Mandeville, LA - Exclusive Transcript - The Congress’s power is to make commerce regular, 18th Century speak: to make it free. No tariffs, taxes or impost and duties in between the several states, which did exist under the Articles of Confederation. Folks, all this is a matter of perspective here. For those of you that pine away for that fabled constitutional government that you think once existed and if we could just get back to it, we’d all live in an earthly paradise, understand what it is that you’re asking for. There will be no EPA unless you’re going to amend the Constitution to create it. There will be no FDA. General government has no authority over the manufacture of drugs. It can make the transportation of the drugs in between states legal as part of free trade. It can’t supervise how they are made. It certainly can’t supervise which ones go to market. A state can, and I would even say that a state shouldn’t do it. That, again, ought to be left up to the marketplace. Check out today's transcript for more...
Begin Mike Church Show Transcript
Mike: If it weren’t for the government doing these things, they obviously never would have been done. We never would have had a cotton gin. You never would have had Fulton steamboats. You never would have had the steam engine. Henry Ford never would have figured out the mass production assembly line. The Wright brothers never would have put an engine on a set of wings and jumped off a sand dune at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. None of that ever would have happened had it not been for government involvement. Who is it that writes these things and actually believes that this mythology can stand the test of time?
You know what’s really, really funny about all this? Many of these companies that today are the biggest performing companies were started in places where it has been made illegal to start a business today. You know them as a garage. Recall, if you’ve read Walter Isaacson’s great book called Steve Jobs. I’ve only read the first five chapters of it but I’ve read enough and I knew the story anyways. It was Jobs and Wozniak that came up with the idea of making these mail order kits where you could put these gizmos together and hook it to your telephone and get free long distance services. They figured out how to get the parts, put them together in one package, and then sell them in electronic trade magazines. They started Apple Computer in a garage.
Don Hewlett and Richard Packard, or is it Richard Hewlett and Don Packard? I forget. Hewlett and Packard started in a garage. The Wright brothers started out in a bicycle shop. Could the Wright brothers possibly have imagined that whichever one of them jumped off the sand dune at Kitty Hawk, that 30, 40 years later every American would be begging for the chance to hop aboard a supersized version of what became known as the airplane, flying coast to coast, hither and yon, to and fro?
We take all these things for granted, but these are the results of great ideas that, to my knowledge and recollection, had absolutely nothing to do with government, unless it was that government got the hell out of the way. What about Alexander Graham Bell and the telephone? What about Marconi? What about Tesla? I’ve been thinking about this for a Founding Father Films, my little business company I run when I’m not doing this radio show. There’s a great story to be told. I don’t know how many of you have read it. I’ve only read pieces of it. I actually started writing a screenplay one day but didn’t finish it. AG, did you know that Tesla sued Marconi claiming that Marconi ripped off the idea for the wireless?
AG: I had no idea, no.
Mike: Tesla is famously known as trying to figure out a way to project electricity through the air, wireless electricity. This is how you got the Tesla balls that you see. He was never able to successfully do it, but he believed that he could. While he was doing it -- I believe he started in New York. He was an immigrant, too, Tesla, and then moved out to someplace in Colorado and began his experiments. Anyway, all these things that we call inventions and great ideas today, almost all of them have one thing in common: they were the result of genius, brilliant individuals acting upon either an idea, a fancy, a dream, or responding to what they saw was a need in the marketplace. Government doesn’t create these things. Government screws it up. This is why so few powers were conferred to the general government in the Constitution. It’s why in most state constitutions, the same is true.
I don’t know where Mr. Sinegal gets all these ideas that President Obama is a small business person’s best friend. I am of the opinion and belief that the businessman is there to turn a profit. The businessman gets into business, leaves philanthropy or community life and enters business for the purpose of returning a profit on capital invested. He may make the world a better place by doing that, but he’s under no responsibility to do so. It may be in his interest to do it, but he’s under no responsibility to do it. That is a far cry different from somebody sitting in an office in a Senate office building in Washington saying, [mocking] “I say, I say, wouldn’t it be a good idea if we could figure out a way to make everybody buy, so I say everybody buy some health insurance?” Government orders resources to be used in a manner in which most private sector or most markets never would, and is therefore inefficient by definition.
The greatest thing I can tell you to read about this is to read Friedrich von Hayek’s “The Road to Serfdom.” No one has ever explained it better than Hayek, although you could read Frédéric Bastiat’s “The Law.” You could read Cantillon, great French economist, his “Economic Theories.” You could read Adam Smith’s “Wealth of Nations,” but even Smith was of the idea if we do this privately and let this thing called the invisible hand take precedence over kings and lords and earls and dukes and what have you, ordering about the ordering or resources, it turns out better. I think it does. The results of the experiments in free markets are all around us today. Those free markets were experimented in and allowed to flourish first in the United Kingdom, which is where many of these inventions and ideas, steam engine for one, came from, and then in the United States. The reason was not because the government was great. The government was great at keeping contracts valid, money sound, and interstate commerce free. That’s all it should do.
There’s an editorial in the Washington Times today, which is allegedly a conservative newspaper. Let me just read this to you. You want to talk about oxymorons, let me give you one. Washington Times editorial Representative Tom Price writing, “Regulations are choking small business engine of growth. It’s time for red-tape reduction.” Tom Price, I love you. Let’s do it. Let’s reduce that red tape. Then I read the editorial.
The cost is $1.75 trillion. That’s the price of complying with Washington red tape – and that’s not a misprint. [Mike: So far, so good. We love Tom Price. I love this guy. Let’s read paragraph two, shall we?] While the federal government has the responsibility to establish reasonable regulations to help protect the American people, federal rule-making is so costly and cumbersome that it actually impedes job creation and economic growth.
Mike: Mr. Price, and you can’t use the Commerce Clause by the way, please indicate to me in the United States Constitution where you find the authority and/or the responsibility to establish reasonable regulations to help protect the American people when it comes to the manufacture of products. As a matter of fact, Mr. Price, with all due respect, this was explicitly left out, explicitly left out of the Constitution.
As a matter of fact, Representative Price, the Constitution would not have been ratified in Virginia if someone bearing your editorial would go back in time and arrive at the New Academy of Arts and Sciences in Richmond’s Shockoe Hill, right down the street from the Swan Tavern where the Virginia ratification debate was held. If someone was to go back in time with this in their hands and read it to those about to ratify, it would have went down in flames, never would have been ratified, ever. If you’d have done the same thing in New York, never would have been ratified. Pennsylvania, no f’ing way. Maybe some of the little states ratified early because they were going, “They’re going to give us two senators? We get the same amount of senators as the big states do? Where do I sign?” No way it ever would have been ratified.
This is a fabrication of what is known as construction. Construction is what you do when you want to take a document like the Constitution and twist it and mangle it for your own maniacal purposes. We were warned about this. Jefferson warned us about this. Read Jefferson’s inaugural address and you will find the smack down that is needed to be written to, maybe sent to or transmitted to, Representative Price. I know why Representative Price has to say this, because he is a member of the House of Representin’ and he does an awful lot of regulating. He can’t say that he’s a member of an illegitimate body that illegitimately does these things, although Congressman Paul would say that. This is what happens to your fabled conservatives once they get to Mordor on the Potomac River. They become members of Sauron’s hordes. I didn’t need to read anything beyond paragraph two because I reject the premise.
If there is to be any regulation, and I think that the market is the greatest regulator, then it is going to come from the state legislatures. The Congress’s power is to make commerce regular, 18th Century speak: to make it free. No tariffs, taxes or impost and duties in between the several states, which did exist under the Articles of Confederation. Folks, all this is a matter of perspective here. For those of you that pine away for that fabled constitutional government that you think once existed and if we could just get back to it, we’d all live in an earthly paradise, understand what it is that you’re asking for. There will be no EPA unless you’re going to amend the Constitution to create it. There will be no FDA. General government has no authority over the manufacture of drugs. It can make the transportation of the drugs in between states legal as part of free trade. It can’t supervise how they are made. It certainly can’t supervise which ones go to market. A state can, and I would even say that a state shouldn’t do it. That, again, ought to be left up to the marketplace.
Do you realize how many drugs or compounds may be out of your reach today because people, maniacal men seeking an advantage over other men have paid and bought favor with legislators so that drug A will never see the light of the day in the marketplace because they can’t afford to bribe Congress or bribe the FDA or bribe someone to write a law that it’s in their favor while the competition’s drug gets out there all the time. They have to go through this testing and that testing. Oh, sure they do. What is that? All that does is makes sure that all the testing institutions and all the universities and think tanks and operations that do the testing can continue to be funded. Guess who gets to fund the testing? [mocking] “Mike, Price Waterhouse funds that, I mean SmithKline Beecham funds that.” No, they don’t. You’re funding it, all of it, whether it’s through tax incentives, tax breaks or direct subsidies. This is the sick, wicked web that hath been woven here in the land of the free and the mobile home of the brave.
End Mike Church Show Transcript