Gov­ern­ment in­ter­fer­ence never helps

The Washington Times Daily - - Editorial -

When the Pa­triot Act was signed into law in 2001, it was not long be­fore pro­gres­sives and lib­er­als claimed that it was un­con­sti­tu­tional. Of­ten they said things such as “Ge­orge W. Bush is not my pres­i­dent.” Now, among mas­sive protests and clear in­com­pe­tence of gov­ern­ment, this same po­lit­i­cal group claims the Oba­macare is “the law of the land,” and we are all sub­ject to it, no mat­ter our stance on the is­sue.

In 1920, as economies ad­justed to the postWorld War I cli­mate, the world ex­pe­ri­enced an eco­nomic de­pres­sion. In the United States, in the wake of hun­dreds of thou­sands of sol­diers re­turn­ing home and an econ­omy geared to­ward war­time pro­duc­tion, our gov­ern­ment ba­si­cally did noth­ing to “help” the Amer­i­can peo­ple. There were no un­em­ploy­ment ben­e­fits, no ben­e­fits for re­turn­ing vet­er­ans, no food stamps, etc. Yet this de­pres­sion ended af­ter 18 months, and we en­tered the Roar­ing ’20s, one of the most eco­nom­i­cally pros­per­ous times in U.S. his­tory. The gov­ern­ment of Great Bri­tain ba­si­cally took over the econ­omy in the face of this de­pres­sion and es­tab­lished all the so­cial-wel­fare pro­grams listed above. Great Bri­tain did not rise out of this de­pres­sion un­til 1946, the end of what we now call the Great De­pres­sion.

In the late 1920s, at the pres­sur­ing of pro­gres­sives, Pres­i­dent Hoover launched mas­sive num­bers of fed­eral pro­grams to fight home­less­ness and poverty. Fol­low­ing the in­tro­duc­tion of th­ese pro­grams, the United States fell into the Great De­pres­sion along with the rest of the world. What was our gov­ern­ment’s re­sponse this time? Pres­i­dent Roo­sevelt in­sti­tuted the largest gov­ern­ment in­ter­ven­tion into the pri­vate lives of cit­i­zens ever at­tempted by a U.S. pres­i­dent, even more so than Hoover. Econ­o­mists Harold L. Cole and Lee E. Oha­nian have said that had Roo­sevelt in­stead taken a long va­ca­tion and done noth­ing, we would have re­cov­ered from the Great De­pres­sion by 1936.

So now I ask you, what is go­ing to be the ef­fect of our gov­ern­ment tak­ing over the health care in­dus­try? JARET RO­MANO Fair­fax

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