Twenty-somethings in America–the “millennial” generation–by and large can be categorized as politically active, socially left-leaning, and entrepreneurial. Alarmingly for conservatives, they share a trust in the government’s ability to solve our nation’s problems. According to the Pew Research Center, they are “the only age group in which a majority said the government should do more to fix problems.”
Why do young people trust the government to fix problems? In part because of the unhealthy nexus between big government and big business, The Heritage Foundation’s Matt Grinney explains:
Whether it’s through favorable regulations or loan guarantees, targeted tax breaks, or noncompetitive contracts, the government-granted privilege that results from this crooked marriage undermines the public’s faith in both government and business.
And when neither Washington nor Wall Street can be trusted as legitimate, people tend to prefer state control to an unfettered market.
Distrust drives more government, and more government fosters distrust. How can this vicious cycle be broken? Grinney tells us all hope is not lost:
With government spending at an all-time high and a federal bureaucracy that has expanded dramatically under President Obama, the failure of big government to deliver on its big promises becomes clearer each year.
Those who support free enterprise and limited government must tap into the entrepreneurial spirit of the Missoula Millennials, explaining the difference between big business and free markets and refuting the left’s common refrain that one must choose between only two options: government or absolute individualism.
Do you think young Americans can recognize the failures of big government?