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President Obama, Democrats must stop demonizing success

Terry Garlock's picture

It is perhaps ironic that Steve Jobs, cofounder of Apple Inc., died last week at the same time anti-capitalist signs and chants were televised from the leftist protests called “Occupy Wall Street.” The demonstrators demanded jobs and railed against corporations, testimony to their own ignorance of where their jobs and the products they use come from.

To paraphrase some demonstrators’ sentiments, can’t we all just share our country’s bounty instead of some getting rich while others remain stuck in poverty?

Of course that implies we should be a collective society even though individualism is the founding principle of America. Those who truly believe in collectivism should visit Cuba or study the history of Jamestown four hundred years ago. Besides, the country’s bounty is not static, it multiplies in a growing economy.

One interviewed demonstrator spokeswoman insisted corporations should not be receiving so much money unless they use it to create jobs instead of enriching themselves, suggesting there must be a nanny in the sky passing out money, never mind the misunderstanding of how jobs are made.

I suppose the root problem is we have done a miserable job teaching to recent generations the virtue of capitalism and how it works, and if uneducated you have to overcome the tug of your heart and use your head to come to the right conclusion.

Steve Jobs was the demonstrators’ fellow liberal, but as a capitalist he was a titan, leaving huge footprints. I remember very well when he and his partner, Steve Wozniak, started what would become the personal computer revolution, creating in their garage the first product that would fulfill their dreams of making tons of money and in the process they changed the world. You and I were the beneficiaries of the tidal wave of products that followed and spread worldwide.

In more recent years Jobs and Apple have given us the iPod, iPad, touch phones and many other products. While Jobs and his partner became wealthy beyond your wildest dream, I wonder how many thousands of people had a job, or a career, not only at Apple, but in the tens of thousands of other companies that jumped into the ocean of opportunity created by these two men.

By their continued vision, these entrepreneurs created not just a successful product, they created an industry that kicked in the afterburner of human productivity.

What an epitaph – Steve Jobs made the world a better place!

And he did it all in the pursuit of more-more-more money. Call it greed if you like, but that is our capitalist system, harnessing the self-interest of each individual to motivate imagination, innovation and hard work.

New businesses are started when someone has a dream, the desire to take a risk and try to make a product or deliver a service, something that works so well it becomes profitable. Most new business ventures fail, but if it succeeds and blossoms, that new business owner will have to hire people to help get the job done as he hopes to make tons of money.

That, of course, is how jobs are created in America, no matter what the politicians say.

In many cases the entrepreneur needs funding (capital), so venture capitalists bring investors to the table to buy a piece of the business, to become shareholders in a corporation, each one hoping to make an obscenely handsome profit. Everyone who owns a 401k, IRA or pension is likely one of these investors.

If the business succeeds and grows very large, eventually it will need highly skilled executives to guide and execute the business strategy, to select, manage and motivate employees.

The problem is the pool of the best among these executives is small, and the ones desired are already employed elsewhere. So recruiters specializing in executive search find the right people and entice them with piles of money in salary and bonuses that would make Jed Clampett blush, and golden parachute packages that guarantee them many millions even if they are fired. These executives are the ones the public loves to despise, having no understanding of why they are paid so much.

There is much risk in a new business. Along the capitalist highway are littered bone-piles of failed and dead ideas. We know what motivates entrepreneurs to take the risk trying to make their visions come true – the pursuit of wealth – and investors buy shares of corporations for the same reason, weighing the risk of loss against the profit potential.

Visions, dreams, taking a risk of terrible loss in hopes of making lots of money, that is the American economic engine, a competitive process that has turned on the lights of the world, raised transportation and communication and entertainment to an extraordinary level, made our lives more comfortable in a thousand ways. And all this has happened as a by-product of people pursuing their own self-interest.

We need regulation to set boundaries for corporate behavior, but there is a delicate balance to strike. Anything that discourages these entrepreneurs and investors from taking those risks should be of grave concern to us, because if they put their visions on hold, if they withhold their investable capital to keep it safe on the sideline, America’s economic engine will slow down, just as it has in recent years. What are those things that put the brakes on our capitalist system?

• More and more regulation that slows productivity and increases costs

• Higher taxes

• Uncertainty in Washington, D.C., about more taxes and regulation

• Class warfare that demonizes success

• Anti-business government rhetoric

• Government intervention into industry, like the shutdown of oil drilling in the Gulf of Mexico.

Sound familiar? At least the Obama Administration is consistent – they do ALL the wrong things! This is why President Obama preaching about job creation is a farce of the highest order.

His administration is the most anti-business of any in my lifetime, creating mountains of new regulation and relentlessly trying to raise taxes on the high-income people who invest and create jobs.

Is it any wonder investors are keeping their capital on the sideline? Is it any wonder entrepreneurs have put their dreams on hold until the fog of uncertainty lifts? And with each postponed and withheld business move, jobs that would have been created ... are not.

All the stimulus spending in the world won’t break the jobs creation logjam. The dam will break only when this administration is gone, when the uncertainty is lifted in a more business-friendly environment.

It’s easy to demonize corporations, especially when our government is using our money to bail out banks, insurance companies, auto companies and state employee payrolls. It’s easy to demonize wealthy executives while we are paid so little by comparison. It’s easy to go too far with regulation and taxes that induce American companies to move jobs overseas.

It’s easy for President Obama to blame his predecessor, to blame Wall Street for causing our economic mess when in reality the cause was arguably decades-long liberal government policies requiring banks to lend to unqualified borrowers.

It’s easy for “Occupy Wall Street” demonstrators to forget that Wall Street is now Main Street where all of us are investors and should hope for entrepreneurs to succeed.

It’s easy for the President to point the finger of blame at high-income people demanding they pay more taxes even while Washington fails to eliminate duplicate, wasteful and unnecessary spending, even while his own administration has set new records in spending, even while politicians fail to tackle the unsustainable entitlement programs they have used to buy our votes.

The people marching in the streets demanding jobs might be enlightened if they give some thought to what President John F. Kennedy said about lowering taxes in order to promote business expansion, “A rising tide lifts all boats.”

It is that simple. Unleash entrepreneurs and investors, and the job creation machine goes to work.

This president working on jobs stimulus programs is the very definition of futility. There is only one thing President Obama can do to stimulate the creation of jobs.

Get the hell out of the way so we can celebrate success once again and stoke the fires of America’s business furnace.

[Terry Garlock of Peachtree City occasionally contributes a column to The Citizen. His email is]


kevink's picture

those links :-). You sure those weren't anti-police union GOP activists?

Vote Mytmite in 2012!

PTC Observer's picture

is it that we always talk about raising the effective tax rate for the rich and we never discuss the need to lower the secretary's effective rate?

Seems we have it backward, don't you think? Let's let everyone keep more of their money.

all able-bodied military veterans should be immediately stripped of their life-long pensions and medical plans, which are a HUGE unfunded liability for working taxpayers, their children, grand children, and great grand children. This falls under your notion that government should be run like a business, which means chopping the unfunded pension and medical plans of ALL government employees--past, present, and future; military and postal; republican, democrat, or TEA! When GM first ran into trouble, they shafted retirees by ditching their unfunded liabilities in an effort to save the company! And, as you and I know, what's good for GM is good for America! I applaud your continued efforts to try and stamp out socialism wherever it may be--in Vietnam or in the cozy retirement plans of military vets and other government workers! We need more like you!

Keep up the good work!

kcchiefandy's picture the latest popular iteration circling the Hill is a 401K-style 'pay-in' retirement that is matched by Uncle Sam, and for those who don't reach the 20-year mark the accumulated assets roll into their SS accounts. This plan allows non-career service members an incentive to serve but yet take something with them. Of course, these accounts are tied to the stock market, so in light of the recent dive(s), I don't believe most current DoD members are completely on board w/ it.

As for medical coverage, still a great benefit but co-pays & costs are ever-increasing. I imagine the solution here will be to keep raising the cost(s) for retirees. I'd prefer to see the civilian gov't workforce take the brunt any major increase, depending on what they do, i.e. the CIA & FBI put themselves at risk, too.

As for 'able-bodied' vets, I'd have to defer to your medical training to determine who or what that might be - is PTSD worth less than losing a leg? Is a crushed vertabrae from a airborne jump worth more than repaired knee from years of running? I dunno - I'll leave that to your expertise. Maybe combat zone service could be a requirement, but then the Ft. Hood victims would get zip...

Sorry the Falcons couldn't hang w/ the Pack; heck, they practically spotted the Birds 14 pts!!

Good to hear that someone is on the case for ending socialism among military retirees! Why fight it in foreign lands only to embrace it at home! As for able bodied, only Purple Heart winners get free medical for life!

As for the Falcons, I think they would be hard pressed to beat Our Lady of South Bend this year!

Go Chiefs!

Yes, school-trained but then cross-trained as a Duffy when I got into the field. Spent many wonderful yrs at isolated Detachments in Germany.

kcchiefandy's picture

Augsburg here; almost 4 yrs. Loved it; would go back in a minute!

Bad Aibling 60-65 (3 tours of different lengths at DF Site at Memmingen in those yrs)
Bad Aibling 68-71 (whole tour as NCOIC at Memmingen)
Augsburg/Wobeck/Berlin 74-77 (10 months in Augsburg as WNCO, 17 Months in Wobeck as First Sergeant, rest of time in Berlin as WNCO)
Heidelberg 83-86 Civilian SIGINT Officer on G2 Staff.
Andy, there were no intel folks in Ulm. In Bad Toelz, only a 10-12 person Special Operations Detachment (all ASA guys) in spt of the SF Group there.

hutch866's picture

I was born in Augsburg, all those many years ago.

I yam what I yam

BHH's picture

It was clear you weren't from around here.


You might go back but you won't find any Americans there now---ALL gone!

kcchiefandy's picture

...gave it all back to the Herms! You might want to check out this Yahoo group; you might know some here, may want to join it:

kcchiefandy's picture

...we gave it all back! You might want to check out the FS Augsburg Yahoo group:

BHH's picture

You are right on the target.

It seems government education and programs have created a class of ignorant uneducated idiots who are given low interest loans to attend college instead of rewarding those who seek to achieve the greater good that education can provide.


One is certainly free to worship some unfettered capitalism and a free market god in the sky but there are so many problems with that viewpoint that I cannot comment on all of them here.

Very few businessmen are like Steve Jobs although they may want to think they are. Most businessmen are good, hard working people who hope to make a decent living and support their families. The operations of their gas stations, insurance companies, pizza places, not involve the kind of vision Jobs had.

And Jobs with all of this vision, moved the manufacturing of his products to China costing America thousands of jobs. No one mentions this when praising Jobs.

The USA was not foundeed on such a view of capitalism or the free market. How many times are capitalism or the free market mentioned in the U. S. Constitution? Answer: none. But "We the People" and the "General Welfare" are clearly there.

The founders were so unaware of the free market god in the sky that one of the first Acts of Congress was the Tariff Act of 1789. And revenues from tariffs were the chief source (80-95%) of revenue for the Federal Government for many decades. So much for that patriotic free market god.


kcchiefandy's picture

...but given the lack of support from states in our beginnings, such Acts were necessary to allow for the survival of our fledgling country. If not for the Federalist party, the 'US' would have probably evolved into little more than petty localities and influenced/usurped by more established elements such as France, Britain, or Spain. The need for a strong central gov't was clearly seen by GEN Washington, who had to beg, borrow, & steal to outfit an army because individual states refused to pony up $$$ to pay their share of the revolutionary cost. Hindsight judgements are just silly, in retrospect. Freedom to chase one's success was the goal & hope; the free market grew out of that mindset. Lais·sez-faire government was the guiding principle of the time after our installation on the world stage, and was the primary catalyst to the success of the USA. Check with your Comrades and ask how their system worked out...

[QUOTE]Lais·sez-faire government was the guiding principle of the time after our installation on the world stage, and was the primary catalyst to the success of the USA[/QUOTE]

. . . AND WHERE ARE WE TODAY? The world's greed and lack of principle/principal has led us to this point - we need to base our economical principles on today's world. No one's system is doing okie-dokie -right?

Well, we know that 'hope and change' was a dismal failure and will be glad to see it tossed out of the White House in 2012.

We're still here and moving in the right direction. Returning to your ideology is foolish . . And Americans aren't foolish. Those who want to see this president fail have proven that they don't care about the average citizens in this country. ABO? How about Cain? Have you sent in your financial support?

What do you mean "want" to see this president fail? He has already failed on his own. The great experiment in electing 'hope and change', along with his socialist/marxist principles that he learned from attending Wrights black liberation theology church has proven to be a failure.

I already have sent and continue to send my contributions to Herman Cain. I am not for electing anybody but Obama, however a turnip could beat him at this point.

kcchiefandy's picture economies cycle and issues arise, and are dealt with as needed. We, the USA, are still the economic kings of the world, even through this downturn. No other economy comes within half of our strength; the whiners & criers and doomsday prophets have all been seen before. We will get through this and be as strong, if not stronger, than before. What 'today's world economic principles' are you suggesting - share the wealth? Straight communism or socialism? Please enlighten us on what system is currently working better than capitalism? The 'world's greed'...pshhhsshh, pleeeasse.

[quote]What 'today's world economic principles' are you suggesting - share the wealth[/quote]. NO !

Capitalism in a democratic society - implemented with integrity and honesty. The key to the success of any implementation is INTEGRITYand HONESTY. Follow the rules, provide equal access to opportunity, respect the worker, reward success. Communism and socialism did not do this with integrity. . . and so failed . China is combining capitalism with communism. If we don't institute integrity and honesty into American democratic capitalism, we will lose our #1 status IMHO.

kcchiefandy's picture specifically what has been done (by major corporations/banks, I assume), that was done w/o integrity & honesty? The trade & sell of sub-prime loans that were a major catalyst of the bubble-burst? Sure, but the PEOPLE who took those loans were either stupid or GREEDY, purchasing properties they KNEW they couldn't afford. The bailouts, yes, that may have been wrong, or right, but then again how many workers did we want to add to the unemployment lines? And those loans are being readily repaid, from what I've read.

Other than that, please tell us what was done. If you don't like how you're treated by a business, etc...then DON'T deal with them. I dumped BOA as my bank years ago because their customer service was garbage; I'm now w/ a small, local bank.

According to a poll published today 94% of responders are thinking of dropping their current bank. The progress made since 2008 has been slow but steady. I think Republicans need to stop demonizing success-and be a part of the recovery.

kcchiefandy's picture stated, I dropped mine. If our Federal gov't would stop spending and borrowing us into the 31st century, we'd recover much quicker. Can't drive far on an empty's to getting the tax & spenders out of our gov't - Cain in '12!!!

NUK_1's picture

Good, do it then! I have a feeling it will be more like 5% and the vast majority will just whine about it and then do nothing as usual. Some will say "Big Brother HELP ME! Save me from my dumb self!" but most will do absolutely nothing.

In FC, anyone living in the county can join Delta Credit Union. Seems like a great alternative to the behemoths of suck like BOA and Wells Fargo. Of course, you have to actually DO SOMETHING instead of just whining.

I think you're right - but I can't afford to whine and do nothing! I'll be among your 5% !

NUK_1's picture

Maybe people will WAKE THE HELL UP and realize they have choices/alternatives in this still somewhat free market economy when it comes to who you use for banking and you don't have to eat extra fees from your bank.

I love the last line of this article:
“They have every right to make a profit,” he said of the banks. “I also have every right to take my money out of there, and that’s what I did.”

HELL YES! That's what I'm talking about! People need to stop whining all the time and take action like this educated person did.

The store was robbed. The owner should have had a better security system! Blame the victim? Hmmmmmm.

kcchiefandy's picture

..that reaaalllyy went over my head! I don't get what you meant to say. If, you mean the corps. (et al), robbed the 'public', please do explain. Certainly some corps/businesses aren't innocent in some of their dealing, but I'd bet most are. They have stockholders to answer to, and aggressively attend to their markets, etc... Please provide, again, some specifics where they broke the law(s) and really screwed the 'public'. I'm sure there's something out there that the 'Occupiers' have to rant about. Please, again, do let us know; I'm busy and haven't perused the papers, web, etc...for these nasty stories.

Ever hear of Enron or Chase or ???????????? Why did you leave BOA? If you believe that they all deal with integrity and honesty, fine. Their investors are interested in one thing - profit. That's business, and as we have seen, not everyone operates with integrity. Ever hear of a CEO 'cooking the books'. Some have accused some of our legislators of this activity .
I wish your vision of our corporate world was reality.

kcchiefandy's picture

...they are great examples of corporations go awry. Now, shall we discuss the THOUSANDS other that are not so scurrilous? I imagine their employees aren't complaining too much. If you want to trust politicians to 'right the ship' as it were, I suggest you look at the Chicago machine the Daley built, and Obama gravitated to; talk about scurrilous...

Damn, you're blogging early---you musta worked a Mid!

Good morning. Check the dates of kc's blogs.

Or, according to some bloggers here - Fayette County Commission or PTC Council or Fayette County BOE. Good and bad - everywhere right?

Sorry that went over your head:
You said:

[quote]Sure, but the PEOPLE who took those loans were either stupid or GREEDY, purchasing properties they KNEW they couldn't afford. The bailouts, yes, that may have been wrong, or right, but then again how many workers did we want to add to the unemployment lines?[/quote]

I replied:

[quote]The store was robbed. The owner should have had a better security system! Blame the victim? Hmmmmmm.[/quote]

Come on - you get it - you just don't want to let us know how intelligent and perceptive you can be. Have a great day!!

Share the wealth has been going on a long time in America--at least 30 years.

The middle class and poor have given of their meager wealth to the affluent and rich.

Incomes for the middle class have declined steadily. Corporations and their CEOs have prospered. And the comfortable have not paid their fair share. (I would like to take a group of Fayette County middle class citizens on a tour of Naples, FL for example and simply ask the question: Are these people taxed enough?)

Companies have eliminated traditional pensions and pocketed the corporate contributions to these pension funds.

Health insurance costs for workers have risen as employers have passed more of these costs to their employees.

Companies have demonized unions which have traditionally obtained benefits for middle class families.

Many middle class home owners, who were encouraged to follow the American dream (remember Bush's ownership society?}, are facing foreclosure or paying for a house which is worth far less than they paid for it.

Thirty years ago a middle class family could send their children to a state university with some modest sacrifice and their child working. Today those middle class students, if they can get into a state university or college, will graduate with a huge student loan debt. A debt probably owed to a private sector lender.

If you wonder what the Wall Street protests are about, think hard about how the economic climate for the average American has declined in recent decades.

Those simple minded retorts that middle class complaints are just socialism or communism are just stupid.

Someone had to finally stand up and say that things in America now are wrong. Maybe the Wall Street protesters have started something.


why a basically 'middle class' conservative segment of society since 2008 can't see the truth of lion's words. The segment quietly protesting against Wall Street 'get it'.

kcchiefandy's picture

We - even the poor - have the highest standard of living in the WORLD! As for your 'middle class college' comments, many of those students would be better served obtaining a skill and bring manufacturing - the source of America's greatness - back to prominence; the American educational system is a farce for many degree programs. Given, the technology sector is a vital new arena for our economy, but even that field is getting somewhat overpopulated. Gee, I can't believe I can't find a job with my Sociology, or Psychology, degree! I've seen many college grads that can barely do basic math.

Teach our kids the value of hard work - again. The 'entitled' mindset needs to end - NOW. Employ standards in HS - again - and make a college degree worth something again; not an online diploma mill.

Cyclist's picture

this gobbledygook that taxing the rich will solve all the problems.

Caution - The Surgeon General has determined that constant blogging is an addiction that can cause a sedentary life style.

kevink's picture

No one is saying just raising taxes on the rich will fix everything. Don' t twist the 'balanced approach' argument. Facts are most of our tax rates have not been as low as they are now in our lifetimes. Yet we have the Taxed Enough Already movement.

Facts are the middle class is shrinking, the number of poor is growing, and the wealthiest 1% control 50% of American wealth. So what do middle class conservatives support?
Lowering the tax rate of the wealthy to 9%.
Imposing a consumption tax that will tax those currently not making enough to have an income tax.
Cutting govt spending and services that help the poorest among us and the elderly.

What are YOU buying into? What will 999 republican's vision mean for America?

Here's the funny thing: The ultra rich have had middle class conservatives in their pockets for so long you protect the rich types seem to not even notice the outcome of trickle down policies in the past. Herman Cain has worked with the Koch brothers since 2005, often being paid. But it's nowhere on his resume. Interesting. They have been anti union and anti regulation since the dawn of time, because their interests are profits above all. There is a Koch brothers chemical plant east of Enid we call the cloud factory due to the pollution. They want the FREEDOM to pollute more. They want to be regulated less. They have you as one of their many defenders. And that most likely does not seem odd to you at all, does it?
Protect the Koch brothers and their corporate candidate while attacking teachers' unions, govt programs that help the poorest among us, and healthcare for the least of these, to me, = gobbledygook.

Vote Mytmite in 2012!

Live in areas like Fayette County - so they don't suffer the de-regulated activities that are apparent to those who can't afford to move to 'greener pastures'. It's interesting how some here have not 'heard' of the activities of the Koch brothers. (But they can afford to have a great PR team) I'm sure they'll make sure that Cain's coffers receive some 'Koch' funds. Everyone deserves 'clean' air; honest/concerned representation. Wow - this is going to be a long, long election period.


PTC Observer's picture

is FoxNews!

Please link us all to your facts concerning Mr. Cain's connections to the Koch brothers. some facts, not opinions please.

Great Day in America - I couldn't go this time.


PTC Observer's picture

for the respect, so I guess there are no facts to back up your statements about the Koch brothers?


Oh, I answered -but had too many links and was dropped from service. Google Cain Koch brothers. Lots of reading!

Must be right on target!

This is just the latest lame attempt to demonize Herman Cain. This stuff is right of of Saul Alinsky's rules for radicals.

Apparently it is now a bad thing to be for prosperity in America as Hermans ties to AFP are being attacked, this being in stark contrast to Obama's apparent goals for our country. Let's hope the Koch bros do come thru with the cash! -GP

kevink's picture

Pointing out Herman Cain's long ties to and paychecks from the Koch brothers is not an attack. Ask yourself why he has kept 6 years of working with them off of his resume. That's just odd.
The Koch brothers created Americans for Prosperity to funnel wheel barrows of cash to folks like Cain. I wouldn't take the title they made up too literally. Again, if the Koch brothers are for the people types of guys, why hide your long standing business relationship with them? Someone should ask the VAT tax guy about that.

Vote Mytmite in 2012!

Maybe Someone should ask Obama about his Communist/Marxist relationships?


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