To the Journal editor:
Very simply put: the role of government is to preserve, protect and promote liberty.
The liberty to earn a living is preserved by investments in education. The liberty to be secure in life and property is protected by our armed forces and local law enforcement. The liberty of a truly free market is promoted by combating fraud and monopoly as well as ensuring an equal playing field for all those involved.
President Washington said, "It is important, likewise, that the habits of thinking in a free country should inspire caution in those entrusted with its administration, to confine themselves within their respective Constitutional spheres."
Those powers not explicitly granted to the federal government are reserved to the States and individuals. No remotely vague interpretation of the General Welfare Clause could be twisted to allow for the Affordable Care Act, which is neither affordable or carefully constructed.
The U.S. Supreme Court merely upheld the fed's authority to tax. I agree with the dissenters that you cannot charge a tax to maintain your liberty. In a nutshell, I can choose to opt out of ACA if I pay a tax.
There's a lot the feds can do to assist the states and individuals to reform health care. Paying down the debt to combat price inflation would help every American.
The dollar is now worth a small fraction of what it was when the Federal Reserve System was enacted in 1913. That the commodity value of a pre-1964 silver quarter could roughly buy a gallon of gas is testament to that.
Tort reform would ensure people don't get thousands of dollars of unnecessary tests to cover a doctor's legal assets.
The shutdown is a failure of our executive and legislative representatives to understand and embrace the limitations around their power.
While both have good intentions as to how to move our nation forward; both need to heed the advice of Daniel Webster: "Good intentions will always be pleaded for every assumption of authority. It is hardly too strong to say that the Constitution was made to guard the people against the dangers of good intentions. There are men in all ages who mean to govern well, but they mean to govern. They promise to be good masters, but they mean to be masters."
Pete Mackin, chairman