Looks like the Gaffe Master-in-Chief is at it again. Before a crowd of smitten, lovesick Obama Zombies™ in Roanoke, Virginia, the president said this:
“If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.”
That’s right, entrepreneurs and businessowners. You didn’t build that flourishing, lucrative, monkey-making enterprise of yours. You owe it all to the collective, and just so happened to hit the jackpot one day, you privileged, well-to-do sap. Too bad your fellow countrymen didn’t strike it rich in life. Too bad they didn’t get their break, like you did. Care to share some of that gold mine of riches you own with that raggedy kid down the street and his dirt-stained, poverty-stricken family?
Look at them cough up a storm over there. Look at the flies buzzing around the rags they wear for clothes. Look at the broken down shack they live in, and the termites crawling everywhere. Joe over there is making pennies on the hour at the sweatshop where he works, and his wife Mary Sue is trying to feed the kids on a teacher’s salary. A teacher’s salary! She only makes, like, $100,000 a year, you incorrigible, upscale corporate monopolist.
You aren’t spending that money on anything useful anyway. Just yachts, trips to the Bahamas – and, grrr … could you stop popping grapes in your mouth, sipping on your hundred-dollar glass of wine, and slapping your belly for just one minute? There are people suffering out there, and all you can think about is stuffing your mouth, going to your fancy cocktail parties, and schmoozing in the hot tub with your blonde-haired bimbos! How many mansions on the moon do you need? Do you ever even go to the moon!? Why do you have a cruise ship on the grass in your backyard, if you can’t set sail anywhere? Are you doing that just to show off to those cigar-smoking K-Mart executives down the street? What’s with the two-ton fish? Your wife’s golden beehive is highly offensive.
One glance at the way rich folks are portrayed on TV, and you’ll realize that there are people out there who actually think this. Gordon Gecko, the Crosswires, Richie Rich – satire is merely a reflection of the way we view things, in exaggerated form. The difference is that the script-writers and animators who put these productions together (well maybe not so much the filmmakers behind Wall Street) know they are bending the truth and overemphasizing things for comedic effect, as any good humorist does. But some juveniles believe everything they see on TV, and then go out on the street chanting inane things like, “We are the nine-diddy-nine percent,” “Kill teh bankerz!” and “Eat the rich. They taste like chicken!” Obama’s comments were the last straw for me, though. It literally makes want to tear my brains out. I think my IQ dropped, like, 90 points just hearing him say that. Especially considering that my parents own two businesses and have been busting their rear-ends for decades, supporting the pensions of public workers – who protest in the streets because they have to pay for their own health insurance now – and food stamps for welfare recipients, which they pay for disproportionately through their taxes, as do the other wealth-generators in our society.
Yes, entrepreneurs, you may have started out at the bottom, perhaps as a stock boy sweeping cement floors infested with trash and animal guts. You may have worked your way up, earning promotions by, you know – not skipping work just because you stubbed your toe, putting in more hours than your OK! Magazine-reading co-workers, saying exnay to vacations to your condo in Florida, and consistently punching in at the right time. You listened to instructions. You gave helpful hints and suggestions to the boss. You were loyal almost to a fault.
Eventually you were spinning in your management chair, getting dizzy looking at all the box-packers below and then having to answer stupid questions about whether your company makes Nintendos. Yes, you may have stayed at the office for 18 hours a day, hammering out company paperwork and wondering how in the world part of the retiree trust fund got spent on CareBear DVDs and concert tickets. And, then, after turning out the lights, as you kept telling yourself you were going to call it a day, you tossed and turned in your bed wondering how you were going to keep the finances in order and checks arriving in the mailboxes of shippers and suppliers of raw materials. And then you made payroll calculations in your sleep, like the good little corporate big shot you were.
Or maybe you went to a pompous university filled with (shudder) Che Guevara fans and Vladimir Lenin apologists for eight grueling years for a degree in engineering and science. You studied ‘round the clock while your friends guzzled down beer, stole rival football teams’ mascots, and gave the dean a hard time because well .. he had standards and only did what the college brats’ parents were paying him to do. After passing with flying colors, you went on to apply your newly acquired knowledge and skills in the rough-and-tuff business world. Maybe you were an inventor who thought up a new kind of toaster, medical device, computer program, security networking system or … squishy stress ball, so that other hard-working geniuses wouldn’t have to go through the same ordeal you did.
Or maybe you’re just that restaurant, grocery store, tavern, or ice cream shop owner who provides valuable services to the folks in your community – things like satisfying the random, unpredictable cravings of pregnant women (it’s hard work carrying a little person in your tummy for nine backbreaking months) and giving people an escape route from that hectic environment at work or home.
Either way, you sacrificed precious time that could have been spent doing so many other things. You risked your capital, took on mountains of debt, and put your resources on the line – and broke a sweat doing it. But hey, you didn’t build your business. The collective did.