Joseph Horton

It is not by chance that the United States is a wealthy country. Yes, the government was involved in such things as building roads which have helped business. However, government does not have any resources of its own. Roads were built because productive people paid taxes to pay for them. We have become a wealthy country because for most of our history we have had relatively low taxes (when rates were high there were huge loopholes), limited regulation, the rule of law, and relatively little corruption.

No one is arguing that there should be no government, or that no tax revenue should be collected. Limited government, however, provides the freedom for entrepreneurs to provide solutions to people’s problems and improve their lives. If our elected officials would in humility stop trying to engineer fairness, step back and let Americans create wealth, the middle class could thrive again.

President Obama is encouraging us to compare ourselves to those who have more. Rather than using these people as examples of how to achieve success, he is telling us it is unfair and that he can bring fairness and prosperity. Political points may be scored, but it will not improve our standard of living. If Americans succumb to the politics of envy we will be less happy and poorer for it.


Joseph Horton

Dr. Joseph J. Horton is professor of psychology at Grove City College and a researcher on Positive Youth Development with The Center for Vision & Values. Among the courses he teaches are Marriage and Family Assessment and Intervention, Child Development, Foundations of Psychological Science, and Advanced Research Methods. Dr. Horton earned his Ph. D. and master's degrees from The Pennsylvania State University with an emphasis in developmental psychology. He is particularly interested in reasoning in young children, character development in adolescents as well as marriage and the impact of marriage on children. Dr. Horton is part The Center for Research on Positive Youth Development at Grove City College. The research done by the center has been funded by the John Templeton Foundation. He serves as board chair of Pregnancy Services of Western Pennsylvania, a pro-life, Christian pregnancy help center. In his spare time, he enjoys watching college football with his family and taking his daughter to dog shows.