Andy Matthews

Every week, NPRI President Andy Matthews writes a column for NPRI's week-in-review email. If you are not getting our emails, which contain our latest commentaries and news stories, you can sign up here to receive them.


Have you ever made a New Year’s resolution?

I’ve known people who’ve vowed to exercise more, spend quality with their family, eat healthy, read more or even to follow that dream they’ve always had.

I’ve even made some resolutions myself, with varying degrees of success.

A New Year’s resolution is a conscious acknowledgment of personal responsibility — that you have the power to change your job, your body, your circumstances and your life. And you do have that power. Where I’ve succeeded or failed in keeping resolutions, the credit or blame has been my own. I’m guessing your experience has been similar.

When I step back and think about it, New Year’s resolutions reveal one reason why I’m a free-market conservative. I believe in personal responsibility.

If someone makes a wise decision, works hard and follows through, he or she has the right to reap the rewards that come from that decision.

If someone gets up at 5:30 each morning and exercises for an hour, we celebrate that person’s improved fitness.

So why is it that when someone gets up at 5:30 each morning to build a business and improve the lives of others by offering their customers a desirable product at a competitive price, some people want to attack that person’s financial success, or claim, “You didn’t build that”?

Government’s job is to protect our God-given freedoms that allow us to make and then act on our resolutions, not punish those who succeed in keeping theirs.

I hope you had a Happy New Year, and I wish you the best of success in keeping your resolutions.

We’ve slowed our publishing down a bit for the holidays and for some planning time, but we’ll be back up to full speed on Monday. I want you to be the first to know that we’re planning a National School Choice Week event that we’re really excited about.

We’ll send out more details early next week, but mark your calendar for Jan. 28.

Until next time,

Andy Matthews
NPRI President

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