Every year the Heritage Foundation assembles a list of the top ten most economically free countries. This year, the U.S. has slipped to number nine on the list only just ahead of Muslim Bahrain. This is a bad showing as only two years ago the U.S. was in the sixth spot.

Sadly, the United States has been steadily slipping down the list in the last few years. Last year the U.S. appeared at eighth on the economic freedom list and In 2009 the U.S. came in at sixth.

Heritage says that the slipping reflects a deteriorating business climate.

The United States’ economic freedom score is 77.8, making its economy the 9th freest in the 2011 Index. Its score is 0.2 point lower than last year, reflecting deteriorating business freedom, trade freedom, government spending, and monetary freedom. The U.S. is ranked 2nd out of three countries in the North America region, and its overall score is well above the world and regional averages.

Heritage pins much of this falling in status on government spending and policies that have led to a “fragile business confidence.”

As the Foundations says, “mostly free is not good enough,” and they couldn’t be more correct.

The biggest problem with the U.S. economy at this point is President Obama. He has spent the last four years denouncing the business community, calling for its punishment, and announcing any manner of heavy-handed new regulations to quash business. It is no surprise that business is reluctant to invest and hire new people when they don’t know what sort of punishment Obama will next try to mete out to it.

Business his holding back afraid of crossing the most anti-business president we’ve ever seen. Who could blame them, after all?