The new administration and Congress bring an important opportunity: a chance to pursue policies that can help all Americans realize their potential and improve their lives. History demonstrates that this kind of progress only comes from advancing the principles of a free and open society—one in which people are equipped to embrace the rapid pace of change and benefit from a dynamic economy.
Now is the time to reverse our nation’s trajectory toward a two-tiered society that benefits the wealthy and well-connected at the expense of everyone else. No president or government can solve every problem. America’s well-being also requires strong communities, an effective education system and principled businesses. Here are some important actions President Trump can take:
• End special treatment for the politically connected. Eliminate cronyism, starting with regulatory and tax reform, so businesses can’t stifle competition from innovators who offer a better product or service.
• Reform the poverty-causing policies that hold back so many. Embrace common-sense solutions—including for our criminal-justice system—that make communities safer and give worthy individuals a second chance.
• Encourage innovation. Unleash our education system so that all students can develop their innate abilities, discover how to think for themselves and become lifelong learners. Free our health care system so that it becomes not only affordable but focused on patients rather than third-party payers.
• Always listen, especially to those who disagree. Respect and toleration are the hallmarks of a free society and essential for making new discoveries. By encouraging free speech, free exchange and free trade, we enable the growth of knowledge and life-enhancing innovations that benefit us all.
It is my sincere hope that President Trump will seize this opportunity to adopt these policies so that all Americans can have a brighter future.
Mr. Koch is chairman and CEO of Koch Industries.
Read the op-ed here.