Salazar Wants Economic Controls, Personal Liberty

The following article by Linn and Ari Armstrong originally was published October 1 by Grand Junction Free Press.

Mainly we want to talk about Congressman John Salazar. However, one bit of news regarding Ken Buck’s campaign for U.S. Senate is so extraordinary that we must briefly address it.

In our last column, we hammered Buck for endorsing Amendment 62, which would, among many other nefarious things, ban the birth control pill. We are pleased to note that, since the publication of that column, Buck has withdrawn his endorsement of the measure. He told the Denver Post that he didn’t realize it would ban common forms of birth control.

There are some who disingenuously condemn any politician who changes his mind. While we are the last to endorse shifting one’s opinions to conform to public sentiment, we strongly encourage politicians to reevaluate their positions in light of fact-based reasoning. All of us can make mistakes. The right move is to recognize a mistake and correct it, and we respect Buck for doing so in this case.

We’ve always thought Buck was the right candidate to help restore fiscal sanity in D.C. By distancing himself from the insanity of Amendment 62, Buck signals that he’s more interested in reining in out-of-control spending than he is in trying to run our personal lives.

Unfortunately, while Congressman Salazar would leave us free in the personal sphere, he has promoted President Obama’s economic controls and big-spending programs.

We asked Salazar some tough questions, and he responded with some thoughtful answers. We appreciate that. Indeed, his answers are so thorough that we can’t do them justice here; please see for his complete comments.

We like Salazar’s general approach to church-state issues: “I believe one of the greatest threats to our religious freedom is for the State to attempt to favor one faith over another, or impose undue restraints on an individual’s freedom to worship.”

However, Salazar is simply wrong when he claims that “Church-State issues have been minimal.” What about faith-based welfare? Or tax-funded abortion? Or prayer and creationism in tax-funded classrooms?

We’re pleased to see that Salazar supports civil unions (though not marriage) for gay couples. He supports stem-cell research. He also replied, “Although I am personally opposed to abortion, I support a woman’s right to choose.”

We only wish Salazar would show some consistency. He thinks the choice about whether to get an abortion “should not be made by legislators,” but by individuals. It’s too bad he doesn’t trust individuals to make their own economic decisions, too.

True, Salazar voted against the $700 billion bailout under President Bush. However, he voted for the $787 billion stimulus package under Obama. What explains the seeming contradiction?

Salazar said he opposed the “bailout of Wall Street” because he was “concerned about using taxpayer dollars to bailout those who gambled recklessly with investors’ money.”

Okay, then why did he gamble with people’s money with the Obama stimulus? He said, “It was critical that Congress passed a stimulus package early last year to put a floor under an economy that was in a free fall.” But that is just balderdash inspired by British charlatan economist John Maynard Keynes.

In reality what Salazar voted for was legalized theft. All his split vote tells us is that he’s a man of party, not of principle. His only concern was who was doing the looting.

The principles of a sound economy have always been the same: a free market, full protection of individual rights (including rights to keep the product of one’s labor), and a government that otherwise leaves people free to act on their own judgment and associate voluntarily.

Federal politicians are the ones who put the economy in “free fall” in the first place by promoting risky loans and easy money. Salazar’s “stimulus” vote merely added new layers of destructive federal controls.

Salazar also voted for ObamaCare, and for that we can never forgive him. As the health bill unfolds over the coming years, it will result in more forced wealth transfers via manipulated health insurance premiums, politically induced demand for more “free” health care leading to skyrocketing costs, and bureaucratic rationing.

Do not let anyone tell you that ObamaCare was necessary to correct the failures of the free market. There has been no free market in health care for many decades. All of the problems involving health care and especially health insurance leading up to ObamaCare can be traced directly to decades of federal controls. (See the essay by Dr. Paul Hsieh and Lin Zinser at All Salazar accomplished was to again add more layers of destructive federal controls.

We think it’s time to elect members of Congress who understand the need for economic liberty and who will fight to achieve it.



Anonymous October 2, 2010 at 10:54 AM
“Buck has withdrawn his endorsement of the measure. He told the Denver Post that he didn’t realize it would ban common forms of birth control.”

Sigh….another politican who does not pay attention.
(Some have solid research staff to brief them.)

Keith Sketchley

Anonymous October 29, 2010 at 5:12 PM
Salazar no more believes in individual liberty than he does in economic liberty – as you point out, he believes only in the party line. None of these issues you cite as “personal liberty” are ones which are held strongly by Salazar – they are simply the party’s position. Salazar DOES believe in one more thing – the importance of the power and wealth of the Salazar family. Thus, he is no different than any other Tranzi, from Prince Charles and Otto von Hapsburg to Al Gore and the Kennedy family.