Archive for the ‘Capitalism’ Category
The last pope, Benedict XVI, blamed capitalism for poverty and was a staunch advocate for socialized medicine. Apparently he didn’t see the connection between that and violations of religious liberty such as the HHS mandate.
Argentina, like most of Latin America, is a hotbed of Marxist “Liberation Theology” (Obama is an adherent of the racist version, Black Liberation Theology). But does Francis I subscribe to it? Unfortunately, the reports are contradictory and somewhat cryptic.
The Guardian calls him “a champion of liberation theology.”
Catholic Online says “Bergoglio is an accomplished theologian who distanced himself from liberation theology early in his career.”
According to John L. Allen Jr. of National Catholic Reporters, the Jesuit Bergoglio has long spoken out on behalf of the world’s poor and criticized free-market economic policies.
“We live in the most unequal part of the world, which has grown the most yet reduced misery the least,” Bergoglio told an assembly of Latin American bishops in 2007.
“The unjust distribution of goods persists, creating a situation of social sin that cries out to heaven and limits the possibilities of a fuller life for so many of our brothers.”
Here’s Lynch quoting from that 2011 speech delivered by, now, Pope Francis I:
Said Cardinal Bergoglio in said speech that “The economic and social crisis and the consequent increase in poverty has its causes in ways policies inspiredneoliberalism considering profits and market laws as parameters, to the detriment of the dignity of individuals and peoples. In this context, we reiterate the conviction that the loss of the sense of justice and lack of respect for others have worsened and led us to a situation of inequity. ” Later stressed the importance of “ social justice ”, the” equal opportunity “damage” transfers of capital abroad, “which should be required” distribution of wealth ”, said the damage of economic inequalities and the need to “prevent the use of financial resources is shaped by speculation,” especially in the context of the “social debt”-which in his opinion is of eminently “moral” – is to reform “economic structures” in expressed the sense before.
Again, I may have lost something in the translation, but it appears the new Pope fails to understand markets and holds the concepts of social justice, equal opportunity and distribution of wealth, as important. Concepts which, of course, generally lead to advocacy of much government intervention and much central planning. It as though the new Pope has somehow given up on the good in people, and perhaps even in God, and has decided to replace both with a central role for the coercive state.
The Investors Business Daily editorial board, however, contends that Francis I is no friend to Big Government:
The change that swept Eastern Europe in the 1980s and fueled the collapse of the Soviet Union may find itself repeated by a new pope with similar disdain for the authoritarian governments of his region.
When Cardinal Karol Wojtyla stepped out on the balcony of St. Peter’s in 1978 as Pope John Paul II, Soviet communism still stood astride Eastern Europe and his native Poland.
He would be the moral force helping to lead half a continent out of the human bondage of totalitarianism.
Argentina’s 76-year-old Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, now Pope Francis I, is no stranger to — or compromiser with — the oppression of authoritarian government.
During his tenure as Archbishop of Buenos Aires and head of Argentina’s Conference of Bishops, the new pope had a strained relationship with the governments of President Cristina Kirchner and her late husband, former President Nestor Kirchner, who once called Bergoglio “a real spokesman for the opposition.”
The cardinal who eschewed limousines to ride his bicycle or take the bus, is known as a man of the poor and of the people.
He gained admiration for living in a modest apartment instead of the palace in Buenos Aires that was adjacent to the Casa Rosada where the president resides (and where Juan and Evita Peron often harangued the Argentine people).
The new pope has fought a long battle in Argentina against leftist government, Peronist anticlericalism, the spread of evangelical Protestantism and the secular temptations of modern society.
Like Pope John Paul II, he is likely to resist calls to “modernize” the church, to make it more “popular” and “appealing.”
Like Pope John Paul II, Pope Francis is a strong opponent of what is called “liberation theology,” a bizarre mix of Marxism and Catholicism often embraced by left-leaning politicians and clerics in Argentina and elsewhere in the hemisphere.
Rosendo Fraga, a well-known Argentine political analyst, told the Miami Herald’s Andres Oppenheimer that Pope Francis “is definitely bad news for the Argentine government. His homilies, as recently as two weeks ago, were very critical of economic and social conditions, and of corruption in Argentina.”
“Francis may become a critic of governments such as those in Venezuela, Ecuador or Bolivia, in the same way that John Paul II became a critic of communism in Eastern Europe,” says Daniel Alvarez, a professor of religious studies at Florida International University.
[T]o be sure, South American governments are, with certain exceptions, nothing like the monolithic, totalitarian USSR.
Moreover, Pope Francis I is not as young as Pope John Paul II. Nor does he have a Ronald Reagan and a Margaret Thatcher to work with.
Even so, he does provide a rallying point for a region beset by authoritarianism that badly needs one.
Who knows whether this pope will stand up against the unscriptural tenets of Socialism? I guess we’ll have to wait and see.
Every year, the federal government spends well over a trillion dollars more than it takes in. As a result, it has racked up seventeen trillion dollars in debt, most of it in the last decade. In seven years at current rates, the U.S. will need almost a fifth of the GDP from the rest of the world just to finance our national debt.
Just two of our federal entitlements, Medicare and Social Security, have “unfunded future liabilities” of $46.2 trillion. Total liabilities are $86.8 trillion or more. Entitlements and other mandatory spending will burden more and more of the federal budget in the coming years. At today’s burn rate, before long no realistic amount of tax revenue will be able to service the debt and fund the government’s basic functions.
We need not worry about the federal government defaulting, since, unlike U.S. states or private citizens, it can print the money it needs to pay the bills. It can and will do so if we don’t make a course correction fast. Massive monetary expansion will ultimately devalue every dollar in circulation and trigger the sort of hyperinflation that flattens entire societies in short order. That’s bad enough, but when government borrows and spends for our supposed benefit, somebody else will have to foot some or all of the bill. If our faith applies to every aspect of life, then it must have something to say about this moral outrage.
[...] In the twentieth century, more than a hundred million people were murdered by their own governments. And that was just in communist countries. History and scripture agree: because of sin, governments with too much power become propagators of evil and destruction.
This speaks directly to government debt, since deficit spending is a symptom of government doing more than it can or should. The federal government now borrows and spends with such reckless abandon that it is careening toward a global economic catastrophe. If Christians can’t muster the courage to speak out against what Rep. Paul Ryan has called “the most predictable debt crisis in history,” we won’t deserve to be taken seriously after the collapse.
Sadly, many Christians don’t know how to disciple our nation to turn the tide because they’ve never studied God’s design for economics or the Biblical role of government. They can’t teach what they don’t know. The key to real reformation, says R.C. Sproul, Jr., is for Christians to understand and work to implement Biblical economic principles:
Christian author and teacher R.C. Sproul, Jr. told CBN News Anchor Lee Webb that he believes it’s time to return to the basics when it comes to economics.
“When we’re left arguing about whether or not we should have a marginal tax rate of 45 percent or 48 percent, and the conservative is stuck arguing for the 45 percent we’ve had an insufficient reformation in our thinking,” Sproul said.
Sproul believes that reformation will happen only when we return to scripture to see what God has to say about economics. That’s why he produced a video series called “Economics for Everybody.” It’s a compelling, even entertaining approach to a topic many find boring.
[...] Sproul provides historical evidence that nations most influenced by biblical Christianity are nations that, by and large, have prospered. They are nations marked by decentralized governments and free markets.
But nations that reject God are marked by centralized power, tyranny, and no free markets. Unfortunately, he said he has observed some of those troubling trends in America now.
“The United States is not a free market. It’s an interventionist economy that’s been moving closer to socialism for over a century now,” he said. “I am not optimistic about our nation’s future economically.”
“We live in a country in which the state forbids me to hire a man unless I promise to pay him X number of dollars,” Sproul explained. “We now live in a country where I can’t hire 50 men unless I promise to buy them all health insurance, including access to abortion.”
“This is not economic liberty. This is not free markets,” he said. “We’re missing the fact that we’re the frog and the water is boiling.”
That’s why Sproul believes it’s not enough to think conservatively. We must think biblically and train our children biblically.
“It’s my conviction that education is always and everywhere religious,” he said.
“And it’s not a surprise that when 80 percent of evangelical parents have their children in the government’s schools that they’re going to embrace the religion of the government which is the worship of the state,” he said.
Sproul cautioned Christians to avoid despair. One way to do that is by returning to the beginning, to the Creation Mandate and begin to see that our work is part of worship.
If you have never watched the “Economics For Everybody” series, I highly recommend it! We cannot teach what we do not know!
I know there are a lot of Protestants who buy into these ideas as well, but we’re so dispersed that it’s easy to dismiss a Protestant like Jim Wallis who peddles this garbage. Where are the conservative Catholics supposed to go?
Earlier in his homily, the leader of the world’s 1.2 billion Roman Catholics decried “hotbeds of tension and conflict caused by growing instances of inequality between rich and poor“.
The idea that economic inequality is the root of most conflict is a Socialist idea, not a Biblical one. The Bible makes it clear that man’s sinful nature is the source of mankind’s broken relationships and conflicts.
Also, the Pope appears to mistakenly assume that economic inequality is automatically a form of injustice which creates resentment, not recognizing that poor people are not made poorer by other people getting richer, because wealth is not a zero-sum game. Any resentment over inequality is either based in envy, or anger over being cheated and exploited (in which case, it is the dishonest manner in which the wealth was gained, not the wealth disparity itself, which is the problem).
He also denounced “the prevalence of a selfish and individualistic mindset which also finds expression in an unregulated capitalism, various forms of terrorism and criminality”.
Funny how Socialists believe that it is “selfish” for people to want to keep what they earn, but neglect to recognize selfishness in those who demand that money be taken from those who earned it and given to themselves (who didn’t earn it). The Bible has a word for that, however: theft.
Also, Socialists denounce any rejection of collectivist control over goods and services as “individualist” and selfish, completely ignoring the fact that God Himself established private property rights when he gave the 10 commandments, including “Do not covet” and “Do not steal.”
Socialists also assume that pure Capitalism is an “unregulated,” winner-takes-all affair. Nonsense! True Capitalism requires law and order to make sure that all transactions are conducted honestly and voluntarily, without coercion or deceit. Free enterprise is not anarchy. Nor is it a form of “terrorism and criminality.”
Guess I shouldn’t be surprised that the Pope completely misses these points. He’s a former Nazi youth, after all, and like most Germans has never fully rejected the Welfare State or many of the other Socialist underpinnings of the Nazi party. Also, like most Christians across the theological spectrum, he has never studied Biblical Economics.
Sadly, millions will hear his ignorant statements and become even more firmly entrenched in the unscriptural idea that Socialism is Biblical and free enterprise is evil.
Even more sadly, millions of Catholics are fighting for religious liberty against the very kinds of oppressive Socialist governments the Pope is supporting with these statements. At a time when he should be denouncing abuses of government power, he denounces the “individualism” of those fighting for their God-given rights of economic and religious liberty instead.
According to a Gallup poll conducted November 18-19, more than half of Democrats (53%) approve of socialism, which isn’t surprising, but almost one-quarter of Republicans (23%) also do.
What the poll reveals is that there is a significant difference between the reality of what voters approve and their reactions to terms that represent those realities. For example, Democrats favor the “federal government” over “capitalism” by 20 percentage points, yet they approve of “small business” almost unanimously, at a 94% level. When asked about big business, Democrats approval rate drops all the way to 44%.
But when the term “free enterprise” is used instead of capitalism, 88% Democrats approve of it. This indicates that capitalism is a loaded term for Democrats and that the left has demonized the very word.
There are several reasons for this shift. First, over 90% of American children attend socialist government schools, where they are taught that socialism is compassion, capitalism is greed and government is the solutions for all of societies’ ills. Once they graduate, the socialist monopolies in universities, Hollywood, pop culture and news media are there to ensure that they hear little else than the collectivist party line. A generation that has already been indoctrinated to accept such pablum without question will have a very difficult time discerning through the lies, unless they take it upon themselves to study opposite viewpoints from original sources and seek out alternative media sources.
Lastly – and most tragically – Christians and church leaders in the west are overwhelmingly ignorant of Biblical economics and Biblical solutions to poverty, so they are easily seduced by socialist arguments. The church cannot offer Biblical solutions to a hurting world if we ourselves are ignorant of them and have bought instead the lies of the world.
It’s more important than ever that Christians learn to understand Biblical economics so they can recognize the deceptive dangers of Socialism and offer real solutions to the hurting world around us.
Many Christians vote for politicians who support completely unbiblical economic policies because they have no idea what the Bible has to say about economics. All they know about economics they learned in secular government schools and the talking points put forth by politicians and political activists.
The world is reeling from poverty, drowning in debt, and suffering from other hardships caused by bad economic policies. God’s Word has the answers. Christians are called to disciple the nations to obey everything Christ commanded, INCLUDING in the area of economics, but we can’t teach hurting nations what we haven’t bothered to learn for ourselves.
A week ago, a lot of Americans received a jolt. After the election dust settled, they realized a majority of voters don’t want to lessen the role of government in their lives. If anything, they want to see government expand.
It was (and continues to be) the talk of the airwaves and Internet. As one radio host put it, in light of the election results, what we need is significant economic education. He is right – we do.
It is a pretty grave problem. The truth is that a majority of Americans in both political parties are radically ignorant of basic economics. In numerous ways, most people in the United States have been committed to some form of economic suicide for generations. They just don’t realize the extent of it.
This is one of the main reasons we created Economics for Everybody. The long-term implications of government intervention in the economy are extremely dangerous to all of us, especially to our religious freedoms. More and more people have a sinking feeling about this. But unless they take time to learn the basics of economics, nothing will change.
What is really at stake here?
If a majority of Americans are committed to the expansion of the welfare state, it will lead to increasing poverty for all. A basic economic principle is that whatever you subsidize you get more of.
If a dad offers to give money to his kids to clean up their rooms, he’ll get cleaner rooms. In the same way, if a government offers money to its citizens when they are unemployed, it will get more unemployment. Strange as it may seem, statistics consistently bear this out. And since the government offers money for all sorts of things it shouldn’t be offering money for, it’s no wonder we are where we are. We discuss this at length in ‘Lesson 10 – The Corporate and Welfare States of America.’
Next, if a majority of Americans are committed to government intervention in business through regulation, it will lead to a shrinking business sector. The basic economic principle here is that governments are unable to make accurate economic calculations.
The whole idea behind a planned economy is that central planners know better than producers and consumers what’s good for the economy. But such an idea assumes that a few people not only can comprehend, but actually direct the unique and ever-changing choices of limitless producers and consumers better than they can themselves.
It would be like a few people telling everyone else what they should buy at a grocery store. It’s functionally impossible to know all the discrete needs and desires of that many people, so the only way to attempt it is through general rules that restrict and direct consumption for all. At a business level, such a regulatory approach always ends in more and more businesses not being able to operate profitably and shutting down, ultimately resulting in the slow strangulation of an economy. We explain exactly how it happens in ‘Lesson 8 – The Basics of Government Intervention.’
Finally, if a majority of Americans don’t understand the relationship between economic freedom and religious freedom, they will inevitably lose both. The economic principle is that we are caught in a cosmic battle that has many economic aspects: God wants us to build up a godly civilization with our resources while Satan wants to prevent us from doing so.
In an economy based on Christian principles, there is economic freedom for people to use their land, labor and capital as they see fit. It is a matter of individual stewardship based on God-given ability and property. But in an economy based on atheistic principles, the government is a tool of Satan to control the lives of individuals so that they cannot steward their resources and time for God’s Kingdom. Think of the many socialist and communist economies that persecuted tens of millions of Christians.
The fact that there is a spiritual battle going on that has economic dimensions is lost on most people. But it is the reality of this, as well as the fact of sin in the world, that is so important economically. History reveals this to us over and over again. We explain it in greater detail in ‘Lessons 6 & 7 – A Tale of Two Theologies.’
There is, of course, even more to economics. We try to explore as many basic principles as necessary in the twelve-lesson series. Our belief is that if people go through the entire Economics for Everybody curriculum, they will be in a much better place to understand what happened last Tuesday on Election Day. They will also understand what needs to happen in the future.
Obama: Banks Are In It To Make Money And That’s Why We Need To Regulate Them
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Whenever Obama goes off teleprompter, it’s only a matter of time before his Marxist roots start to show. He just can’t help himself:
“Look, these financial institutions are in to make money and that’s why we need some smart regulations and this is an example of the difference in this campaign because my opponent says he wants to roll back all those [Dodd-Frank] regulations.”
Obama is right in this regard; this worldview is an example of the difference between his campaign and Romney’s. The Massachusetts Governor does not believe making a profit is a bad thing government needs to regulate.
Further, what Obama does not understand is that such regulations — like Dodd-Frank — have actually hurt small and community banks that do not have the resources of the larger financial institutions to deal with the burdens such laws impose.
One of the biggest drivers of the financial crisis was the federal government creating artificial, politically-driven incentives that moved these financial institutions to even make these “reckless bets.” Finance isn’t blameless, but how is more government involvement and control a desirable idea?
[...] Firstly, the president has yet to sufficiently explain why a large, entrenched bureaucracy seeking political gain through fiat is somehow nobler than a private, productive business seeking monetary profit by meeting consumers’ choices. As Ammon Simon writes for Forbes, Dodd-Frank is the very definition of tyranny. Secondly, Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan are not financial anarchists, but yes, they do want to roll back these new economy-damaging, job-killing, small-bank-sinking regulations still being written that are protecting large institutions “too big to fail” status rather than mitigating it.
This is socialism in its purest form, but most Americans don’t recognize it because they have never experienced it and you can be sure that our liberally run education system would not teach it as such. Instead, they disguise it as being pro-poor people and teach our children that successful business people are the real villains of our land.
Others who have come here from other countries who have lived under socialist rule readily see what Obama is doing and try to warn us about letting him turn us into another failed socialist country. Many have come here to escape socialism and are now living with the fear that America will become like the countries they left.
Obama believes that businesses shouldn’t be in it to make money. If you take away the profit motive, and why would anybody work?
It is any wonder his policies have hurt so many businesses and jobs, while swelling the numbers on welfare and food stamps?
We can’t afford 4 more years of this!
Without a doubt, this is one of my favorite clips of Milton Friedman schooling Phil Donahue on Capitalism, Socialism and greed:
“The great virtue of a free market system is that it does not care what color people are; it does not care what their religion is; it only cares whether they can produce something you want to buy. It is the most effective system we have discovered to enable people who hate one another to deal with one another and help one another.” ~ Milton Friedman
Stephen Moore at the Wall Street Journal pays tribute to “The Man Who Saved Capitalism“:
It’s a tragedy that Milton Friedman—born 100 years ago on July 31—did not live long enough to combat the big-government ideas that have formed the core of Obamanomics. It’s perhaps more tragic that our current president, who attended the University of Chicago where Friedman taught for decades, never fell under the influence of the world’s greatest champion of the free market. Imagine how much better things would have turned out, for Mr. Obama and the country.
[...] In the 1960s, Friedman famously explained that “there’s no such thing as a free lunch.” If the government spends a dollar, that dollar has to come from producers and workers in the private economy. There is no magical “multiplier effect” by taking from productive Peter and giving to unproductive Paul. As obvious as that insight seems, it keeps being put to the test. Obamanomics may be the most expensive failed experiment in free-lunch economics in American history.
Equally illogical is the superstition that government can create prosperity by having Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke print more dollars. In the very short term, Friedman proved, excess money fools people with an illusion of prosperity. But the market quickly catches on, and there is no boost in output, just higher prices.
Next to Ronald Reagan, in the second half of the 20th century there was no more influential voice for economic freedom world-wide than Milton Friedman. Small in stature but a giant intellect, he was the economist who saved capitalism by dismembering the ideas of central planning when most of academia was mesmerized by the creed of government as savior.
Friedman was awarded the Nobel Prize in economics for 1976—at a time when almost all the previous prizes had gone to socialists. This marked the first sign of the intellectual comeback of free-market economics since the 1930s, when John Maynard Keynes hijacked the profession. Friedman’s 1963 book “A Monetary History of the United States, 1867-1960,” written with Anna Schwartz (who died on June 21), was a masterpiece and changed the way we think about the role of money.
More influential than Friedman’s scholarly writings was his singular talent for communicating the virtues of the free market to a mass audience. His two best-selling books, “Capitalism and Freedom” (1962) and “Free to Choose: A Personal Statement” (1980), are still wildly popular. His videos on YouTube on issues like the morality of capitalism are brilliant and timeless.
Renown economist Thomas Sowell remembers his former teacher:
In being able to express himself at both the highest level of his profession and also at a level that the average person could readily understand, Milton Friedman was like the economist whose theories and persona were most different from his own — John Maynard Keynes.
Like many, if not most, people who became prominent as opponents of the left, Professor Friedman began on the left. Decades later, looking back at a statement of his own from his early years, he said: “The most striking feature of this statement is how thoroughly Keynesian it is.”
No one converted Milton Friedman, either in economics or in his views on social policy. His own research, analysis and experience converted him.
As a professor, he did not attempt to convert students to his political views. I made no secret of the fact that I was a Marxist when I was a student in Professor Friedman’s course, but he made no effort to change my views. He once said that anybody who was easily converted was not worth converting.
I was still a Marxist after taking Professor Friedman’s class. Working as an economist in the government converted me.
[...] Although Milton Friedman became someone regarded as a conservative icon, he considered himself a liberal in the original sense of the word — someone who believes in the liberty of the individual, free of government intrusions. Far from trying to conserve things as they are, he wrote a book titled “Tyranny of the Status Quo.”
Milton Friedman proposed radical changes in policies and institution ranging from the public schools to the Federal Reserve. It is liberals who want to conserve and expand the welfare state.
Milton Friedman: Socialism is Force
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This is a truth that Obama’s Marxist ideology simply won’t permit him to accept.
Gayle Trotter opines at Fox News:
“If you’ve got a business — you didn’t build that,” President Obama told supporters in Roanoke, Virginia last Friday. “Somebody else made that happen.”
Last I checked, it was the other way around. If you’re running the federal government — you didn’t build that.
Predictably enough, Obama is already backpeddling from the inadvertently transparent insight he provided into his administration’s real ideology — one that so many Americans find antithetical to our country’s founding principles. “What I said,” he now claims, is that “together we build roads and we build bridges.”
Of course, if that were true, none of this would have made news in the first place. “News flash: Roads and bridges built by government, not entrepreneurs.”
Taxpayers pay Obama’s $400,000 annual salary. Roads, the Internet, and everything that Obama says “somebody else made” were financed by American taxpayers, including businesses from sole proprietors mowing lawns to employees of medium-sized businesses to those on the Fortune 500 list.
To be sure, government adds value. Maintaining law and order, providing a military and securing “the Blessings of Liberty for ourselves and our Posterity,” to name a few.
But government cannot create wealth. Government revenue comes from Americans’ toil and sweat, and recently, big IOUs to foreign countries with awful human rights violations and global ambitions.
Obama invoked firefighters and teachers in his Virginia speech, but not Solyndra. We could use more public safety personnel and educators. Too seldom do taxpayer funds go toward hire more of the workers that we need. Too often the money goes down a rathole like Solyndra and so many other programs.
“There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me,” Obama said, “because they want to give something back.” Great, let them give whatever they want.
Let’s not kid ourselves that the federal tax code has anything to do with “giving.” A gift does not land you in legal jeopardy when you decline to give it.
Business owners want to give back to their families, their customers, and their communities. A landscaping company takes care of the community little league fields, just because it can. Giving back is not the same as paying taxes on threat of jail for noncompliance.
When a reporter posed the immediate opportunity to “give back” to the U.S. Treasury, famous liberals refused the opportunity.
Truly “giving back” means spending more time with family and volunteering with the community. Think of the volunteer hours that are lost each year when Americans have to spend so much time keeping in compliance with the regulatory state and working longer hours to pay taxes to a government that spends recklessly while telling Americans that they aren’t being prudent enough.
In this video, small business owners remind the president that THEY, NOT THE GOVERNMENT, built their businesses with their own hard work and sacrifice:
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A recent Rasmussen poll shows that 3 out of 4 Americans believe that small business owners are “primarily responsible for [the] success of their business.”
You recently made a statement to the effect that, ”If you have a business you didn’t build it, you had help” inferring that the federal government helped build our businesses by virtue of paving roads and building bridges and keeping the nation safe from foreign invasion.
First of all, Mr. Obama, if I’m going to take advice about business it will not be from somebody who has had absolutely no business experience like yourself.
Secondly, Mr. Obama, I vehemently disagree with your premise.
Where was your government when I spent as much as 16 weeks away from my wife and infant son to get a business started?
Where were you on those cold winter nights when my old bus broke down in the middle of nowhere and we had to scramble to make the next show, nobody from the government came along to give us a ride.
Where was your government when I had to borrow money from a bank to make my payroll?
Where was your government while I was digging out of a two million dollar debt, playing every smoky beer joint I could to keep from losing everything I owned?
Mr. Obama, I want to make you aware of a fact. It is the federal government’s responsibility to build roads and bridges and keep the nation safe. That’s what the federal government is supposed to do, not create an entitlement society that is totally unsustainable and pile up debt that we can’t pay.
And who do you think paid for those roads and bridges in the first place, and have been doing it for 200 years before you were even born.
The citizens of this nation do not need to pay more taxes, the federal government needs to stop spending money it doesn’t have and has to borrow. Because the truth of the matter is that no matter how much taxes the government collects, things are only going to get worse because you’ll only spend it and demand even more.
Barack Obama in ‘Dreams From My Father’ on his only private sector job: “Like a spy behind enemy lines…”
“When you spread the wealth around, it’s good for everybody.” ~ Barack Obama, Oct 2008
“I do believe at some point you’ve made enough money.” ~ Barack Obama, April 2010
“Government investments… have made this country great.” ~ Barack Obama, April 2012
His latest statement is just as revealing:
Oops, Obama! Your Marxism is showing!
We’re seeing more and more of the real Barack Obama, as Election Day draws closer–more of the angry radical lurking behind the mask of Hope and Change.
Certainly his remarks Friday in Roanoke, Virginia, “If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen”– are the most chilling words ever uttered by a sitting president.
They represent a declaration of war not just on American business, which Obama already wants to hit with higher taxes come January, but the entire concept of private property. They’ve put every business and property owner on notice, that the fruits of your business are not yours but ours, and “someone else” — meaning government and those it purports to represent and speak for– is free to appropriate them by any means necessary.
This administration covertly began its war on property rights in 2009 when it seized control of General Motors and put the government and unions in charge, shoving aside legitimate credit-holders. But now the mask is completely off and we can see Obama firmly in a line of radical thought going back to Jean-Jacques Rousseau, the first modern thinker to claim that private property was the source of all our ills, Karl Marx, and Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, who declared “Property is Theft.”
That kind of thinking flies in the face of a tradition older than the Founding Fathers and defined by John Locke, that anything in nature with which I mingle my labor is rightfully mine–including the capital I invest to make the fruits of that property grow. For most small business owners, that capital is often their own personal labor, as any farmer, owner of a hair salon, dry cleaning parlor, car dealership, or video game software company, can tell you. Yet even if that company becomes as big as Apple or Starbucks, it still carries the seed of that original mingling of nature and labor. Its success is still the property of its owner or owners, and no one else’s.
Now Obama wants to sweeps that fundamental principle aside. “If you’ve been successful,” he told his Roanoke listeners, “you didn’t get there on your own.” That’s because (goes the argument) your property depends on roads and bridges and police and fire departments (even though you paid for them in taxes), and the labor of your employees (even though you pay their wages, not the government). So what you own, the president and others like him are saying, becomes in effect a public holding subject to rules of “fairness” and the “common good.”
This doesn’t just gut the concept of private property; it opens the door to social chaos.
Obama is a Saul Alinsky disciple, well trained in his mentor’s “Rules For Radicals” tactics. He’s an unapologetic Marxist with dictatorial ambitions, and an enormous threat to the survival of our Republic.
That’s why, once Romney got done with his scorched earth campaign against his GOP primary opponents, it was rather unnerving to see him pull back and try to play “nice” against our REAL enemy!
But after Obama’s refusal to apologize for lying outright about him (what did he expect?), Romney finally seems to have ditched his McCain-style “Mr. Nice Guy” campaign:
That’s the hard-hitting strategy we need to see more of! Romney needs to treat Obama as the dangerous enemy of America that he is, and deal with him accordingly. Never miss an opportunity to expose his agenda and hang his record around his neck!
If Romney is going to withstand the attacks on his business record and character, he’d be advised to respond with some force. President Obama has had three-and-a-half years to turn things around, to create an environment that fosters job creation and hit the brakes before we run off the fiscal cliff. And while this election should be about the economy, Obama has managed to turn it into an election about Romney’s wealth and private-sector business experience.
For Obama, it would seem that when government policies and a big-government agenda fail to fix the economy, the only thing left to do is blame the private sector. Romney shouldn’t let him get away with it. In fact, Obama’s willingness to attack the private sector, where jobs are actually created, should be an advantage for Team Romney.
Between regulations, Obamacare and the endless recession, small business owners are just holding their breaths to see what’s going to hit them next. If the Democrats get their way, it’ll be Taxmaggedon in January.
I was President Obama’s college classmate at Columbia University, Class of ’83. Almost every one of my classmates were openly socialist or Marxist, with many of these leftist radicals calling for an end to capitalism and “bringing down the system” by destroying the U.S. economy with entitlements, debt, and crisis.
That’s why I have predicted in thousands of media interviews from the first days of Obama’s presidency that Obama is a radical, with a deep-seated hatred of business owners, a desire to demonize us and destroy America’s faith in capitalism, and a plan to bring down the system by overwhelming our economy with debt and crisis — just as we all learned and discussed at Columbia in our college days.
[...] Obama said words that made me sick to my stomach and brought tears to my eyes. Words so vile they are an affront to every American business owner and a reminder of his true beliefs — a deep-seated hatred and resentment toward capitalist business owners. Obama said that we business owners owe our success to government. He actually said that if you’ve built a business, you don’t get the credit. It’s government who has been by your side. You need to give government the credit.
Obama believes government helped me every step of the way as a businessman? Really? Honest to God? With that kind of thinking, I think it’s now safe to say Obama has come out of the closet. Either he’s a Marxist hell bent on demonizing wealthy business owners and destroying capitalism, or perhaps he’s high on that drug he enjoyed so much in his youthful days.
Because the reality is that government has hurt me, every step of the way. Government has NEVER helped me. But Obama is right about one thing — government is always by our side. Unfortunately it ruins everything it touches.
Here’s a synopsis of what government has done for me:
They’ve stolen my hard-earned money that I could have used to expand my business, or start new ones, or invest in stocks and real estate. Instead it went to government in the form of taxes, fees, licenses and workers compensation.
Don’t forget the rules, regulations and mandates that made it difficult or near impossible to start a business in the first place.
Or the accountant and tax lawyer bills that could have been put to use creating jobs.
Or the IRS audits that stole valuable dollars and hours that I can never get back — even though every one of them ended up with me owing not a dime. But the damage was already done to an innocent man.
Or the millions my public company spent on complying with ridiculous bureaucratic boondoggles like Sarbanes Oxley — thereby wasting millions of dollars that could have instead created jobs and shareholder value for my investors.
Don’t forget the bills passed by government that literally wiped out multiple businesses that I owned (multiple times).
Yes, Obama has a point. Government is always there by my side — stealing my money, robbing me blind, redistributing what I earned into the hands of people not willing to work as hard or as smart as me, distracting me with thousands of pages of regulations, limiting my options, wiping out jobs and destroying shareholder value.
But Obama’s not finished yet. The Heritage Foundation warns:
It’s a tough time to be a business owner and entrepreneur in America. Surveys show small business owners are struggling, and they are not expanding or hiring because of tax and regulatory uncertainty. Federal agencies, from Health and Human Services to the Environmental Protection Agency, are regulating them to death. And just last week, President Obama announced his latest economic plan was to hit job creators with a tax increase.
The President’s plan to raise taxes on earnings above $200,000 ($250,000 for joint filers) would hit 1.2 million small-business employers who pay their taxes through the individual income tax, known as flow-through businesses. These businesses that are creating jobs earn almost all—91 percent—of the income earned by flow-through employer-businesses.
The new tax increase could be equivalent to one employee per small business. According to calculations by The Heritage Foundation’s Center for Data Analysis, the average American with $250,000 or more in income can expect an average $24,888 tax increase next year under Obama’s proposed policies. That $24,888 figure is often enough for a salary. So the President could be putting about 1.2 million jobs—perhaps even more—at risk with this tax hike.
Hitting private job creators while advocating more stimulus spending and government jobs. That’s the President’s plan for the economy.
Obama has never started or managed a business or had to make payroll. He once described his brief stint working in private sector as spying ‘behind enemy lines’. As David Limbaugh observes, he doesn’t surround himself with anyone who has significant private sector experience:
Obama has few people with business experience in his administration. He has no former CEOs in his Cabinet, and there is almost no top-level private-sector experience among his inner circle of advisers. Time magazine’s Fareed Zakaria, a liberal and a big fan of Obama’s, admits that even the business leaders who voted for Obama believe he is, “at his core, anti-business.”
Mr. Obama has no business talking about business. He has never created anything substantive and doesn’t understand those who have made it their life’s work. This president only invented the stories and people he made up for his purported autobiography, assuming somebody else didn’t make that happen.
The president is obviously clueless about what it takes to start a business from scratch, having never done anything remotely like that, since his career has consisted entirely of suckling at the government teat.
But having done it myself a few times, perhaps I should take a stab at enlightening him, and those who unfortunately think like him. The process is quite different from being a well-connected campaign donor who tosses together a green energy scam like Solyndra and can depend on government largess to fund it as a kickback for services rendered.
First, you need to take a look at the marketplace and develop a skill, a service, a product, or an idea that people are willing to pay for. Some people obtain these by working for others, figuring out how to do what the company they’re now working for does better, saving up some of their hard-earned money, rolling the dice, and stepping off into space without the safety net of a guaranteed paycheck. Others develop something over time as a part-time income until they feel they have enough business developed and enough of a rep to go it alone, or in partnership with others.
No matter the case, it involves risking all of your assets in exchange for a shot at financial independence. People deny themselves as they squirrel away capital, hit their credit cards, or borrow the money, usually on their homes.
It is one of life’s solemn and sometimes scary moments when someone pushes a loan application or an equipment or office lease at you, and you’re wondering if you’re going to end up being a failure.
You’ll always wonder in the beginning whether you did the right thing.
If the business is to be successful, you work long, hard hours, with no guarantee that anything will come of it. If you run a store, you have to be concerned with things like inventory, shoplifting, and cutthroat price-cutting from your larger, already established competitors. If you run a service business, you work with no guarantee you’ll be paid for your efforts until the deal closes and your client’s check clears the bank.
In the beginning, unless you start out with a boatload of money, you do everything, and if you screw up, it comes out of your pocket — no one else’s. Aside from the actual day-to-day work your business entails, you do the books, you keep the records and pay the fees government requires, you answer the phones, you make the decisions on advertising and marketing, you chase down new business, you deal with vendors and do the ordering (an art in itself), you deal with sales reps seeking to sell you things you usually don’t need, you pay the bills, and you sweep up.
In exchange for these fun-filled 15- to 18-hour days, you might make a profit after a few months and be able to start paying your bills out of the proceeds.
If you do all these things well, your business is one of the minority that survives its first year, and you’ve made enough money to expand a bit, you may be able to hire employees. Yes, at that point you actually might need to supervise and direct others aside from yourself. Make the right hiring decisions, and ideally, you begin to make more money as you put a business team together. Make the wrong one, and aside from losing money, even coming in to work can become hell.
“Fascism is socialism with a capitalist veneer.” ~ The Concise Encyclopedia of Economics
One of the reasons why many of the “Occupiers” dislike Obama is that they don’t think he’s Socialist enough, because he does engage in cronyism with big corporations that support his agenda and fund his campaign. They would prefer to see most companies and industries outright nationalized. Obama prefers to control them from behind the scenes while pretending to support the free market, like he’s done with GM.
Whichever economic strategy he uses, the end goal is the same: total autocratic control from the Executive branch, the sidelining of the co-equal federal branches and our constitution into irrelevancy, and the “fundamental transformation” of our nation and economy into a Leftist Utopia ruled by elitists.
It bothers me a little when conservatives call Barack Obama a “socialist.” He certainly is an enemy of the free market, and wants politicians and bureaucrats to make the fundamental decisions about the economy. But that does not mean that he wants government ownership of the means of production, which has long been a standard definition of socialism.
What President Obama has been pushing for, and moving toward, is more insidious: government control of the economy, while leaving ownership in private hands. That way, politicians get to call the shots, but, when their bright ideas lead to disaster, they can always blame those who own businesses in the private sector.
Politically, it is heads-I-win when things go right, and tails-you-lose when things go wrong. This is far preferable, from Obama’s point of view, since it gives him a variety of scapegoats for all his failed policies, so that he no longer has to use President Bush as a scapegoat all the time.
Government ownership of the means of production means that politicians also own the consequences of their policies, and have to face responsibility when those consequences are disastrous — something that Barack Obama avoids like the plague.
Thus the Obama administration can arbitrarily force insurance companies to cover the children of their customers until the children are 26 years old. Obviously, this creates favorable publicity for President Obama. But if this and other government edicts cause insurance premiums to rise, then that is something that can be blamed on the “greed” of the insurance companies.
The same principle, or lack of principle, applies to many other privately owned businesses. It is a very successful political ploy that can be adapted to all sorts of situations.
[...] What socialism, fascism, and other ideologies of the Left have in common is an assumption that some very wise people — like themselves — need to take decisions out of the hands of lesser people, i.e., the rest of us, and impose those decisions by government fiat.
The vision of those of the Left is not only a vision of the world, but also a vision of themselves as superior beings pursuing superior ends. In the United States, however, this vision conflicts with a Constitution that begins, “We, the People . . . ”
That is why the Left has for more than a century been trying to get the Constitution’s limitations on government loosened or evaded by judges’ new interpretations, based on notions of “a living Constitution” that will take decisions out of the hands of “We, the People,” and transfer those decisions to our betters.
Chicagoland Shakedown: Why It’s Impossible to Run a Business Without Breaking The Law
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I’m impressed with anybody who dares to try and start a business under this administration’s incredibly hostile business environment.
Two studies suggest the “head winds” that President Obama says are holding back employers are of his own making. His policies have sidelined a key job creator: the entrepreneur.
Historically, young startup firms have been a major job engine for the economy, particularly as the nation has emerged from recessions. But new federal data show the rate of business startups continues to fall in this recovery.
According to the Census Bureau, the startup rate, measured as a share of all firms, has plunged to 7% from 9% in 2008 and from 11% in 2006. The pace, moreover, is almost half the 1980s’ peak of 13%.
Of all the negative trends tracking this administration, this may be the most disturbing.
As startups have hit an all-time low, we’ve seen an accompanying decline in job creation from startups, which explains the jobless recovery.
The data, which go back to the early ’80s, show that the share of new job creation from startups has fallen from over 40% in that decade, when business formation exploded and the economy saw huge gains in payroll employment, to under 30% today.
The difference is incentives: President Reagan slashed taxes and unshackled entrepreneurs from burdensome government rules, while Obama strangles them with new red tape and threats of tax hikes.
Obama cynically invokes the memory of Reagan, but he doesn’t get what Reagan got — that small private businesses, not government, create jobs and household wealth.And they do so through incentives, not browbeating.