Larry Elder

According to the FDIC, in the almost two-year period of 2007 and 2008, 15 banks failed. Similarly, during Clinton's last two years in office, 1999 and 2000, 15 banks also failed. In the recession-free years of 1988 and 1989, there were 1,004 bank failures. And since the Great Depression, the average number of yearly bank failures has been 94.

This exposes the failure of capitalism!

What do you say we actually try capitalism, where private actors reap rewards and assume the risk? "Capitalism," says Kenneth Minogue, professor emeritus at the London School of Economics, "is what people do if you leave them alone." People want "hands off" until, that is, they want "hands on." People want homes, many preferring that option even when renting may be more prudent. Many want rent control to shield them from leasing at fair market rates. Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama promises "world-class" education -- with taxpayers paying for it. And the federal government, in dramatic contradiction with the limited-government intention of the Constitution, involves itself in health care, guaranteeing private-sector retirement accounts, disaster relief, welfare, unemployment compensation benefits, retirement benefits, etc.

The Federal Reserve Bank, in effect, prints money to pay for things that voters demand -- but their taxes cannot cover. The proposed bailout of financial institutions enables the Fed to create hundreds of billions of dollars out of thin air. The cost is greater inflation -- a stealth tax on us all.

Government, meanwhile, grows and grows.

In 1930, before Franklin Delano Roosevelt's New Deal, taxpayers paid about 12 percent of their income to all three levels of government -- state, local and federal. Today we pay approximately 40 percent -- even more if you attach a value to unfunded mandates, such as those issued by agencies such as OSHA.

So, yes, our recent financial turmoil does suggest failure -- a failure to truly practice capitalism and a failure to accept and believe in the value, appropriateness and morality of a limited government and maximum personal responsibility.


Larry Elder

Larry Elder is a best-selling author and radio talk-show host. To find out more about Larry Elder, or become an "Elderado," visit www.LarryElder.com.