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Frank Pignanelli & LaVarr Webb: Is America in decline or are her best days ahead?

Published: Sunday, June 29 2014 12:00 a.m. MDT

The president, the Congress, and the federal bureaucracy are ineffective and gridlocked because they are trying to do too much, more than is practical or prudent, more than the framers of the Constitution intended. Our country is too big and too diverse to be micro-managed from Washington. Returning responsibilities and resources to state and local governments would allow the federal government to focus on its constitutional responsibilities and to be efficient and successful.

The problem with federalism is that we have allowed the far right to capture it as an ideological issue. Mainstream Americans need to take it back as a good-governance, problem-solving issue.

We don’t need a new government structure. We just need to use the one the founders gave us.

What can be done to revive America’s can-do attitude?

Pignanelli: Despite needless regulations and a lack of credit, America is rebounding from the Great Recession. Shrinking the economic divide and restoring the American Dream can again be realized if budding entrepreneurs are allowed to flourish. Political extremists and over-intrusive bureaucrats must have greater faith in America and get out of the way.

Webb: So much is centralized in Washington, D.C., that many citizens and businesses don’t feel they control their own destinies. Almost every industry — energy development, financial services, telecommunications, agriculture and manufacturing — are controlled by Washington. And bloated government spawns crony capitalism, with the largest businesses and industries deploying armies of lobbyists to use government to protect their interests. Little guys hardly have a chance. Unleash America’s entrepreneurial spirit and watch us prosper!

Republican LaVarr Webb is a political consultant and lobbyist. Previously he was policy deputy to Gov. Mike Leavitt and Deseret News managing editor. Email: lwebb@exoro.com. Democrat Frank Pignanelli is a Salt Lake attorney, lobbyist and political adviser. Pignanelli served 10 years in the Utah House of Representatives, six years as minority leader. His spouse, D’Arcy Dixon Pignanelli, is a state tax commissioner. Email: frankp@xmission.com

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