Economic Freedom Declined in United States in 2009


Source of table: online version of the WSJ article quoted and cited below.

(p. A17) The United States is losing ground to its major competitors in the global marketplace, according to the 2010 Index of Economic Freedom released today by the Heritage Foundation and The Wall Street Journal. This year, of the world’s 20 largest economies, the U.S. suffered the largest drop in overall economic freedom. Its score declined to 78 from 80.7 on the 0 to 100 Index scale.

The U.S. lost ground on many fronts. Scores declined in seven of the 10 categories of economic freedom. Losses were particularly significant in the areas of financial and monetary freedom and property rights. Driving it all were the federal government’s interventionist responses to the financial and economic crises of the last two years, which have included politically influenced regulatory changes, protectionist trade restrictions, massive stimulus spending and bailouts of financial and automotive firms deemed “too big to fail.” These policies have resulted in job losses, discouraged entrepreneurship, and saddled America with unprecedented government deficits.
. . .
The abiding lesson of the last few years is that the battle for liberty requires perpetual vigilance. President Obama professes desire to foster prosperity, environmental protection, poverty reduction and better health care. How ironic, then, that his economic proposals so consistently ignore or even undermine the one system–free enterprise capitalism–that has proven best able to achieve those goals.
Now America’s once high-flying economy is barely crawling forward. Americans deserve better, and they can do better–as soon as they reverse course and start regaining the economic freedom that made America the most prosperous country in the world.

For the full story, see:
TERRY MILLER. “The U.S. Isn’t as Free as It Used to Be; Canada now boasts North America’s freest economy.” The Wall Street Journal (Weds., JANUARY 20, 2010): A17.
(Note: the online version of the article is dated JANUARY 19, 2010.)
(Note: ellipsis added.)

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