Forbes hit piece on Justin Amash: Rep. Justin Amash's 'Libertarianism' Will Likely Disappoint LibertariansSubmitted by fonzdrew on Mon, 03/03/2014 - 18:12
Recently I had the chance to see Rep. Justin Amash (R – Michigan) speak during a trip down to Florida. Known as one of the few libertarians in Congress, I approached his talk with excitement.
Figure Amash has been vocal in the verbal and legislative sense about NSA overreach, and then he’s rather famously known for consulting the Constitution ahead of every vote. The Constitution greatly limits the power of the federal government, and Amash’s consultation of it speaks to a politician who properly believes much federal government activity obnoxiously exceeds the strict limits set by our founding document.
Of course, it was Amash’s sterling reputation as a strict libertarian that made his talk a bit of a disappointment. If the fact that he looked down and read most of the speech can be ignored, his questionable economic views cannot be. Most libertarians would have been puzzled by the talk, and probably discouraged.
Indeed, it was hard to watch him read the speech without concluding that Amash is the latest in a long line of small-government talking Republicans fully willing to let the federal government grow by leaps and bounds. Evidence supporting this claim was his fixation on budget deficits over government spending, his view that massive tax increases will be required to pay the deficits off, and his strongly held belief that a balanced budget amendment is the solution to a federal government that always seems to grow no matter the political party in power.
About budget deficits, Amash believes that absent reform meant to rein them in, our economy and country will be “brought to its knees.” Interesting there is that it would take several Rose Bowls to seat all the pundits, politicians and economists who’ve said much the same over the decades. The problem is that these dire predictions never seem to come true.
Never explained by the doomsayers of the past, and not covered by Amash in the present, is what would be so bad about a scenario whereby the federal government would have trouble covering its debts. On its face, this would bring about a positive in that the investors who buy U.S. debt would simply allocate their capital elsewhere; ideally away from government consumption.