RSC Members in the Media
Rep. Jordan Op-ed: Jobs Through Growth Act: Aspiration Replaces Envy
Rep. Jim Jordan (OH-04)
President Obama gave a speech in Osawatomie, Kansas, the other day, allegedly about fairness for the middle class. His actual argument, however, reveals another message entirely. It boils down to the notion that America isn’t fair because successful people like him get to keep too much of what they earn.
That’s not a message of fairness. It’s a sermon of envy.
It’s also a classic case of misdirection. The middle class has suffered in recent years, but the 315,000 people who gave up on finding a job last month can’t be blamed on unfairness. That heartbreaking event resulted directly from the policies President Obama champions day after day.
The 2009 stimulus package that he and Joe Biden said would jump-start our economy … didn’t. And if the stimulus did work, why is the President still talking about Social Security/payroll tax reductions and prolonging unemployment benefits?
Or take the 4 million jobs Nancy Pelosi promised would be created by the health care takeover. That didn’t happen either.
What did happen? Ask the small businesses. The Obama administration has cost our economy billions of dollars by imposing one regulation after another, even as small-business owners in a recent Gallup survey named government regulations as their biggest problem.
The Osawatomie narrative says the middle class can’t make it unless the federal government targets the wealthy, suffocates small business, and puts our children deeper into debt. I just don’t agree.
Americans are built for aspiration, not envy. More than any other people in history, we are blessed with opportunities to pursue happiness, to have a dream and chase it down. The problems arise when Washington stops encouraging free and open competition, and starts trying to dictate outcomes.
While President Obama seems more concerned with his own job than anyone else’s, conservatives in the House of Representatives are advancing some bold ideas that can have a real, positive impact on our economy.
Whenever I ask my constituents in Ohio if they want to throw out the current tax code and start over, just about every hand goes up.
HR 3400, the Jobs Through Growth Act lets you do just that. Under this plan proposed by the Republican Study Committee, families, individuals and small businesses paying the personal income tax can scrap the current code for one that’s simpler, flatter and fairer. Imagine how easy filing your taxes would be with just two rates (15% and 25%), equal and generous deductions for you and your dependents, and nothing else to get confused about.
To keep jobs from moving overseas, we’ll reduce the business tax rate from 35% to 25%, and level the playing field by eliminating loopholes. We encourage companies to bring money made in other countries back into the U.S. economy, so it’s creating jobs here at home. And we help small businesses, family farms and investors by repealing the Death Tax, the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) and the investment tax on inflation.
The Jobs Through Growth Act also tackles the onslaught of red tape. It calls a time-out on new regulations that impose significant costs on the economy. Small businesses would be allowed to opt out of rules imposed since the beginning of the recession. Going forward, federal bureaucrats would have to consider any new rule’s impact on small businesses and get approval from Congress and the President for all major regulations.
That’s a prescription for more jobs and more accountability.
Tearing down government barriers to energy production is another key component. Americans will gain better access to their energy resources with less frivolous litigation, and the unlocking of more areas for exploration both on and offshore. We go after red tape, mandates and prohibitions that artificially increase the cost of fuel. And the Keystone pipeline gets a green light, bringing with it tens of thousands of jobs and a more stable supply of energy.
In short, this is a plan to create jobs by growing the economy, not the government.
The opposite route—the route chosen by President Obama—inevitably leads to failures such as Solyndra and speeches such as Osawatomie. Crony capitalism and the politics of envy are features of the Big Government system, not bugs.
In my experience, most Americans aren’t interested in the politics of envy. We aren’t interested in bailouts, handouts, or carve-outs for cronies.
What we want is a chance to take our best shot without the government standing in the way. We want a system that rewards merit instead of punishing success. And if we fail, we expect to pick ourselves up and try again.
If President Obama truly wants Americans to have a “fair shot” at success, he should embrace the Jobs Through Growth Act.
Online: Human Events