The We the People Perspective: “The more Americans succeed without government interference, the less power the Democrats will have … to remake America into a Socialist state.” (Tim Scott, Republican Senator, South Carolina)
The Liberal World Order Perspective: “This is about the future of the Liberal World Order, and we have to stand firm. Gas prices are unacceptably high, but we have to stick with it as long as it takes.” (Brian Deese, Director of the National Economic Council for President Joe Biden.)
There is a referendum coming up in the November 2022 mid-term elections and again in the 2024 Presidential election. Will it be “We the People” as defined by the U.S. Constitution to let the peoples’ voices be heard in preserving individual liberty and prosperity. Or will it be the emerging slogan of “Liberal World Order” as defined by the current Democratic administration of Joe Biden and his fellow Progressives. “Liberal World Order” intends to override the voice of the people in favor of a centralized, federal bureaucracy. With the already increasing power, authority and an anti-American ideology, they are actively instituting a government-driven agenda into every aspect of people’s lives.
Here is what is at stake:
In every aspect of our lives, the “Liberal World Order” results in fewer freedoms with the federal government telling us what to do. The Founding Fathers write in the Declaration of Independence that freedom is granted by our Creator and are “inalienable” and “self-evident.” Those freedoms were enshrined in the Bill of Rights. While government is supposed to protect our freedom, it is also “our most dangerous enemy” according to Christopher DeMuth of the Hudson Institute. (WSJ, Jan 2021). This is why our Constitution is so sacrosanct and a guide in keeping the role of government limited and keeping politicians as representatives of the people. The Constitution is also brilliant in defining the role of the states (to provide local governance attuned to their citizens) and the role of the three branches of the Federal government (Executive, Legislative and Judicial). This structure is crucial to keep checks and balances while securing the best interests of “We the People.”
For “We the People”, there are organizations committed to preserving the U.S. Constitution, the Bill of Rights and overseeing the work of Congress to ensure our individual freedom and prosperity survive and thrive. They have even figured out how to measure how well we are doing this on a state-by-state basis. One organization that is doing just that is the Cato Institute with their recently published sixth edition of “Freedom in the 50 States.”
Here are some sobering facts on American freedom from their recent report spanning a twenty-year pattern (2000 to 2019) on how public policy affects individual freedoms economically, socially and personally:
- For the average American, freedom has declined in general due to federal encroachment on policies that states control.
- On regulatory policy, not including Obamacare, states have not sustained their freedom goals. Including Obamacare, it wiped out all gains at the state level.
- The freest states in the country significantly outpace their peers. States that have consistently done well are generally in the top ten and include New Hampshire, Florida, Nevada, Tennessee, South Dakota, Indiana, Michigan, Georgia, Arizona, and Idaho. Interesting to note that the bottom 14 states all show negative freedom scores with New York consistently at the bottom along with Hawaii, California, New Jersey, and Oregon.
- Looking at the most improved in level of freedom reflect changes in state policy attributed to decreases in government taxation, government spending and government employment as a share of the private economy. States improving the most included South Dakota, Florida, Missouri, and Michigan (jumping from 18th to 8th position).
- Looking at states losing their level of freedom, you find increased tax burden, tougher regulations on land, labor, insurance, and per capita income growth falling behind the rest of the country. States worsening in their level of freedom in 2018-2019 included Oregon, New Mexico, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and New Jersey.
- On a positive note, most state fiscal policy scores have improved with declining tax burdens and spending cuts. This has been primarily in states that have Republican dominated legislatures.
- Overall, there are positive patterns toward greater freedom with eminent domain reform, right-to-work laws, on-line gambling, gay marriage, and legalized marijuana.
It is interesting to note that this report covered the period 2000 to 2019 and, as such, would not include the Covid outbreak in March of 2020 and lockdowns throughout the states up through 2021. So, the next report from Cato will be interesting. However, the trend toward centralized federal policy mandating state policy is a dangerous trend according to Cato. Federal policy changes that displace state discretion with federal mandates (which we saw in record number during the pandemic) forced states to make changes that many did not want, and others were already making progress on their own. Therefore, federal government interference reduces the ability of federalism (states’ rights) to check government overreach and harder for citizens to find freedom by voting with their feet (moving to another state).
To learn more about the state of freedom across America, check out the Cato Institute at www.cato.org and what we can do to win for “We the People.”