Tag Archives: mitt romney

Job Emigration – Place Blame Where It Belongs

Gary Nolan (and THE Scrappy Doo)
Gary Nolan (and THE Scrappy Doo)

This past election, Barrack Obama and the DNC-loyals were attacking Mitt Romney and other business people for shipping jobs overseas. Like most patriotic Americans, it upsets me to see jobs leave the United States as well. But was this really a fair criticism of business owners?

No FartingAs a former entrepreneur myself, let me give you an analogy. This criticism is akin to farting while sitting next to me, then getting upset when I leave because you’ve made the room smell like three-month-old milk and despair.

If we were a statist nation like former Russia, China, Cuba, etc., businesses would exist to serve the state; something many on the left seem to wish were the case here—you know, the people who supported millionaire capitalist Michael Moore by attending his movies bashing capitalism yet fail to see the hypocrisy in that?

The reason I believe this idea is so ridiculous, is because despite my requests, not one of these people can name a statist nation whose people don’t live in absolute squalor. Note that Russia’s GDP has nearly quadrupled in the last 12 years, and they’re budding ideas on capitalism are still being ironed out. So I’ll be happy to consider statism a practical system of governance for maintaining quality of life and basic human rights when a successful example arises.

In our capitalist system however, businesses are the product of a risk an entrepreneur takes to offer a good or service to the public to make a living for themselves, as opposed to working at the behest of someone else. We all know that the greater the risk, the greater possibility for reward. This carrot on a stick is what makes entrepreneurs take such a risk.

Carrot On A StickSo to explain my flatulence analogy; America has the third highest corporate tax rate  on the planet. We also have one of the most intrusive regulatory networks as well, thanks to NHTSA, OSHA, the EPA, and other federal and local legislations and regulators. Add labor unions to that, which infect businesses like a cancer feeding off the host until the Hostess dies. All these roadblocks make America a very expensive place to do business. So how is it fair to blame people who leave America when we make it such an inhospitable place to do business?

Let’s ignore all the ideology for a moment and think about this skeptically and empathetically. What are some of the issues of doing business outside the United States?:

  • There are regulatory issues of your home country and the one you’re doing business in, requiring you to hire a plethora of compliance lawyers and staff just to make sure what you are doing is even legal.
  • Language barriers exist for nations that do not have English as their primary language.
  • Shipping, tariffs, and customs expenses increase.
  • Massive expenses in building a new facility and moving operations from a U.S. based plant to a foreign one.
  • Travel expenses increase for those headquartered in the United States that have to often visit overseas facilities.
  • Loss in quality assurances due to lack of direct oversight.

These are but a few issues I can think of off the top of my head; certainly there are many more. So if all these issues exist, why even do it? Because doing it is still more profitable than doing business here in the United States. Stop and think about that for a minute—let it fester in any liberty-minded bones you have in your body. If you’re like me, it should offend you to the core.

Because we are one of the richest nations in the world, American workers are not going to work for the pennies a day that some third world nations consider a reasonable salary, so if we intend to compete in the world market, you’d like to think our legislators would make every effort to overcome our higher wage demands by keeping corporate taxes and regulations as unobtrusive as possible so we can be competitive. Greater expenses make it more expensive to the consumer. Yet, during the election, the people like Mitt Romney were vilified as heartless rich bastards for attempting to rectify this.

I propose we start calling out those who want to bash the rich, playing the hero while doing it. This pure ignorance of economics, history, and logic is offensive. Our economy depends on people with money investing in American products and workers. But why would they when we treat them like dirt, tax them to hell and back, and regulate them like a dog on a choker chain dying to run ahead of its master?

Dog Pulling ON LeashIf you’ve ever been in the middle of a productive task and had someone interrupt to “help” you, only to slow you down and make matters worse, then you should inherently understand what government does to entrepreneurship every single day.

Unless we vote for liberty minded candidates, entrepreneurs will observe the basic physics principle of taking the path of least resistance. We have no one to blame but ourselves for electing and re-electing those who are content to push them away to pass “feel-good” legislation that is a product of jealousy as opposed to evidence based hypotheses. When emotion trumps logic, we all lose.

 
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Villainy is in the eye of the beholder: The myth of the heartless capitalist

Gary Nolan (and THE Scrappy Doo)
Gary Nolan (and THE Scrappy Doo)

If I am to believe the leftist view of us conservatives, we are clearly the most heartless bastards that ever walked the face of the Earth. I know in my heart who I am; I love my family, friends, and mankind as much as the next person. I’ve done my share of selfless acts, solely for the rewards of virtue—I am not an evil man. So I refuse to believe that I am the second coming of Satan because I’m a free-market capitalist.

Mitt Romney
Mitt Romney

Mitt Romney was vilified for saying, “I like to fire people,” but as is all too common, the context was usually missing from quotations of that speech. Only a stone-cold psychopath derives enjoyment from firing people. Romney’s charitable work rules that out if we apply logical evidence-based thought.

Often when people get fired, they have a hard time looking outside themselves at the situations surrounding the termination. I think most people have experienced coworkers whom they felt should be fired. Yet ask anyone who was fired if they feel it was justified, they will almost universally say no. Clearly, there’s a divide between how we perceive ourselves versus how we are perceived by others. We have a hard time accepting criticism, even in the face of overwhelming evidence to support it.

I could agree that it would be heartless to fire someone if we assume that person is incapable of ever finding another job, but we know that is completely untrue. Just as the saying goes that time heals all wounds, you’ll find that more often than not, these “professional divorces” worked out well for both parties in time. The company usually finds a more suitable employee, and the former employee often finds a more rewarding job as well.

Rarely is there a case where an employer and an employee are professional soul mates, and for no good reason, the employer decides to make a change for farts and giggles. Most people who get fired earned it through a lack of effort, poor attitude, sub-par performance, or immoral behavior. The proverbial model employee who gets fired at the whim of a heartless business executive is usually just the musings of Hollywood fiction writers and politicians with a statist agenda.

First and foremost, businesses exist purely as a source of income for the founder; a person who didn’t want to work for someone else, so they went into business for themselves. To believe business owners decided to start a corporation just so they could provide another random person some place to work is a rather silly notion. If they could get by without employees, they would and should.

From there, businesses succeed because they put the right people in the right positions to best grow their corporation. I know that the maintenance guy works his bedonkadonk off; he’s an honorable man. But let’s not make the fantastic assumption that he could step into the role of CEO and double the company profits with his notions of giving everyone a $5 an hour raise and spending $20,000 on a new floor polisher.

It’s not in a corporation’s best interest to fire the worker generating the greatest return on their investment. There are supreme idiots at the management level who make really poor decisions like that, but it’s certainly not the norm, or companies across the nation would be failing ad nauseam.

Stock Market DropA purely scientific and mathematical approach to employees is to understand that for a corporation, employees are simply an investment. A company spends money on a worker in hopes that worker generates more income than they take away. So think of employees as stocks and CEO’s as investors. Success depends on their ability to pick winners and sell off the losers.

Let’s assume for a minute that CEO’s adhered to the ideas of the left. Imagine a one-person company that does home restorations. They start getting good word of mouth advertising, orders pile up, and so they have to hire someone to help. That person arrives eager to work, but after the first day, he’s nailed his hand to the wall, painted a door shut, accidentally drilled through the plumbing causing a leak, and severed some wiring which blew out the circuit breaker panel. The employer has two options: fire him and hope the next hiree is better, or keep him and hope the business survives and he doesn’t accidentally kill everyone. I know that’s an exaggerated example, but the underlying truth is still the same that some employees are simply a liability, not an asset.

According to the anti-capitalist zealots, firing him is heartless and cruel. But from my perspective, him asking an employer to continue paying him even though he’s a huge loss and liability is heartless and cruel. But one should not hold their breath for a bad employee to emulate a disgraced samurai and fire themself in an act of corporate hari-kari; that requires honor unheard of these days.

So what about Mitt Romney? Venture capitalists (VCs) like him find dying companies and buy them for pennies on the dollar in hopes of righting the ship and selling them for dollars on the dollar. If they didn’t fire people, cut dead weight, and try to make better investments, everyone in that organization would lose their jobs. If the VC’s succeed however, they return a company to health, and everyone but those who were fired is saved. It may not be ideal for everyone, but it’s better than the alternative.

Coronary artery bypass surgery
Coronary artery bypass surgery

Think of venture capitalists as surgeons. To the uninformed who walked in on a surgery, it would appear the surgeon was a heartless murderer cutting someone to bits. But if they know the whole story, they understand that while plunging a scalpel into someone’s chest is usually a bad thing and that the patient will surely be weakened and sore for a while, the these painful and dangerous procedures save lives.

In these instances, firing 20% of the staff that are under-performing saves the other 80% from being dragged down with them. What the anti-capitalists call heartless, I call a painful, but life saving procedure. As the left attempt to decry successful capitalists, clear thinking Americans should understand that everyone who has a stable job can thank a successful capitalist.

The Myth Of Greedy Capitalists

I have this horrible recurring dream that millions of college students die from alcohol poisoning after playing a drinking game during an Obama speech. When he uses the word “fair-share,” they are required to drink a shot. (Please kids, don’t try this at home)

It is a well-known psychological trick that overuse of a word is often done with the purpose of being permanently associated with it through subliminal suggestion. I don’t profess to know what is in Obama’s heart, and you should be wary of anyone in the media who says they do. But I don’t believe it is an accident that he uses this word over and over again so that he may mildly brainwash everyone to believe he is the only candidate who cares about you getting a fair shot. Political strategists certainly know and would advise him to use such a tactic. Disingenuous or not, it is effective.Obama-golfing[1]

However, let’s take a look at this from a skeptical point of view and analyze what it presumes. If he is saying this as a means of promoting himself above another candidate, then that means he is also saying other candidates do not want you to have a fair shot. If they all believe in fairness, then there’s no more point in bringing it up, right? For instance, no candidate campaigns on the platform of prosecuting murderers because we all want that, and saying so, would not set that candidate apart from their competitors.

So this then means that, in selling himself as the candidate of fairness, Obama is asserting that Mitt Romney, a devout Mormon who donated his father’s inheritance to the church so that it could be used to help those less fortunate and so that he could earn his own way instead, somehow only wants rich people to succeed and poor people to stay poor. Is this narrative starting to sound pretty ridiculous yet?

Mitt Romney
Mitt Romney

Let’s dig a little deeper. How do rich people get rich? They sell products or services. The richest of the rich sell products to the masses. The late Enzo Ferrari likely made a pretty centesimo, but he was nowhere near the financial status of a Bill Gates for instance. If poor people stay poor, can they buy a Windows computer?

So if some conspiracy theorist is ignorant enough to believe that all rich people get together in some sort of bourgeois yacht club meeting and collude to keep the proletariat down, then explain to me how they benefit by impoverishing their intended customers.

The idea that rich people benefit from everyone else being poor only works in a socialist model where the rich can forcefully take from the poor, and force them into servitude, not a capitalist one where the rich depend on the masses to buy their goods.

I am to wealth what a McDonald’s Hamburger is to a steak. But I am increasingly disgusted with the idea that the boogeyman is synonymous with a capitalist. Because, while I may not be rich, I have goals and dreams that include becoming wealthy one day, and I’m not about to be told I’m a bad person for wanting it or that I’ll be a bad person if I attain it.

I believe everyone is a greedy capitalist. Some aren’t willing to work as hard as others, some aren’t willing to work as honestly as others, and some refuse to believe that people richer than them deserve more for their efforts. Apathy, jealousy, complacency, and sometimes just dumb luck prevent most of us from achieving our dreams. But we all want more than what we have, we all want success. Then, once we’ve achieved it, we all want control how it is shared with others.

So while I credit Obama with a smart tactic, and let’s not lie to ourselves, it is working with those who don’t bother to put a critical eye to it as I have done, it is still just a psychological trick, not an indication of someone who understands how to make America better through hard work, critical thinking, and an honest assessment of the historical evidence of socialism versus capitalism.

We know socialism has no successful models to point to, yet he promotes socialistic policies. We know that over-regulation causes business owners to pull their money into their proverbial turtle shell until the “predator” passes by instead of investing, hiring, and growing the economy, yet he pushes the EPA and OSHA farther and farther into territory they were never intended to occupy at the peril of every entrepreneur trying to become a productive part of America. We know that forcing people to be self-sufficient by kicking them out of the nest works, yet by advocating more entitlements instead of less, he continues to enable those who would rather be on a permanent government funded vacation.EPA-Logo

Ronald Reagan humorously quipped, “The best minds aren’t in government. If any were, business would hire them away.”

President Obama telling Romney how to help businesses grow, and vicariously our economy, seems to me like Obama telling Tiger Woods how to fix his golf swing. So you can vote for the guy that says he’ll solve all your problems for you, but I’ll vote for the guy who honestly says, “I don’t understand your problems as well as you do, so let me get the hell out of your way.”