They say if you build a better mousetrap, the world will beat a path to your door. But some folks don’t even try to build the mousetrap. Instead, they beat a path to Washington for special favors.
When someone builds a better product they deserve to do well financially. Their hard work and smarts make our lives better. The more lives they improve, the more they make. That’s the beauty and the fairness of the free market system.
Compare that with a system in which you get rich by convincing someone in power to subsidize your business or hobble the competition. That destroys the free market system that has made our country the richest in the world. But it gives Congress a lot more power when they can make some businesses winners and others losers. It’s how incumbent politicians raise so much money.
Avondale Industries, a Louisiana corporation, was worried that a merger of two competitors would put them at a competitive disadvantage. Every member of the Louisiana delegation to Congress urged the government to block the merger except one, Rep. John Cooksey. Dr. Cooksey took a pledge to stay in office no more than 3 terms. Not obsessed with his own career as a politician, he can concentrate on doing the right thing. “I want Avondale to be successful because they have a good product,” he said. “I don’t want them to be successful because they are being propped up by politicians.”
We need more citizen legislators who will do the right thing and protect everybody’s equal rights under the law. In politics, that’s the better mousetrap.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.