Americans’ fear of big government grows


The Occupy Wall Street (OWS) crowd claims to represent 99 percent of Americans in “fighting back against the corrosive power of major banks and multinational corporations.” It turns out that Americans are far less concerned about big business than OWS is; instead, they are fearful of big government.

A new Gallup poll shows that “Americans’ concerns about the threat of big government are near record-high levels.” The poll found that 64 percent of Americans consider “big government” to be the greatest future threat to the country, whereas only 26 percent fear “big business” and 8 percent “big labor” as the greatest threat.

Interestingly, even Democrats are becoming more concerned about big government. Today, 48 percent of Democrats polled view big government as the greatest threat, which is up from 32 percent in 2009.

While the poll didn’t address why Americans are more concerned about big government, I presume it’s related to the health care initiatives, business regulations and massive spending that continue to flow from the Obama administration and Congress.

This poll is just one snapshot of public opinion and, therefore, has limitations, but Americans are right to fear big government. While there are plenty of reasons to be concerned about big business and big labor, big government can lead to severe negative consequences for the economy and society.

For this reason, Sutherland supports the principle of limited government, and we hope you do, too.