In a speech today to the Chamber of Commerce, Barack Obama called for a reduction in corporate tax rates and simplification of the tax code, but he then pitched alternative energy, which is based wholly on tax breaks and subsidies. He said spending must be reduced and then again plugged the boondoggle of high-speed rail, which only benefits politically-connected contractors and unions, and bond traders. He said he favored free trade and then claimed that inventing something here and manufacturing it abroad “breaks the social compact.”
Obama started by saying that Americans have had their faith shakened in the institution of business. This is not true. Americans are hard-working and entrepreneurial. People are upset with the excesses of Wall Street that have been rewarded with bailouts that Obama has now institutionalized. Executives of big banks and car companies know that they will never be allowed to fail. They are running their businesses accordingly.
Obama’s model now is closer to crony capitalism than socialism. Obama softened the rhetoric today because he has already succeeded in bringing the economy under political control. Banking, health, housing, and automotive are now dominated by the government.
A decision was made early on that the biggest threat to Obama’s agenda was the business community. That is why Obama’s first two years was spent attempting to defang the private sector, sometimes with intimidation, sometime with bribes. Compare to the Clinton administration when insurance and drug companies helped defeat HillaryCare. The same companies either supported or did not oppose ObamaCare.
The fact that there are no readily identifiable Obama critics in the CEO ranks show how successful this campaign has been.
Instead, Obama now has pet CEOs like Jeff Immelt of GE and James McNerney of Boeing, who Obama has appointed to head government advisory committees, and whose companies are increasingly dependent on government business.
If Obama were really “pro-business,” he would:
1) Stop the spending. Forty cents of each dollar that government spends is now borrowed. This crushing debt, and the easy money necessary to sustain it, will catch up to corporate America in the form of input inflation and constricted margins in the short. In the long term, it will overwhelm our economy. Obama paid lip service to spending cuts today, but the problem will not be fixed with appointing commissions or “taming entitlements.” This is a crisis now.
2) Stop the EPA from imposing a back door form of cap and trade through carbon restrictions, and stop the National Labor Relations Board from imposing back-door card check.
3) Lift the drilling restrictions in the Gulf. Because of one bad company, Obama is hurting all kinds of businesses for a whole region of our country.
4) Close down the hotline that the Department of Labor has just established where employees can be referred to a trial lawyer to sue their boss.