Private Enterprise Wins


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A crucial winner not named on the ballot in the Nov. 2 election was private enterprise. It was symbolized by the election of business executives in several key offices. Their experience and view of public needs provide a sharp departure from the Obama Administration’s guiding philosophy that government knows best.

Among those elected, for example, were Ron Johnson, president of an Oshkosh, Wis., plastics company, to the Senate; Rick Snyder, CEO of a Michigan venture capital firm and former CEO of Gateway, Inc., as governor of Michigan; and Rick Scott, a health-care industry executive, elected governor of Florida.

Moreover, Rep. John Boehner (R-OH), destined to be Speaker of the House and a major political power wielder, is a former president of a packaging and plastics firm and certainly a free enterpriser. He will replace the anti-business Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif).

Private enterprise took the political stage dramatically nearly two years ago in the face of early socialistic actions of Obama and company. It came in the form of Ford Motor Company. Ford was the only one of the Big Three American auto companies to turn down government bailout money. It proved that, although capitalism was being smothered, it was still alive and kicking.

The massive election turnover in the House of Representatives Nov. 2 was widely acknowledged as a rejection of Obama Administration socialistic-inclined policies.

In his post-election news conference, Obama took some responsibility for his party’s disastrous showing. He did briefly mention that “the free market has to be encouraged.” But this comment was preceded by stating that business needed to follow “rules of the road,” obviously set by government.

Even though Obama also said he was willing to meet with Republicans and try to reach compromises, the over-hanging question is whether Obama can shake off his government-knows- best ideologically. It would be like asking a Zebra to lose its stripes. At his news conference, he refused to say that the election results reflected a rejection of his policies.

According to The Rasmussen Reports poll Nov. 2, found that 52 percent of likely voters believed that the election was more a referendum on the President’s agenda than about individual candidates and issues. Some 56 percent said Obama should change course. Yet 66 percent of those responding said they expected that Obama would not change, and instead “pursue the same agenda.”

U.S. Chamber of Commerce CEO Tom Donohue said: “Today Americans sent a powerful message to Washington: Focus on job creation and economic growth….We strongly agree with voters across the nation who clearly stated that a strong and vibrant private sector is critical to reviving our economy, creating jobs and putting us on a path to long-term growth…”The Chamber represents more than 3 million businesses of all sizes.

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  • Patrick Henry

    Several centuries ago, a French king ran short of funds to continue the endless wars against England and other neighbors. He directed his brightest advisors to encourage French businessmen to produce more so his coffers will be replenished. To his amazement, the plan backfired and reveneue fell more sharply. Finally, the king sent his top advisor to a meeting of businessmen and asked: 'what can we do to help you? The answer is now famous: "Laissez nous faire" ["Let us alone"].

  • Patrick Henry

    On a practical level, the problem is that highly (mis)educated people fall victim to the vainglorious idea that they can make decisions on behalf of millions of people better than they can, without any consideration for the bottleneck of information, the corruption, the disincentives, the conflicts of interest, nor the deliberative mental process of spending someone else's money rather than one's own. On the moral level, the problem is loss of liberty, an usurpation of individual rights…and thus the assertion by Ayn Rand that capitalism is the only moral system ever devised by man because it alone protects man's right to his life, his liberty and his pursuit of hapiness, all of which requires an undiluted protection of property rights vis a vis a strictly limited government.