A government that establishes a basic legal infrastructure is an important key to prosperity. But when it goes far from that, it becomes an impediment.

Bernie Marcus, one of the two founders of retailing giant Home Depot, recently talked with Investors Business Daily. “I can tell you,” he said to the publication, “that today the impediments that the government imposes are impossible to deal with. Home Depot would never have succeeded if we’d tried to start it today.”

Marcus cited the “thousands of pages” of regulations enacted by the Obama Administration, as well as the Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare). Perhaps even more disturbing, he says that business leaders are afraid that if they speak out, the IRS or SEC will come after them. That represents a slide towards crony capitalism, in which governments play favorites based on how well business owners support the regime.

Marcus concludes, “The free enterprise system made this country what it is today, and we’ve got to keep it alive. We are on the edge of the abyss.”

Perhaps more than ever, we need groups such as the Minnesota Free Market Institute.

Marcus now works with theĀ Job Creator’s Alliance, which is based on some principles I can endorse:

* Regulatory uncertainty is bad for commerce–and employment.

* Corporate tax rates are too high and hinder job growth.

* Excessive regulations have businesses “running scared.”