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The Biggest Impediment to Economic Advancement: Government

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.

The U.S. economy continues its Obama administration-long hobbled limp. President Obama will be our nation's first to never, ever have even one year of 3% or higher Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth.


We are the United States of Anemia.

Why? Government. The private sector is under full-on governmental assault.

Just the federal government just last year taxed away more than $3.2 trillion. But it spent nearly $3.7 trillion, which means it borrowed the other $0.5 trillion - even more coin rendered unavailable for much better private sector use. And just federal regulations impose compliance costs of an additional $1.9 trillion.

That’s nearly $6 trillion per annum in just federal government impediment. More than one-third of our entire $17.4 trillion Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Then you add in the 50 state governments. And the 3,007 county governments. And the multitudinous city and town governments. And….

I can’t imagine why the economy isn’t roaring.

But one example of progress impediment? Government (at all levels) opposition to the petroleum drilling technique known as fracking.

Federal Judge Blocks Major Fracking Rule, Calling It ‘Contrary To Law’: “U.S. District Judge Scott Skavdahl on Tuesday…(ruled) that the federal agency’s claim that it had ‘implicit’ congressional authority for the regulations ‘lacks common sense.’”

“Lacks common sense” is a very fair assessment - and not just legally. Where fracking has occurred it has thrived on a monumental scale. (Hello, North Dakota.) And has been a fundamental component of the private sector’s fundamental transformation of not just the global oil market and the broader global economy - but geopolitics as well.


We’ve been searching for decades for a way to “end our dependence on foreign oil.” Fracking delivered it. Government didn’t deliver - it opposed the private sector doing so.

Meanwhile, what has government spent the last several decades doing to “end our dependence on foreign oil?” Wasting hundreds of billions of dollars on “green energy” (solar, wind, ethanol, etc), which is neither green nor energy - and costs exponentially more than traditional energy sources.

Renewable Energy 'Simply WON'T WORK' (Say) Top Google Engineers: “Windmills, solar, tidal - all a 'false hope', say Stanford PhDs.”

Renewable Energy: Not Cheap, Not ‘Green’

The government isn’t picking winners and losers - it’s picking losers at the expense of winners.

“Green energy” cannot exist to not-produce energy without these massive government money infusions. Even consistently bizarre Europe is beginning to get reacquainted with this reality. And thus so too is their “green energy” “industry.”

The private sector delivers results - government delivers disasters.

So when, in the pursuit of Network Neutrality, the Obama Administration power-grabbed the entire Internet - serious flags should have been raised.

In fact many were. The tech sector’s Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and we free market reality-lovers practically dislocated shoulders waving them, warning that slamming the network with so many additional regulations (and prospective taxes) would make it much harder for the Internet’s incredible growth to continue.


Let us consider the wireless web. Look on your cell phone for the little letters “4G.” As in Fourth Generation - the current, most advanced wireless network. For the last many years, wireless providers have spent lots of time and lots of money developing “5G” - the next generation, and a huge technological step forward. Much faster speeds - opening up to blossom the Internet of Things:

“(T)he network of physical devices, vehicles, buildings and other items—embedded with electronics, software, sensors, actuators, and network connectivity that enable these objects to collect and exchange data.”

Verizon aims to roll out “5G” in 2017. AT&T says it will beat Verizon to the punch (you have to love private sector completion). Other providers are working to join them as rapidly as possible (you really have to love private sector completion).

But then the Obama administration dropped its Net Neutrality anvil. Unlike Wile E. Coyote - they didn’t miss.

And with our arms in slings - we sadly, knowingly read this from across the Pond:

“On July 7, a coalition of 20 telecom companies in the continent ... put together the ‘5G Manifesto for timely deployment of 5G in Europe.’… While the document is mostly used to outline the key advantages of 5G, its purpose serves to warn governments of the potential dangers of over-regulation of the open internet, essentially arguing against intervention.


“‘The telecom Industry warns that the current Net Neutrality guidelines, as put forward by BEREC, create significant uncertainties around 5G return on investment,’ the document states. ‘Investments are therefore likely to be delayed unless regulators take a positive stance on innovation and stick to it.’”

The Left bizarrely wants to make us more like Europe. Now, in many instances, we’re worse.

There is here already so much pre-Net Neutrality money and energy inertia behind our “5G” rollout that we will get there.

But this government straightjacket absolutely jeopardizes the next, necessary, massive influxes of cash and attending effort necessary to fully form “5G” - and to create, develop and deliver whatever comes next.

Which won’t come next - because government got in the way, as we warned, as Europe’s telecom companies are warning.

The Left, still, isn’t listening.

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