The term "free enterprise" is often used to describe America's market system.
Unfortunately, when the government sets rules and standards for the companies
in the system, the result is not free enterprise. Free enterprise is defined
by Wilson S. Johnson, President of the National Federation of Independent
Business, as "the successful marriage of personal freedom with economic
freedom". (1) With free enterprise comes competitive pricing, more wealth which
is distributed widely among the population, and small business survival--an
important trait when over 50% of America's non-government workforce is employed
by small businesses. Deregulation brings free enterprise in a sense truer than
it has existed in the past. Businesses should not be regulated by the
government.

Deregulation in the eighties has brought new meanings to industries such as
airlines, railroads, and telecomunications. Although adjustment proved
traumatic, the airline industry grew from 36 to 156 individual airlines.(2) The
result has been competitive prices, a huge web of new routes, and competitive
employee wages. In 1980, Congress got rid of rules that encouraged railroads
to keep unwanted routes, that forced prices too high to compete with truck and
barge rates, or kept prices too low to make a profit.(3) Now railway companies
are making deals with shippers at competitive rates allowing, once again, the
railroads to be an important part of America. Since the breakup of AT&T in
January 1984, almost every element of tele phoning has been open to
competition. Numerous firms have been formed boasting low long-distance rates,
car phone models, fiber-optic cable, and such. The complexity of customer's
bills and other confusing aspects of having so many different companies a re
predicted to work themselves out with time. It is obvious that deregulation
has allowed competition to evolve and thrive in industries where it had never
been allowed to.

It is obvious that the presence of many companies in the market is ben
eficial to the consumer in terms of competitive prices and creating jobs. "The
annual yield on a small savings account" has soared from 5.5 to over 9% since
1980.(4) About 80% of passengers travel by plane under a discount fare.(5) The
cost of standard telephones fell one-third between 1982 and 1983.(6) Although
the government has been allowing companies in these industries to compete, this
lift of a guiding hand should not allow companies to risk health hazards of
their consumers. Just because the a irlines are allowed to compete should not
imply the destruction of the Federal Aviation Administration's safety rules
under which airpalnes must fly, for example. Government's role in business
should be to see to it that the consumer is safe without limi ting his choices
and educated so he can make the best choices. Deregulation brings the greatest
good to the greatest number of people by allowing free enterprise to flourish
in even more of America's big industries. Free enterprise had built America
and will sustain America as a safe, educated, flourishing nation.