If I didn’t know better, I might conclude that President Obama is trying to validate my book. His personal attacks on Mitt Romney have been so harsh that Romney called them “beneath the dignity of the presidency.”
Not only did I devote several chapters to documenting Obama’s practice of bullying and attacking his political opponents but my final chapter, uncannily, details Obama’s “War on the Dignity of His Office.”
Having presided over 41 straight months of unemployment above 8 percent and possessing no arrows in his economic quiver besides deficit spending and raising taxes, it’s not surprising Obama continues to resort to these gutter tactics.
What finally drew Romney’s ire was Obama’s accusing Romney of committing a felony and then Obama’s refusing to apologize. This is simply Chicago Thug Politics 101. President Obama’s favorite whipping boy, President George W. Bush, would have never stooped to this level. Even in the face of brutal, scurrilous attacks, Bush refused to diminish the dignity of the office.
In recent days, Obama also provided supplemental material for my chapter detailing his “War on Business” by revealing, yet again, his attitude toward the private sector, entrepreneurship and business. He told a crowd in Roanoke, Va., “If you’ve got a business — you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.”
His apologists will say his remarks were taken out of context, but I’m afraid that’s not the case. Though no one can deny Obama’s assertion that all successful people have benefited from others — teachers and other mentors — the thrust of his remarks was directed at crediting government with having an indispensible role in the success of businesses.
Watch the video. He referred wistfully to the Clinton years as a period of unbridled economic growth — and he attributed that growth to tax increases on the “wealthy.” He said that during those years, “we created a lot of millionaires.” We? Created? In other words, government created a lot of millionaires; it wasn’t their ingenuity, and it certainly wasn’t their “hard work” — a point he made emphatically clear. The government’s infrastructure, its roads and bridges, said Obama, created the climate for businesses to thrive. Oh, boy.
This is Obama’s orientation. This is his mindset. He believes that government is the granddaddy of business and not the other way around. He was very explicit in his Osawatomie, Kan., speech that capitalism can’t work without extensive government regulations and that businesses don’t flourish on their own. They can only succeed when jump-started by infusions of government money and wisdom. Does it ever occur to him that there would be no government if businesses and individuals weren’t pouring their revenues into the federal coffers?
Despite Obama’s insistence that he is a fierce advocate of the free market and his fanfare about streamlining government regulations, he has amassed regulations at an unprecedented rate, dwarfing all previous presidents, including George W. Bush. Indeed, his burdensome regulatory and tax policies have businesses paralyzed in an anxiety-shaped straightjacket and scared to death to expand because of the stifling atmosphere of uncertainty.
During his term, employment at federal agencies has increased, while it has been abysmal in the private sector. He has demonized the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and savaged the private jet industry, causing major damage to that industry and costing thousands of jobs. He has inspired an adversarial, even hostile, climate between labor unions and management, exemplified by his National Labor Relations Board’s trying to prevent Boeing from opening up a new manufacturing plant in another state.
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.”
George Buckley, CEO of 3M, said: “We know what his instincts are. … He is anti-business.” Steve Wynn, CEO of Wynn Resorts, said: “This administration is the greatest wet blanket to business and progress and job creation in my lifetime. And I can prove it. … Everybody complains about how much money is on the side in America.”
Even Obama’s attacks against Romney are mostly grounded in Obama’s antipathy toward Romney’s success in business and Obama’s innate hostility toward the private sector.
Obama’s punitively anti-business policies have made it very difficult for businesses to flourish and for job growth to occur. His anti-business attitude and rhetoric have poisoned the market that much more.
If and when Obama is defeated in November, we should anticipate an explosion in business and entrepreneurial activity among ordinary Americans who realize they’re about to be liberated from the most anti-business president in our history.