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Section A: General News


Editorial: Businesses want to give back, but not to Uncle Sam




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About politics and other things
July 25, 2012 | 1,555 views | Post a comment

“If you’ve got a business -- you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.” This is what President Barack Obama said July 13 in a speech to supporters in Roanoke, Va.

So, does that mean that someone else worked the 20-hour days to get the business going?

Someone else took a personally guaranteed loan to make the business succeed?

Someone else maxed out credit cards to keep the business going?

Someone else lay awake nights worrying about how the bills would be paid?

Someone else had the vision, the concept, the idea, the plan for getting the business going?

Someone else went without a salary and without vacations so that all the money could go back into building the business?

The government does not create jobs or build businesses. Government uses our money and redistributes it. It is true, of course, that businesses take advantage of paved streets and government infrastructure, just as Obama said, but so does every other American citizen whether or not they have a business. In fact, Obama has it exactly backward. It’s business taxpayers who have paid for the infrastructure in the first place -- not the other way around.

Obama condescendingly said that successful business people must think they are “pretty smart” and have worked harder than anybody else, but a lot of people are smart and work hard. That alone does not guarantee success, and it’s incorrect to equate owning a business with success.

Some choose, for instance, to buy another car or go on vacation. They may choose the security of a job instead of enduring the stress of not knowing how the bills will be paid. They choose a 40-hour week instead of working the long hours demanded by starting their own business, and they can still be successful.

But to claim, as did Obama, that “if you’ve got a business ... somebody else made that happen,” denigrates the small-business engine that has propelled America’s economy.

Obama said, “Look, if you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own.” That’s true, of course. Along the way, you reached out to the rest of your family. You found talented and competent people to work in the business, and you paid them a salary that you could afford.

Obama also said, “There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me, because they want to give something back.”

Yes, businesses want to give back to their community -- the community that supports their business and walks through their doors to spend money with their business.

That’s why businesses give back to the Lions Club, the Rotary, the Chambers of Commerce, the 4-H Clubs, the Boys and Girls Clubs, the Little League teams, the soccer teams, the church festivals, all the other civic societies, and the many, many community projects whose organizers come knocking on our doors.

Businesses choose to give back to their community, instead of to Washington. They’ve paid enough taxes already and don’t want any more going to Washington to be squandered on failed green projects or trips to campaign fund-raisers aboard Air Force One at a cost of $180,000 an hour.

Without business growth and production, Washington will run out of money to fund all those “infrastructures.” Businesses have had to tighten their belts, and it’s time Washington does the same.
 

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