We may be enduring serious economic problems, but the can-do attitude of former President Ronald Reagan and former U.K. Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher — along with their policies — would go a long way toward making things better, says John Tamny, editor of Real Clear Markets.
"Government is a problem today, and it's the source of relatively slow economic growth for both countries," he writes
. "Taxes are too high, regulations are too intrusive, trade could be freer." Government spending also is a problem.
Then there's the issue of leadership.
"Barack Obama and David Cameron don't exactly remind us of Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher. Life and economic opportunity could surely be better, and they would be if individuals like Reagan and Thatcher were running the proverbial show," Tamny argues.
But there's good news too. Reagan and Thatcher confronted much bigger problems than their counterparts today, he maintains. "Reagan and Thatcher would mock what has so many so pessimistic today."
As for Obama, while he claims that low-income Americans work just as hard as their wealthy counterparts, that simply isn't true, says Stephen Moore
, a distinguished visiting fellow at The Heritage Foundation.
"Yes, many people in poor households heroically work very hard at low wages to take care of their families, no doubt about that," he and Heritage Foundation research associate Joel Griffith write in The Washington Times.
"Yet the average poor family doesn’t work nearly as much as the rich families do. And that’s a key reason why these households are poor."
Census Bureau data show that for every hour worked by those in a low-income household, those in a wealthy household toil five hours.
"The idea that the rich are idle bondholders who play golf or go to the spa every day while the poor toil isn’t accurate," Moore and Griffith explain.
"The finding that six out 10 poor households have no one working at all is disturbing. Since they have no income from work, is it a surprise they are poor?"
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