The Wall Street Journal published its first edition on 8 July 1889, as a four-page afternoon newspaper. Three financial journalists—Charles Dow, Edward Jones and Charles Bergstresser—saw a need for objective business and markets news. Now objective, reliable news may be all in the eyes of the reader, but their aim was to publish a paper of news and “not a paper of opinions” at a time when they felt that business news was unreliable and gossip; fact and fiction often intertwined, which perhaps just shows how much the past is still with us.
Be that as it may, by the WSJ’s own account, the WSJ has morphed today into the nation’s top daily newspaper by paid circulation, with over 2.2 million subscribers in 12 global versions and nine languages.
To help celebrate its 125th anniversary, the WSJ has asked a number of contributors for his or her single idea on changing American policy, society or culture. Former secretary of Labor, Treasury and State George Shultz would return to a constitutional government and asks that Congress live up to its constitutional duties. Paul Ryan would fix the jobs-killing unfair tax code, with its over $1 trillion in loopholes. As Mr. Ryan says, “The current code punishes free enterprise and rewards political influence.”
Darcy A. Olsen, president of the Goldwater Institute, warns that the federal government, which has been grabbing power for a century, needs to be brought up tight by state constitutions. Ms. Olson writes, “State constitutions can augment freedoms far above the federal baseline.”
From George Gilder to the former CEO of Intel to Michael Milken to Richard Epstein and others, read here how each would guide America away from the progressives’ big-government, shared well-being fiasco.