Austin Hill

A new poll shows that 73% of Americans think our country is on the wrong track.

Are you one of the seventy-three percenters?

The poll from Reuters/Ipsos Public Relations was conducted between August 4 and August 8. Given the turmoil over the federal government “debt deal,” the downgrade of federal government debt, and the dramatic shifts in the global stock markets during this period, it’s not surprising that the “wrong track” figure leaped ten percentage points – up from 63% - compared to the same poll conducted exactly one month prior.

What was a bit surprising, however, was that this relatively high percentage of Americans reported “wrong track” status for the country, despite the fact that there were slightly more registered Democrats surveyed than there were registered Republicans. Given that Democrat ideology rules the U.S. Senate and the White House, it would make sense that registered Democrats in America would be more pleased with the leadership of their fellow Democrats who hold elective office.

But if the United States is on the wrong track – if our nation has truly lost its way - then a couple of other questions should follow: A) what is the “right track” for America? And B) How will we know when we’re “on” it?

Rather than try to quickly answer these two questions, I’m suggesting that we all should first contemplate several other questions. As the title of a famous sales training book once noted, “questions are the answers” – so here are a couple that can help move the process forward:

Who manages wealth the best – private individuals and groups, or politicians and government bureaucrats? For most of my adult life – that is, since the days of the Reagan presidency - the United States federal government has been fairly respectful of every American’s right to create, and possess monetary wealth, and has mostly avoided being punitive towards the wealthiest in society.

Additionally, our government’s leadership has been fairly accepting of the notion that when Americans are permitted to keep more of their own wealth, rather than less of it, they usually do productive things with it that ultimately benefit the overall economy. Even Democrat President Bill Clinton’s Council of Economic Advisors noted in 1994 that "It is undeniable that the sharp reduction in taxes in the early 1980s was a strong impetus to economic growth."

Austin Hill

Austin Hill is an Author, Consultant, and Host of "Austin Hill's Big World of Small Business," a syndicated talk show about small business ownership and entrepreneurship. He is Co-Author of the new release "The Virtues Of Capitalism: A Moral Case For Free Markets." , Author of "White House Confidential: The Little Book Of Weird Presidential History," and a frequent guest host for Washington, DC's 105.9 WMAL Talk Radio.