Sam Carpenter on Government Regulation and the Free Market

“In his first inaugural address, President Ronald Reagan said, ‘In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.’ This is true in Oregon today more than ever.”

Over the years, Oregon has devolved from a business state into a regulatory state. Rogue agencies, empowered by a progressive far-left controlled legislature, have usurped the free market and taken control of far too much of our freedom to own and operate a business. Oregon is ranked the sixth-worst state to own a small business. As noted by Forbes, Oregon burdens small businesses with: excessive family leave mandates, larger energy regulatory burdens, stricter land use regulations, and, higher unemployment insurance costs. And after the 2017 legislative session, you can add increased health insurance costs, too. And now, by executive order, Kate Brown has added massive environmental and “green” energy mandates to new construction. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. When you add up all the applications, permits, inspections, evaluations, licenses, fees, and regulations required to open and maintain a business, you can see why so many employers are fleeing the state. Government is choking business.

Meanwhile, across the nation, Americans in most other states are experiencing the economic boom that comes from reduced government regulation and taxation. President Trump and the Republican Congress are leading the way with drastically reduced government obstruction – and in Red States, governors and legislatures are following suit. The free market provides opportunity for new business, and competition drives businesses towards improved performance and lower costs. Businesses grow and make profits. Workers gain higher wages, job security, and benefits. Consumers gain more plentiful goods and services, with greater selections, and lower prices. Moreover, improving economies mean less demand for social services such as Medicaid and Food Stamps, meaning government can lower taxes thanks to reduced spending. The entire community benefits. Yet Oregon lags behind.

We must begin the task of dismantling the bureaucracy that gets in the way of business growth and prosperity. Departments will be reined in, and no new administrative rules will be written without at least two others repealed. Agencies that are outdated and no longer serve a legitimate need will be reduced or outright abolished. Punitive taxes and fees will be reduced. Massive overhaul of state government and slashing of burdensome regulations and costs will bring jobs and opportunities back to Oregon.

“President Calvin Coolidge told us, ‘The chief business of the American people is business. They are profoundly concerned with producing, buying, selling, investing and prospering in the world.’ But Oregon has taken too much business away from the hard working people Oregon.