NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

How the Government's Unconstitutional Actions Hurt the 99 Percent

November 27, 2012

Years of economic growth have been the result of economic freedom. However, coercive government policies threaten to limit economic freedom, thereby increasing the power of political elites and hurting the poor and working classes, say Ilya Shapiro and Carl G. DeNigris of the Cato Institute.

What is needed are principles that adhere to the rule of law. Instead, the government has pursued unconstitutional actions that threaten the rule of law and economic growth. The government's disregard for the Constitution has resulted in a loss of jobs, economic decline, and a worse situation for those living in poverty.

In the past decade, the United States has seen several new laws and regulations that have curtailed economic freedom, including:

  • The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
  • Bailouts such as the Troubled Asset Relief Program and those for General Motors and Chrysler.
  • The Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 and the Consumer Protection Act of 2010.
  • Housing policies that distort markets and lead to a constrained housing supply and lower housing quality.

Many of these policies are well-intentioned and are passed with high hopes. However, these acts do little to create incentives for economic growth and instead generate perverse incentives and unintended consequences.

Source: Ilya Shapiro and Carl G. DeNigris, "Occupy Pennsylvania Avenue How the Government's Unconstitutional Actions Hurt the 99%," Drake Law Review, November 14, 2012.


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