Thursday, July 21, 2011

"I've Had It"

Among the super-rich who were trying to convince New Jersey Governor Chris Christie to run for president the other day was Bernie Marcus, co-founder of Home Depot. (See my prior post.)

Marcus may or may not have voted for Obama in 2008 because he was scared of Sarah Palin, but he has been one of the most outspoken critics of the current administration.

He has been most critical of the way this administration has been inhibiting economic growth. In an interview with Investor’s Business Daily, Marcus explained how the Obama administration is stifling job creation.

Asked to name the “biggest impediment” to job growth, Marcus answered: “The U.S. government. Having built a small business into a big one, I can tell you that today the impediments that the government imposes are impossible to deal with. Home Depot would never have succeeded if we'd tried to start it today. Every day you see rules and regulations from a group of Washington bureaucrats who know nothing about running a business. And I mean every day. It's become stifling.”

However, IBD avers, Obama has promised to streamline and eliminate regulations.

Marcus replies: “His speeches are wonderful. His output is absolutely, incredibly bad. As he speaks about cutting out regulations, they are now producing thousands of pages of new ones. With just ObamaCare by itself, you have a 2,000 page bill that's probably going end up being 150,000 pages of regulations.”

The point is worth underscoring, especially for those who are so blinded by Obama’s charisma that they still believe that he means what he says.

I and many others have discussed this before, but the fact that Obama’s words are empty needs to be underscored. A leader who cannot be counted on to keep his word, who makes it up as he goes along, who says whatever is expedient, cannot be trusted and cannot lead.

But, IBD asks, what would Marcus say to Obama if he had a chance to talk to him in person.

Marcus replies: “I'm not sure Obama would understand anything that I'd say, because he's never really worked a day outside the political or legal area. He doesn't know how to make a payroll, he doesn't understand the problems businesses face. I would try to explain that the plight of the businessman is very reactive to Washington. As Washington piles on regulations and mandates, the impact is tremendous. I don't think he's a bad guy. I just think he has no knowledge of this.”

Coming from a titan of American industry and job creation, this is not too encouraging.

But why haven’t more business leaders spoken out; why are they not standing up and explaining the situation to the public?

Marcus tells it like it is: “They are frightened to death — frightened that they will have the IRS or SEC on them. In my 50 years in business, I have never seen executives of major companies who were more intimidated by an administration.”

If you were tempted to believe that the Obama administration was pro-business, you have seriously missed the point.

What is Marcus doing about it? He has created an organization called the Job Creator’s Alliance. Through it he will encourage business leaders to speak out against the Obama administration. He wants people to stand up and say: “I’ve had it.”

We can only wish him Godspeed.

7 comments:

David said...

I don't think he's a bad guy. I just think he has no knowledge of this”

and

“They are frightened to death — frightened that they will have the IRS or SEC on them. In my 50 years in business, I have never seen executives of major companies who were more intimidated by an administration.”

These two statements do not go well together. If a politician who based his administration on the intimidation of American citizens is not "a bad guy," then what exactly does it take for a guy to qualify as bad?

Stuart Schneiderman said...

I think you are absolutely right. I assumed that Marcus was just paying lip service to the way most people see Obama... it's tough enough defeating the policies without getting into serious character flaws... especially when most people do not really see them.

CatherineM said...

Agree with David. Holder and Obama and their minions definitely do things the Chicago way - retribution. I believe at times people in his admin (perhaps even Obama himself)have made "joking" threats. Then there's the "don't call my bluff" business. He would rather stop payments social security than lose an argument.

Don't expect anyone outside of IBD or Fox to showcase the founder of Home Depot's position. To the rest of the MSM, he's evil and doesn't pay enought and blah blah blah.

The Ghost said...

the line about fearing the IRS or the SEC coming after you really makes the hair on my neck stand up ...

Stuart Schneiderman said...

It's astonishing... and as CatherineM notes, it is surely the Chicago way.

Of course, Bernie Marcus is retired so he can speak out, but Steve Wynn basically said the same thing the other day.

I am grateful to both of them because they have the credibility and the contacts that allow them to report what is going on in the business world. Many of the rest have probably been cowed into silence.

contactos said...

Quite effective info, thank you for the post.

Anonymous said...

"Coming from a titan of American industry and job creation, this is not too encouraging."

Job creation? So where did people buy stuff before Home Depot existed? Other smaller businesses perhaps? How are those Mom and Pop businesses doing now?
Wait, you say that Home Depot serves the market more efficiently? Efficient in reducing the amount of labor required to sell a given amount of product?
How is this net job creation? It looks more to me like wealth concentration in the hands of the Marcuses of the US. You know, so that they can buy more government to benefit themselves.