Rep. Justin Amash on what ails us

amashRep. Justin Amash (R-MI), a libertarian, responds to President Obama’s State of the Union address:

The essential error of the Obama presidency is an unfounded belief that greater government power—in our pocketbooks, in our private lives—will make America more prosperous and free. President Obama’s faith in concentrated power was on full display in tonight’s State of the Union address.

Really, Justin Amash? Are the growing divide between rich and poor and the near $1 billion the Koch Brothers plan to spend to influence the 2016 elections not foundation enough for concern? Is our Constitutional Government, in which you have an important role, so corrupt that it can’t be trusted to act in the public interest? What if not active, effective government could resist monopoly capitalism and imperialism?

Working families feel squeezed by higher health care costs and tuition bills. Those fortunate enough to hold steady jobs haven’t seen a raise in years. They worry about their children’s future and their country’s.

Yes indeed, America is a low wage country. We need to fix that. President Obama proposed a number of measures to do just that.

The president seems to have only one answer for them: enlarge the size and scope of the federal government. To help middle-class Americans, the president demands more than $300 billion of tax hikes and a new round of stimulus spending.

As President Obama noted, and Republicans agree, eonomic recovery hasn’t reached many working families. Additional action is needed.

To rein in education costs, the president creates a federal education entitlement, the type of which led to skyrocketing tuition in the first place.

To help students pay for college seems like a better policy than jawboning about costs.

(Interestingly, some say a university education is a luxury good, subject to what Thorstein Veblen called “conspicuous consumption.”)

To fix our health care system, the president touts the same law that has caused prices to rise and stripped families of access to their doctors.

Prices were rising before Obamacare was enacted. Since it became law, the rate of increase has slowed.

To make the financial system more stable, the president threatens to veto reforms to Dodd-Frank, his law that made banks bigger than ever.

The changes to Dodd-Frank were not reforms at all, but roll-back of measures intended to prevent another Great Recession–welfare for big banks.

And to protect Americans’ privacy, he offers yet another report instead of reining in his own spies.

NSA surveillance can’t be blamed on President Obama–it existed before he was elected and doubtless will continue after his administration ends.

Higher federal taxes, more federal spending, and greater federal control of our lives haven’t worked over the past six years.

Higher federal taxes and more federal spending can’t fairly be said to be ineffective–higher taxes have scarcely been tried.

Our country is beginning to turn the corner not because of government but in spite of it. Instead of faith in Washington, let’s put faith in Americans to determine their own lives. Let’s give liberty a chance.

Leaving Americans to make the best of their situation often means they will be:

  • Cold
  • Hungry
  • Poverty stricken
  • Sick and without health insurance
  • Uneducated
  • Unemployed.

We have had enough of that; let’s not try that again. Liberty without justice isn’t enough–we must insist on Liberty and Justice for all.

© William Hungerford – February 2015

About whungerford

* Contributor at where we discuss the politics, economics, and events of the New New York 23rd Congressional District (Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Chemung, (Eastern) Ontario, Schuyler, Seneca, Steuben,Tioga, Tompkins, and Yates Counties) Please visit and comment on whatever strikes your fancy.
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9 Responses to Rep. Justin Amash on what ails us

  1. BOB McGILL says:

    OMG, did you really ask ” Is our Constitutional Government, in which you have an important role, so corrupt that it can’t be trusted to act in the public interest? ”
    and did you really say ” Prices were rising before Obamacare was enacted. Since it became law, the rate of increase has slowed. ” ? instead of 10 to 14 % increases it’s more like 24% a year.
    Now that people have to pay a deductible they aren’t going to the doctor unless it is really absolutely necessary .


  2. BOB McGILL says:

    bet the insurance companies are loving every bit of it too


  3. Anne says:

    Are you trying to say that deductibles didn’t exist prior to the ACA?


  4. pystew says:

    To Libertarians, Liberty means individuals are responsible for themselves, to pursue one’s own interests without help from others, or the need to help others. It is without interference from the government. Of course they want to use the infrastructure the government, and fellow citizens, provided

    Other people besides Libertarians believe that our country is stronger when we work together, and that Liberty, and Justice, is for all.


  5. Deb Meeker says:

    Rep. Amash seems to be confusing “freedom” for “freedom from responsibility”, and “the government” for the “government of, by, and for the people”. He, like too many other politicians, accepts his government paycheck and perks, while mandating we the people tighten our belts. Hogwash.


  6. pystew says:

    Anne, the term ‘deductible’ is nowhere in the article–either in Amash’s quotes or Williams comments. McGill is making his own talking points and trying to control the comments. Amash is putting his Libertarian spin on the President’s speech.


  7. whungerford says:

    Rep. Amash seems fond of the argument that if something can be said to have not worked, we should go back to an older idea that didn’t work rather than make improvements..


  8. josephurban says:

    One thing I have noticed about libertarians, Republicans and Tea Party fanatics. They are long on vague generalities. They love to ignore data. And they never, ever have specific solutions to real problems. They repeat the word “freedom” over as though they invented the idea. And they never mention the ultimate truth. They would be no where without society and the sacrifices of others. It is as if they have just read the abridged version of “Atlas Shrugged” (The original is too long) and cling to her childish, simplistic view of the world. Kind of cute for adolescents just learning about life. A sad state of affairs when coming from the mouths of adults.


  9. Anne says:

    Libertarians: the gentleman’s anarchists.


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