"The natural progress of things is for liberty to yield and government to gain ground."
Thomas Jefferson, 1788
Carlsbad, CA (PRWEB) February 21, 2012
In an interview that transcended many topics from the political spectrum to the 1960 World Series, Bill Cima and Mike Rosen had a most informative give and take last Tuesday on Valentine’s Day. The basis of the discussion was Cima’s new book, “Less Government, More Future,” subtitled, “The Historical Case to Unleash Economic Freedom and Create a Millennium of Greatness for America.”
Bill Cima wrote “Less Government, More Future” because he believes many Americans do not understand the political spectrum or the economic consequences of actions proposed by politicians. If asked to construct the political spectrum, Cima feels few Americans would get it right. Most would respond with some vague notion of communism and socialism on the left, dictatorships on the right and democracy in the middle. As Bill noted in the Rosen interview, this is incorrect, since it is simply a sprinkling of nations with no underlying parameter upon which the spectrum is based. Both extremes of that spectrum have dictatorial governments, for example, which are quite similar, yet the extremes of any spectrum should be vastly different.
The size and power of government is the only single characteristic of government that can be used to discriminate between all governments, that has stood the test of time, and that lies at the heart of nearly every contentious issue between the right and the left over the past 3000 years. Cima pointed to several contemporary examples of this, such as Obamacare, the Financial Reform Bill, the 2010 lame duck session Internet Bill and the not yet passed Cap and Trade Bill. All of these were objected to by the right for the identical reason they were supported by the left: they expand government. The political spectrum, then, is a continuum of the size and power of government.
Those on the right favor less government and free market solutions while those on the left favor more government and governmental solutions. Hence, Cima notes that moving left, governments grow in size and power until reaching totalitarianism at the extreme far left, while moving right, governments decrease in size and power until arriving at a government so small and emasculated that the result is anarchy on the extreme far right. All despotic governments; such as communism, monarchy, oligarchy, facism and other totalitarian systems; reside on the far left. Since it takes a large and powerful government to rule in a dictatorial fashion, it is impossible to have a dictatorship on the far right where government is limited.
The discussion then turned to freedom. As Cima pointed out, there is no freedom under anarchy on the extreme far right or under totalitarianism on the extreme far left. Under anarchy, If laws do not exist or if they cannot be enforced, freedom cannot exist. Under totalitarianism, government can, and oftentimes does, invade and control all aspects of business and personal lives, resulting in no real freedom. To determine where freedom does exist, Cima began with maximum freedom, after first noting that only government has the size and power to take away freedoms on a national level and does so innately with every new socialistic or regulatory advancement. Therefore, maximum freedom is at that point well right of center where government is smallest in size, but still effective. That is, taking a step or two in from the far right would result in a government that can defend the nation, enforce the laws, provide some infrastructure, facilitate commerce, provide minimally for the truly needy and deliver the mail. This, then, is the point at which both personal and economic freedoms are maximized.
Cima went on to show that this is also the point of maximum economic vitality and that progressive movement to the left from that point reduces economic freedom, GDP (gross domestic product) rate of growth and dims the luster of the nation’s future. Citing numerous economic studies to determine the optimal size of government for the United States, Cima presented data that placed the optimal level of total government spending (federal, state and local combined), at 23 percent of GDP, indicating that at 44 percent of GDP in 2010 and 40 percent in 2011, the government of the United States is nearly twice its optimal size.
In 1994, Gerald Scully, economist, University of Texas, performed one of the more comprehensive studies on the optimal size of government, finding that oversized government has caused the United States to suffer higher unemployment rates, lower economic growth rates and less opportunity. In fact, he found that at the optimal size of government, the United States economy would be growing at a rate of 60 percent greater than its present rate. Further, this increased economic expansion from 1949, the last year in which total government spending was 23 percent of GDP, to 1989, for example, would have resulted in higher tax revenues (at the lower tax rates) of over $11 trillion—enough to fund all of the wars and social programs with no deficits--and would have provided an additional $750,000 of income per family over that period.
Mike Rosen then took the conversation to the 1960 World Series, which the New York Yankees lost to the Pittsburgh Pirates, even though they outscored the Pirates by 55 to 27 over the course of 7 games. Cima writes about this in “Less Government, More Future” as part of discussion on attitude and how the degradation of attitude by socialism is in large part why socialism is a utopian myth. Rosen adroitly noted that having to win the best of 7 games, rather than just scoring the most runs over seven games, is a system analogous to the electoral college. The low scoring, slim margin victories of the Pirates were protected from being overwhelmed by the high scoring wins of the Yankees. Similarly, a state such as Wyoming with three electoral votes (1 representative and 2 senators), is somewhat protected from being swamped by the more populous states like California, which has 53 representatives, yet still has only 2 senators for a total of 55 electoral votes. Hence, Wyoming’s three electoral votes carry more weight relative to the population of Wyoming than do the 55 electoral votes of California relative to its population.
Much more was discussed in this very enlightening and entertaining interview, which can be heard in full by visiting:
and clicking on the “Recent Events” tab in the top menu.
Also, “Less Government, More Future” can be ordered on that site, as well as:
Bill Cima feels that the discussions in his interview with Mike Rosen substantiate why every American needs to read “Less Government, More Future” prior to the 2012 elections.