The terrific new web publication Opportunity Lives stresses real-life success stories of conservative policies, or of people fruitfully putting into effect principles valued by conservatives. Here is my first column for them — about why conservatives should party like it’s 1999.
It starts like this:
If only we could party like it was 1999.
That was the year in which the last great wave of conservative domestic-policy reforms was fully in place, but before renewed spending indiscipline wreaked havoc. It was a year in which the economy boomed (4.7 percent growth, 4.2 percent unemployment) with low inflation (2.2 percent), poverty rates (under 12 percent) nearing historic lows and the federal government running a $126 billion annual surplus.
And it all came about specifically because of a conservative Congress’s reforms from 1995 through 1997 — reforms that perhaps can’t be perfectly copied 20 years later, but from which lessons and examples can be re-applied for today’s circumstances….