any case, this new jobs plan from the president seems entirely reasonable, if entirely too small, to me. It might not ‘unleash the power of capitalism’ but I don’t think the Republican plan to keep lowering taxes on the wealthy and keep slashing services for the poor will unleash that either. And yet, on good compromises such as ending the corporate tax and replacing it with a more progressive income tax, or replacing a portion of the payroll tax with a carbon tax, the compromise of increased spending and tax cuts put forth in the American Jobs Act is probably dead on arrival.
Fortunately, I know how to unleash the power of capitalism: dragons!