The equal liberty agenda – Twin Cities

2021-01-13 02:20:25 –

It’s possible that you didn’t get everything you wanted in 2020. If you were a supporter of Donald Trump, your man wouldn’t win. If you are progressive, you did not see the blue waves you promised. Moderate gained more polarization. Almost no libertarian candidates were obtained. But, as we do, it is true that federal, state, and local policymakers can find a common ground, motivation is key, and give voters more of what they want. ..

The secret is to find an agenda that appeals to all these sensibilities. Believe it or not, it does exist.

Let’s call it the “equal freedom agenda”. This is a policy aimed at giving the blessings of America to all people equally. It addresses the progressive itching to eradicate inequality, the conservative ambition to make America great and rekindle the 1776 idea that almost everyone wanted more freedom and dignity. ..

First, fight the welfare of the company.

Each year, states and provinces spend about $ 95 billion on corporate grants. Some politicians may say it differently, but this money does not benefit the community that provides it. Instead, it gives wealthy and connected privileges at the expense of democratic and free market ideals, encouraging businesses to favor politicians rather than customers.

Governments should promote the general welfare of all, not special interests. Our social safety nets need to catch people, not the failed companies that employ them. This is not just a good government. It’s good economics. If the states and provinces mutually agree to stop subsidizing private companies, they can reduce taxes for everyone or increase funding for public services that benefit us all.

Second, eliminate regulations that contribute to economic inequality.

Not long ago, proud progressives like Ralph Nader, Jimmy Carter and Ted Kennedy were enthusiastic deregulators. They understood that bad regulation protects consumers from competition, not from harm. They saw regulations being armed, for example, to keep entrepreneurs out of step, raise costs for rivals, and even promote price cartels.

Thanks to its resources and political organizations, established businesses have a great deal of influence over regulators and often have an advantage over consumers and public interest advocates. This phenomenon is well documented, but some of the best evidence comes from the actions of industry players themselves.

Go to the state capital where vocational licenses are being discussed. Nine out of ten, it’s the industry leaders who drive regulation, usually protecting their position, but not consumer supporters. The license is ripe for reform. Research reveals that it raises prices, keeps vulnerable people out of work, and does little to improve the quality and security of service.

Third, we will discuss policies regarding criminal justice reform.

We know the names: Breona Taylor, George Floyd, Freddie Gray, Eric Garner, Michael Brown. Their lives were just as important as all their lives. Moreover, their tragic story seems to fit the pattern. In a thorough review of the evidence, The Washington Post’s Radley Barco said: “(W) e has systems and institutions that produce racially different results, regardless of the intentions of the people who work in them.”

Can you admit that the system isn’t working well, while admitting that the majority of executives are honest and decent? Then, beyond the divisive and useless debate about whether police officers are good or bad, we can focus on constructive questions: what needs to be changed?

Will it help reduce the mountain of nonviolent crimes that can arrest people? Remember that the quarrel with Eric Garner’s choking began with the sale of cigarettes in bulk. Will it help demilitarize the police? Or will executives be freed from forcing minor traffic violations or working as social workers? Do I need to eliminate the limited immunity? Do you need a body camera? Would you like to move to more localized policing? A strike clause in a union contract that protects really bad cop? Do you want to end the confiscation of civil property? Do you want to stop issuing “Get out of the Jail Free Card”?

Asking these questions should not be controversial. Conservatives in particular are concerned about the overkill of the government and should ask them.

Most Americans can trace their intellectual heritage back to the great liberal traditions that grew from the Enlightenment. It emphasized the inherent values ​​of every individual, sound skepticism about power, and a belief in check and balance.

We do not agree with everything. Fine. But if we really care about a better world, we can work together to improve it. The agenda of equal freedom can do that.

Matthew Mitchell is a Senior Research Fellow at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University and Director of the Equal Liberty Initiative. He wrote this for the Tribunnews service.

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