Wednesday, November 11, 2009

 

Newsflash: Free-Market-Hating Totalitarian Interventionist Wealth-Confiscating Redistributionist Big-Government President Bad For The Economy

As I and others have long contended, it isn't just that Obama doesn't know how to prevent the economy from going down the tubes; it's that he wants it to go down the tubes. And as Rand Simberg contends, even if Obama suddenly decided he did not want to destroy the free market economy, he couldn't do anything to rescue it anyway. Not any more.

Why? Because his brand is shot. When it comes to jobs and the economy "Obama" means nothing but pain: unemployment, higher taxes, higher energy costs; less disposable income, insane spending, eternal deficits, a trillion this and a trillion that; zero stability and therefore zero opportunity.

In other words, Hopelessness. Think Michigan and California.

To borrow from an old joke, it's not us - it's him. Barack Obama is so obviously against the free market and economic recovery in America that businesses both big and small have decided to hunker down and ride out the mess created by his administration. No sense drawing too much attention when it could attract the covetous gaze of a totalitarian-minded czar who can decide you're making too much in the way of unnecessary capitalist perks like, say, a paycheck, or a profitable bottom line. Better to just lay low until the whole statist shitstorm blows over.


The problem is not that Obama doesn’t spend enough time on the economy — his philosophy isn’t capable of (or interested in?) stimulating growth anyway. . . .

He could also have promised to keep in place the Bush tax rate cuts, due to expire next year, providing more confidence in the future of the economy. He could have let his campaign promises about nationalizing health care and dramatically raising the costs of energy with cap ‘n’ tax expire, as all of his statements and promises eventually do.

But something he could have done — that would have cost nothing at all — would have been to not scare the bejesus out of business in the first place during his campaign.

Obama talked of increasing capital gains taxes for reasons of “fairness,” even if it actually hurt government revenue. He talked of “spreading the wealth around.” He gave soaring speeches exalting the glory of the state and public service, while the contributions of business and capitalism were ignored. He treated “profit” like a four-letter word and promised to “raise taxes on the rich.” He made economically insane and historically ignorant arguments blaming the meltdown of the financial system on “capitalists” and “deregulation.”

Obama persuaded many small business people to pull in their horns and make plans to keep a low profile (including laying people off) in order to avoid the wealth confiscation of the populist, socialist, economic storm they saw coming with his election.

And that's where the engines of the economy are in America today: hiding from Obama and the chaotic uncertainty he brings to an otherwise efficient and reliably self-correcting system.

Adding today to that prevailing sentiment is Emerson Electric Co. CEO David Farr, who wants nothing to do with Obama's appetite for gorging on American corporate flesh:


Emerson Electric Co. Chief Executive Officer David Farr said the U.S. government is hurting manufacturers with regulation and taxes and his company will continue to focus on growth overseas.

“Washington is doing everything in their manpower, capability, to destroy U.S. manufacturing,” Farr said today in Chicago at a Baird Industrial Outlook conference. “Cap and trade, medical reform, labor rules.”

...Emerson, which Farr said employs about 125,000 people worldwide, has eliminated more than 20,000 jobs since the end of 2008 to lower expenses.
“What do you think I am going to do?” Farr asked. “I’m not going to hire anybody in the United States. I’m moving. They are doing everything possible to destroy jobs.”

...“We as a company today are putting our best people, our best technology and our best investment in these marketplaces to grow,” he said. “My job is to grow that top line, grow my earnings, grow my cash flow and grow my returns to the shareholders. My job is not to shrink and roll over for the U.S. government.”

No sane man in Farr's position is going to take any other view than that dictated by the bottom line, a concept Obama and his confiscatory zealots will never understand. Unlike the Carter years, when the effects of such disastrous mismanagement did not immediately become manifest, it happens in today's wired world at the speed of light.

So the smart money heads offshore to friendlier climes, leaving Obama and his fellow travellers to eventually face an increasingly hostile and vengeful electorate in its wake.

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