Irony of ironies. Young Hungarian attending the One Young World summit in Pittsburgh is looking for ways to promote entrepreneurism and business startups in Hungary. Perhaps most of the lessons he will take away from Pittsburgh will be about how not to create a business supporting policy climate.
Five things you certainly will not want in Hungary are the drivers of the anti-business mentality that permeates the government in Pittsburgh: (1) a pro-union government and population that views profits as something to be tolerated rather than encouraged, (2) heavy government spending and taxation to support high cost government union workers, (3) artificial wage setting that forces employers to pay wages above the value of the workers’ contribution to product value, (4) a regulatory environment that favors feel good ideology at all costs and ignores any reasonable cost/benefit analysis, i.e., environmental regulations that are over the top, and (5) a belief among government officials that government directed, government subsidized and controlled development is the proper approach to economic progress.
The young Hungarian would be far better served to read about the history of Pittsburgh and western Pennsylvania covering the period when entrepreneurs built one of the strongest economies in the world and created massive fortunes, high paying jobs and tremendous population growth as people came from Hungary and all over Europe to find a better life.
Property rights, contract enforcement, individual liberty and the rule of law are the foundation of a free market world. Desire and determination to accomplish great things among the citizens lucky enough to live and thrive in a free market environment where government performs its core functions and does not focus on being a nanny and redistributing wealth will generate entrepreneurs by the thousands and millions.