Gay Patriot Header Image

Did anyone catch the president’s speech to Chamber of Commerce?

Had it on for a few minutes while I was puttering around the apartment.   Found the delivery so dull and his manner so self-righteous, I had to turn it off.  He seemed to be going through the motions, reading a prepared text rather than engaging his audience.

When I did watch it, he bemoaned the fact that businesses are shipping jobs overseas and praised those companies building new factories in the United States.  Maybe I missed it, but did he express any understanding of the role our own tax and regulatory policies play in the choices businesses make to “send jobs overseas”?  Did he propose reducing regulations which make it costly to hire new employees and to run a plant efficiently.

Let me know if I missed anything.

As soon as I find the transcript, I’ll link it, but did find this good critique (not of the speech but of the president’s similarly-themed Saturday radio address) in my first quick search.

UPDATE:  Michelle Malkin has more.



  1. Dan, sorry to threadjack but did you see this on Hotair? The poll results are very interesting. It’s GOPac related.

    Comment by The_Livewire — February 7, 2011 @ 1:00 pm - February 7, 2011

  2. Unless your business is IN the business of milking the tax payer for every dime you can get I don’t understand how any businessman would ever give this man the time of day. Any of them that do should be taken to the nearest mental health facility for immediate evaluation. Though now that I think of it, Obamacare does have that wonderful mental health plan. Perhaps this is just their way of finding the ‘producers’ in society and getting them their custom fit monitoring devices. Can’t have those folks out there messing all those carefully laid ‘PLANS’ now can we?

    Comment by Delusional Bill — February 7, 2011 @ 1:40 pm - February 7, 2011

  3. There was a time I would listen to a presidential speech or event then turn off the TV…I didn’t need the pundits to tell me what I just heard….

    NOW, I don’t listen to the president and wait for the pundits to tell me what he said….I just can’t listen to his smug self righteous ramblings.

    Comment by Jay — February 7, 2011 @ 2:02 pm - February 7, 2011

  4. GatewayPundit highlights:

    “Corporate Profits “Have To Be Shared By American Workers”

    Comment by ThatGayConservative — February 7, 2011 @ 2:55 pm - February 7, 2011

  5. I think your being unduly critical at this point (yes I know your fiercely political etc etc) I mean you criticizes the guy when he says things you don’t want to hear and than you criticize him when he says what you do want to hear because it was said in the wrong “tone”. Forgive me for pointing out the obvious but you just plain don’t like the guy so you read into all his speeches what you feel.
    I mean he’s already talked about redoing the tax code which would address the unhealthy incentives to move jobs over seas, he wants to lower the corporate tax rate, and he wants to increase manufacturing and exporting. At some point shouldn’t you reward the politician who is saying the things you want and offering to work with you instead of barricading yourself in a closet and vowing never to come out? Let’s get sh*t done instead manning the ramparts throwing dead cows at each other.

    Comment by Tim — February 7, 2011 @ 3:17 pm - February 7, 2011

  6. Had it on for a few minutes while I was puttering around the apartment. Found the delivery so dull and his manner so self-righteous…

    My thoughts exactly.

    When he finished I laughed and said, “Well, that was certainly inspiring!”

    I’ve seen more enthusiasm from David Duke at a NAACP meeting.

    Comment by The Ugly American — February 7, 2011 @ 3:41 pm - February 7, 2011

  7. It’s not just that Obama talks down to successful business people, he acts like he knows it all. Like the briefings o. Egypt, the pics show Obama TALKING instead of listening to the experts giving him advice.
    For two years the man ripped into every business except windmills. Duhh we decided not to hire any workers, how’s that feel Mr know it all, hehe.

    Comment by Gene in Pennsylvania — February 7, 2011 @ 3:56 pm - February 7, 2011

  8. Why does this president and the Left-wing of the Democratic Party assume that anyone who is successful in business is a Robber Baron? The case they make is a false analogy; the evidence to that is everywhere. Americans know the majority of wealthy people are not thieves. Not even close. Most successful businessmen are just people who work really hard, have a winning idea and know how to implement it. They deserve the fruits of their labor and luck….. However, thanks to the president, many of the regulations his administration has instituted over the last 2 years, have stymied most job growth in the private sector…. So Hell yeah, it’s now up to Mr Obama to initiate policies that will help to encourage corporations to hire again…….. But don’t count on it. His speech today was just more smoke and mirror. Remember it was less than a year ago that POTUS was continually ripping the Chamber of Commerce a new one. Mr Obama is only engaging Big Business now in order to garner support from them in 2012………… Hey, how’s that hope and change going for you?????

    Comment by Spartann — February 7, 2011 @ 4:00 pm - February 7, 2011

  9. The Chamber of Commerce supports outsourcing jobs to other countries. I thought you were against that???

    Comment by Tim — February 7, 2011 @ 4:17 pm - February 7, 2011

  10. Tim, as I recall, you support Amnesty for illegals. Why is outsourcing to foreign countries so much worse than undercutting American jobs by insourcing cheap illegal labor? (Which the Chamber of Commerce also supports.)

    Comment by V the K — February 7, 2011 @ 5:04 pm - February 7, 2011

  11. to Tim….

    Not for nothing, but when regulation and taxation are strangling corporations here at home, if they don’t relocate oversea or close up shop… what else would you expect a savvy businessman to do in order to stay afloat???

    Comment by Spartann — February 7, 2011 @ 5:04 pm - February 7, 2011

  12. For the record, I am opposed to both illegal immigration, and driving jobs to foreign countries through excessive regulation, taxation, litigation and pandering to labor unions.

    Comment by V the K — February 7, 2011 @ 5:09 pm - February 7, 2011

  13. Obama was talking about Communism in his speech; I expect it to backfire. You cannot market Communism & expect people to accept it, although Obama believes he can. Arrogant toad.

    Comment by Sebastian Shaw — February 7, 2011 @ 5:10 pm - February 7, 2011

  14. Also, in another phony meaningless gesture, he says he wants to “review” onerous regulations that impede business. Two points on that:

    1. “Review” is not the same as “Repeal.”
    2. All the massive, job-killing regulations imposed by *his* regime are exempt from said review.

    Comment by V the K — February 7, 2011 @ 5:18 pm - February 7, 2011

  15. Tim:

    Here is the inescapable conundrum of “outsourced” jobs. We participate in free trade in a global economy and tariffs are largely a thing of the past. We have minimum wage, workmen’s comp., liability insurance, employer paid social security, environment rules and regs galore, government paperwork responsibilities, business taxes, property and inventory taxes and much more to pay before we even begin to think of business profit. Expanding the workforce within a business is a very costly risk in expenses against the needed productivity and sales needed to make the hire pay for itself of create greater profit. Business must always look at costs in the same way we budget our own households. When it is cheaper to produce overseas even after paying enormous transportation costs, the business must weigh its options. Insurance funds, retirement funds, endowment funds, charitable trusts, etc. all invest in stocks to grow their funds. They invest in stocks which produce dividends, grow in value and are reliable. Business has to pay its stock holders in order to stay in business, let alone grow.

    If we grew coffee in this country, it would cost $25 a pound or more. Great, beautiful, bountiful flowers and fruits sell in the US for far less than they did only a few years ago. They are flown in here from Central America, South America and farther. We can not compete with the quality and quantity because of labor and production costs. In California, a tiny fish gets the water, but farmers get the finger.

    Please try to think this through. Obama hasn’t. He just wants business to manufacture money for its employees much like the government does.

    Perhaps, Tim, you are an old time hard rock conservative who wants high protective tariffs and and internal economy where people pay high prices for everything because we will not allow for competition from outside the borders. If so, why do you people want so much competition for American citizen labor in times of high unemployment? Does that make sense?

    Comment by Heliotrope — February 7, 2011 @ 5:25 pm - February 7, 2011

  16. @V the K First of all by expanding our labor market and providing amnesty for people working or going to school here, we swell our pool of potential genius pool, keep downward pressure on wages, and keep a steady stream of job seekers willing to work menial manufacturing jobs that increase our exports which keep us in the black. Or you could pretend that we can sell enough planes that we never need to worry about basic manufacturering?
    Or you could pretend that we can build a wall around the country and than complain that there aren’t enough jobs in the country because everyone moved them overseas because of cheaper labor and a larger pool of job seekers with college educations.

    Comment by Tim — February 7, 2011 @ 5:34 pm - February 7, 2011

  17. @Heliotrope I believe your argument should be addressed to @V the K, he’s the one arguing for a protected market. I think such things are foolish as Japan’s economy has demonstrated.

    Comment by Tim — February 7, 2011 @ 5:36 pm - February 7, 2011

  18. Has there ever been a President so totally clueless about business, capitalism, and the marketplace? This idiot really thinks that businesses exist to serve some “greater good”. Like paying taxes for him to piss away. Is he really this stupid or is he playing to his wacko left wing base?

    Comment by Roger Sherman — February 7, 2011 @ 5:38 pm - February 7, 2011

  19. V the K, he’s the one arguing for a protected market.

    Your strawman is cute, but he does not look like me.

    Comment by V the K — February 7, 2011 @ 5:48 pm - February 7, 2011

  20. I never watch anything the US Chamber of Commerce is involved in.
    A few years back they lobbied in my state to reduce business tax (and raise homeowner property taxes to replace the revenue) and won. Small wonder local chapters and a number of large corps have quit
    the organization.

    Comment by BB-Idaho — February 7, 2011 @ 5:50 pm - February 7, 2011

  21. But, Tim in #5, he didn’t say what I wanted to hear. I wanted to hear him say he’ll repeal Obamacare and reduce regulations across the board, including & especially those his administration put into place in the past 2 years.

    Comment by B. Daniel Blatt — February 7, 2011 @ 6:10 pm - February 7, 2011

  22. @B. Daniel Blatt reducing regulations caused enron and the last financial collapse how is repeating the mistake of this recession, and the great depression going to put us on secure footing? Medical spending accounts for a 4th of our economy, (I think it’s at 4 trillion dollars?) Regulation doesn’t have to be an enemy of the people or the economy. I do not want to grow our economy by raping the country or the populace. OESHA gave us the workplace safety that was at the heart of the union movement, trying to cut corners on safety regulations gave us the Big Bend mine explosion. Yes there is needless regulation, but a lot of times removing it without putting common sense policies and yes REGULATIONS into effect simply endangers lives. Do we really want pollution like china’s? we just barely cleaned up our own from our industrialization. Our rivers used to be orange and everything in them was dead, our houses built on chemical waste spills, our paint filled with lead. Regulation isn’t a bad word. Most of Obamacare was the government trying to reduce it’s long term debt exposure while spreading the cost of the health care that the people demand. You want to get rid of Medicare? fight the AARP. I’m sorry that the president doesn’t say what you want every time he speaks but it’s a big country and there’s more than just you in it. You talk about responsible government but your solution seems to be raping the people of any protection so that business’s can do what they want because after all they’re always responsible members of society. Please remember history, remember why we set up the regulations in the first place. Remember that we’ve had these battles before, in fact for the past hundred years and we need to stop fighting yesterday days battles and realize that no single solution is going to fix all our problems

    Comment by Tim — February 7, 2011 @ 7:49 pm - February 7, 2011

  23. @ V the K really where is the work force that is going to rebuild the country going to come from? are you going to recommend that your kids become construction workers and do manual labor for the rest of their lives or are you going to encourage them into fields that pay more and demand less of their bodies? My friends do manual labor and I know what it takes out of them. They’re aging faster than me and we are all the same age. This is at the heart of industrialization, over time a population expects more of their job, more of their life, increasing immigration mitigates that. Giving citizenship to PhD graduates and people that serve in the military is smart, denying qualified citizen candidates a chance to join our country and (gasp pay taxes) benefits us all. We have to be innovative, and we can’t do that by sending all our foreign graduates home.

    Comment by Tim — February 7, 2011 @ 8:08 pm - February 7, 2011

  24. but your solution seems to be raping the people of any protection so that business’s can do what they want because after all they’re always responsible members of society.

    Well I had a response for you, but I see all you’re interested in is popping off with the same old, worn out, whiney, pussy liberal BS.

    Comment by ThatGayConservative — February 7, 2011 @ 8:11 pm - February 7, 2011

  25. You said:

    At some point shouldn’t you reward the politician who is saying the things you want

    Dan pointed out that he hasn’t.

    Your reply is, paraphrased, “Tough shit! You’re just one person!”.


    I will point out that he did say, repeatedly, that he would go through the budget “line by line” and eliminate wasteful spending. Hasn’t done it yet and doesn’t look like he’s going to.

    Comment by ThatGayConservative — February 7, 2011 @ 8:15 pm - February 7, 2011

  26. where is the work force that is going to rebuild the country going to come from?

    Maybe from the 15 million or so Americans that are currently unemployed.

    It’s also, IMHO, kind of racist to say that Americans are too good for manual labor and skilled trades, and those jobs should be left to brown people. I don’t think there’s any dishonor to working with one’s hands.

    My view if we ought to stop punishing our businesses with a highest-in-the-industrialized-world corporate tax rate, crippling regulations, and a business-hostile litigation environment. We should impose mandatory e-verify and make illegal immigrants and their families ineligible for public assistance.

    Giving citizenship to PhD graduates and people that serve in the military is smart

    Giving it out to gangbangers and deadbeats who promise to enroll in community college (as was proposed under the latest DREAM Act) is not.

    Comment by V the K — February 7, 2011 @ 8:20 pm - February 7, 2011

  27. Oh, where in hell do I start:

    The causes of the Enron crimes, the Madoff crimes or the FannieMae/FreddieMac/Barney Frank crimes… were NOT reduced regulation. It was SPECIFICALLY people (especially Congress) FAILING TO ENFORCE the very very many laws and regulations we had/have in place.
    The Big Bend Mine explosion: FAILURE TO ENFORCE the regulations in place.
    Obamacare and the ‘long term debt exposure’? Now, you’re just shooting rainbows and starshine out of your ass. Obamacare with its magical, disappearing $600Billion in Medicare cuts (they don’t actually debit the Medicare side of the books with cuts, they just cast a spell on the credit column of the universal health insurance books…and VOILA!… SAVINGS!)
    Furthermore, I don’t want them paying for /or PLAYING with… debt, other programs, shell games, etc. with our MEDICAL SYSTEM. What the hell?
    I don’t want the pollution China has. I also don’t want lefty, dirt-worshipping, anti-capitalist squirrel-fuckers demanding WE sign onto draconian eco-measures, crippling our economy further, while the largest and most continuous polluters, China, India and Russia get a pat-on-the-back and a thumbs-up from them to NOT sign on.
    As an aside, these same snailophiles refuse (via numerous, unending lawsuits) to allow our refineries that are 38-49 years old…to be phased out and newer, smaller, more efficient (and with 47% less pollutant output) to be built IN THEIR EXACT SAME SPOTS..!
    And yes, believe it or not, those of us on the ‘right’ enjoy clean air and water too. We have made wondrous strides!…but by God, SOME people have decided it’s just not enough, damn anyone else, THEY know best (even when the science doesn’t back them up, or the poorest of the poor they purportedly champion, see staple food items quadruple in price from their handiwork). *see: Ethanol*
    And just STFU with the hyperbole: no one is supporting doing away with Medicare. Why is it all or nothing with the Lefties? Even when talking of someone else’s position, that they don’t bother to research or clarify…they have to report the abandonment (of old people), the starvation (of homeless millions of children), the hangings (of gays and blacks), the turning of millions of elderly out in the cold (SS and Mcare)…
    You discredit every word that comes out of your mouth with such bullshit.
    Whew! *looks around*…. I’m done.
    Good night.

    Comment by rodney — February 7, 2011 @ 8:21 pm - February 7, 2011

  28. I always wonder why libs piss and moan about there not being enough money spent on education, but they’re more than willing to jam in a few million more kids into the system.

    Comment by ThatGayConservative — February 7, 2011 @ 10:56 pm - February 7, 2011

  29. Rodney, a good example of what you describe occurred during the Gulf Oil spill clean up last year when the EPA refused to allow skimming boats to suck oil out of the gulf because some of the water they returned to the ocean might have had trace amounts of oil in it. And then you had the spectacle of government regulators forcing oil skimming boats back to ports so bureaucrats could count life-jackets.

    If this is the kind of idiocy displayed by government regulators in a time of national emergency, imagine the day-to-day crap businesses have to put up with in the USA. Is it any wonder they would rather locate overseas.

    And what has Obama done to improve the business climate in the USA? Nothing. Zip. Zero. Nada. Instead, he and his Democrat allies have expanded the bureaucracy and given it vast new powers to stop businesses from doing business.

    Comment by V the K — February 7, 2011 @ 11:13 pm - February 7, 2011

  30. No, Tim, I said reducing regulations, not eliminating them altogether.

    Comment by B. Daniel Blatt — February 8, 2011 @ 12:39 am - February 8, 2011

  31. Malkin gets it. Obama looooooooooves being in bed with Big Business. He loves their contributions and how ruling over them makes him feel big and important. They, in turn, love the bailouts and all the new regulatory burdens that only the biggest businesses can meet (thus effectively shuttting down competition).

    Some call it corporatism, crony capitalism or corporate socialism. I call it fascism. Whatever it is: it ain’t free enterprise.

    Comment by ILoveCapitalism — February 8, 2011 @ 12:51 am - February 8, 2011

  32. I don’t understand how any businessman would ever give this man the time of day

    1. Like it or not, he is going to have a huge impact on their lives and livelihood. And
    2. Its an opportunity to let the American people know how small businesses feel about Obama’s policies. And it was clear they were not pleased with what he had to say. That gets a message out.

    Comment by American Elephant — February 8, 2011 @ 1:37 am - February 8, 2011

  33. @15, Heliotrope.

    We do grow coffee in this country…in Hawai’i. And, realistically, pure Kona coffee does cost at least $25/lb. retail and usually more. Coffee from the other islands is priced somewhat less. The high price is a function of extremely small plots of land for coffee production, micro-growers, and the cost of shipping from the Islands. Climate also prevents coffee from being grown in the other 49 states (though a middling quality tea is grown in South Carolina).

    In Southern California we used to grow flowers in Encinitas and Leucadia and avocados in Fallbrook, all located near San Diego. Yes, the economies of scale changed to Central and South America as well as Asia. But, and a crucial “but”, owners of land in those areas were unable to ignore large sums of money from housing developers (and, after the houses were constructed, the lawsuits from house owners who wanted the noise, chemical use, trucking, and undesirable farm workers to go away. Hence what used to be fields and orchards and hothouses is now tract housing. Similarly Oxnard to the north of L.A. has one of the richer soils in the world. Same story of housing and concrete industrial tilt-ups. A tragedy for agriculture.

    I agree even small businesses can have significant costs of doing business. But I prefer to differentiate among businesses, some of which have onerous regulations, and others which do not. I often sense a bias among commentors here towards large corporations, perhaps because more work for them than have their own companies. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has never espoused anything I would like for my businesses simply because they are biased towards large corporations. The SBA does far more for small business through the banking system as well as micro-lenders and non-profit entrepreneurial centers joined with the Business Development Agencies.

    I’m sure you understand that the subject of water in California is highly contentious, whether by farmers, urban dwellers, or environmentalists. The Delta smelt, the dams and run-off water, and the Central Valley Project are a complex mix of issues for all Californians, and they deserve much more awareness than a silly talking point from Sarah Palin. When she proves herself knowledgeable about water in California, then I’ll listen to her. Otherwise, let her stick to Alaska and Idaho.

    Comment by Bryan — February 8, 2011 @ 3:04 am - February 8, 2011

  34. Not to quibble, but I think coffee is grown in a few states. I remember an article in the WSJ about a guy who was going to try growing a special breed here in FL, but I haven’t seen or heard anything about it since.

    Used to be that wine was only produced in a select few states. Now it’s being made in all 50. No word on those other seven states Chairman Obama created.

    Comment by ThatGayConservative — February 8, 2011 @ 5:50 am - February 8, 2011

  35. I recall a few years ago, an entrepreneur wanted to set up an aquaculture operation in California to raise farm fish. The state wouldn’t issue him a permit because the water he was returning to the environment… even though it was cleaner than the water going into his operation… was still not pure enough for their standards.

    Progressive policies overwhelmingly favor big business over small business. First, in obvious ways like the taxpayer bailouts Obama has handed out to giant banks, car companies, and GE. But also because the cost of complying with regulations is more easy for huge corporations to bear than smaller ones. Also, the existence of heavy regulation is a barrier to entry that keeps new competitors out of the field.

    The relationship between Big Government and Big Business is essentially symbiotic.

    Comment by V the K — February 8, 2011 @ 6:12 am - February 8, 2011

  36. But, and a crucial “but”, owners of land in those areas were unable to ignore large sums of money from housing developers (and, after the houses were constructed, the lawsuits

    Bryan, but don’t you see that that has “Big Government” all over it? No, I suppose you can’t. But, for the rest of us, remember the causes of the housing bubble: the Federal Reserve over-expanding the money supply and forcing artificially low interest rates, the CRA, government regulators basically ordering banks to make sub-prime loans (loans they previously would not have made), and the government basically ordering Freddie and Fannie to securitize those loans (i.e., to create/support a market for them, by buying them).

    BTW, it also has “Democrat” all over it. Naturally, since Democrats are (even more than Republicans) the party of money printing and Big Government. But also, which President signed the aggressive form of the CRA and for that matter, the repeal of Glass-Steagall? And which party do the trial lawyers support consistently?

    I often sense a bias among commentors here towards large corporations

    Huh? Have you ever read any of my comments? Or perhaps you mean the Obama-, Big Government-supporting leftists on this blog, because as V the K said, the Big Government – Big Business relationship is essentially symbiotic, and leads to things like the bailouts of Wall Street and the unions (Government Motors).

    Comment by ILoveCapitalism — February 8, 2011 @ 10:29 am - February 8, 2011

  37. (continued) …, both carried out by Obama to please his donors at Goldman-Sachs and GE.

    Comment by ILoveCapitalism — February 8, 2011 @ 10:30 am - February 8, 2011

  38. I often sense a bias among commentors here towards large corporations

    Actually, he’s just projecting his stereotypes and prejudices like a typical lib.

    Comment by V the K — February 8, 2011 @ 11:56 am - February 8, 2011

  39. I said reducing regulations, not eliminating them altogether

    Correct. *I* am the one who said, eliminating them altogether.

    Comment by ILoveCapitalism — February 8, 2011 @ 12:40 pm - February 8, 2011

  40. (other than criminal law, which should be retained to protect individual rights to life, liberty and property)

    Comment by ILoveCapitalism — February 8, 2011 @ 12:41 pm - February 8, 2011

  41. @ILoveCapitalism I’ll send you some tainted milk from china and you can tell me how well companies regulate themselves.

    Comment by Tim — February 8, 2011 @ 1:56 pm - February 8, 2011

  42. Tim, I can see you’re full of fallacies. Ever heard of Underwriters Laboratories?

    Comment by ILoveCapitalism — February 8, 2011 @ 2:53 pm - February 8, 2011

  43. (E.g., the fallacy that only government can safety-inspect… the fallacy that There Is No Other Way Than Government! Government Or Else! … typical thinking of Big Government supporters / fascists.)

    Comment by ILoveCapitalism — February 8, 2011 @ 2:56 pm - February 8, 2011

  44. I’ll send you some tainted milk from china and you can tell me how well companies regulate themselves.

    I’ll see your tainted milk and give an economic collapse brought about primarily by government mortgage and energy policies.

    Comment by V the K — February 8, 2011 @ 2:59 pm - February 8, 2011

  45. @ #34 and #36 TGC.

    I wish that would-be coffee grower in Florida good luck because only the robusta variety might “possibly” be grown: there are no mountains in that state, so high altitude (and better quality) coffee can’t be grown. Grapes, on the other hand, are rather less finicky about climate, altitude, and soil than Coffea arabica.

    I worked in commercial banking for nearly two decades during the legislative period you speak of, and I would be glad to to discuss each of those methods and regulations. That chat is far and away beyond the scope of this post. Nonetheless, I do not see the cause-and-effect quite as starkly partisan as you may: both sides of the Congress supported these methods and regulations (or lack of regulation since both Barney Frank and Chris Cox failed in their oversight, I feel). One might also note a change from relationship banking to transactional lending by banks during the same historical period by banks simply because they desired to increase products at the expense of prudent lending.

    Yes, I can see that your interpretation of my comment thus redacted points towards Big Government. As I said above, I can’t indulge in Left vs. Right, Obama vs. Bush, or whatever ideology underpins the desire to polarize the discussion. I am familiar only with Southern California’s real estate market, hence the specific locations I cited. One of the major drivers of historical growth in California has always been real estate development for better and for worse. I view that driver as essential to understanding California economics irrespective of what else is going on in the U.S. economy (all the banking, Federal Reserve, and Congressional legislature you mention). Many real estate developers are small-to-medium-sized businesses which, while certainly taking advantage of government programs supporting their development, still have to find commercial underwriting for their projects. My derision is more for the mindset that has changed the California local economy, whether espoused by land owners or by community governments. The loss of agriculture from, say, Orange County, CA has created a lop-sided business climate significantly focused on real estate and service businesses. Having grown up there, I am sad to see it disappear. I suppose one can’t expect such land to remain as useless cattle pasture forever when there’s money to made by building houses so more persons move to California.

    If you and V the K wish not to quote the entirety of my comment, you may. I did use the word “sense” which implies an opinion open to correction, and I added a presumptive corollary that therefore perhaps more posters work for big companies (than they do for small ones, or even have their own companies, if one extends the thought). If you feel my impression is “projecting”, I see it as, during the couple of years of reading this blog, my not reading anyone’s statement that he or she owns a small business, or seeing posts about small business or even the SBA. In my posts I have myself said a couple of times that I own small businesses, and truly understand the challenges. Heliotrope spoke correctly of the regulatory challenges all businesses face, even though a number of her points affect only large businesses. For example, I do not export, I do not overseas outsource, I have no company stock funds to track, I do not have inventory taxes, and I do not have environmental regs to consider. Still this post was about the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, not the ones in individual cities. The national body I find irrelevant to what I do on a daily basis because it, naturally enough, supports big businesses and their concerns. If the Gay Conservative blog flirts with libertarian “small is beautiful” thinking, then why wouldn’t small business be a proper concern? If what I say thus smacks of being a “lib”, whatever.

    Comment by Bryan — February 8, 2011 @ 4:27 pm - February 8, 2011

  46. Bryan,

    That “whooshing” sound is my coffee comment going right over your head. (Fair warning: I have forgotten more about agriculture in the US than you will ever know.)

    I have traveled the world looking at agriculture from an investment point of view. Guatemala has massive acreage under plastic in rich volcanic soil where they grow roses exclusively for the Rose Bowl Parade floats. There is no earthly way we could compete with the product, the labor, or the liberal regulations. Chile produces peppers, berries, grapes, and leaf crops that just can not be grown here except in unusual and highly scientifically manipulated conditions.

    Common flowers bloom and grow in Colombia fields in such profusion and there is no equivalent in the US in terms of size, bounty and ease of processing. We still have greenhouses and suppliers here, but the competition abroad is intense and challenging.

    My point to you is simple. How do you compete with labor that is pennies on the dollar against ours? How do you regulate pollution in costly ways to the producer while others ignore the “costs.” (P.S.-The Kyoto Protocols simply and clearly gave these competitors a total free ride.)

    Don’t read that I oppose environmental stewardship or a “living wage.” But you hacking away at evil businessmen who insist on making a profit totally ignores reality. It is big government that is to blame and you are blind to that fact.

    By the way, our “green revolution” has made rice cultivation nearly unprofitable in Indonesia and increased taro production in Africa has all but destroyed the pin money gardens of tribal women.

    If you want to get into this, you had best increase your understanding that, as Steinbeck said in his Sea of Cortez: “The literature of science is filled with answers found when the question propounded had an entirely different direction and end.”

    Comment by Heliotrope — February 8, 2011 @ 9:55 pm - February 8, 2011

  47. Heliotrope,

    I’m sorry, but we seem not to understand each other. You like others on this blog focus on Big Government being the problem and not the solution, just as Ronald Reagan said. Okay. If you would point out where precisely you feel I don’t understand that, then we might agree more than you feel we do. I certainly understood your coffee comment, and perhaps you felt you were being lectured to on the Hawaiian coffee industry, though that was not my intent at all.

    “Hacking away at evil businessmen” is hyperbole. A resigned lament by a native Californian watching beautiful foothills turned into tract housing is hardly an indictment of business or the profit motive. I don’t know anyone who is a native who doesn’t say the same things. Saying so doesn’t change the reality either of the real estate development or of the loss of the land and its former economy though.

    Perhaps you are familiar with some of the unfortunate World Bank and IMF projects in lesser developed countries, hence your mention of rice in Indonesia and taro in Africa. There are many examples of misguided, top-down, and foreign attempts to solve hunger, soil erosion, and potable water issues. Results are often more felicitous when local persons resolve their problems in ways suitable for their own lands.

    Competitive advantage is the basic concept you speak of when you mention flowers in Guatemala and Colombia, and crops in Chile. Just as the shoe industry in New England flourished and died, so have certain sectors of agriculture and horticulture in California. Labor costs are a factor as are shifting consumer tastes, supply and demand, and a better advantage in production. The poinsettia-growing Ecke family in Encinitas CA is a prime example of your comment. They had a monopoly through grafting, but, when the method was revealed, other competitors rushed to copy. Today their production is in Guatemala rather than San Diego County. Profits are smaller even though the Eckes still have a majority both of the U.S. and the world market for poinsettias. Of course, since the plant is indigenous to Central America rather than Southern California, it’s not a little ironic to see production return to those countries. The loss of jobs to the local San Diego economy is without doubt. Yet monopolies eventually come to an end.

    I would answer your two questions simply. A country, industry, business, or person focuses on strengths. If labor is costly, one shifts to where it is not, considers mechanization, and/or finds creative and untried solutions. If pollution is a concern for one nation and not for another, the “concerned nation” tries to persuade the “polluter nation” to reach an awareness of the consequences of industrial waste through industry-to-industry contacts, selling pollution equipment, governmental agreements, and/or local environmental groups. The Surfrider Foundation globally and Surfers Against Sewage in the U.K. are examples where local groups work to find fixes for ocean pollution in concert with businesses and governments.

    Comment by Bryan — February 9, 2011 @ 4:21 am - February 9, 2011

  48. On NPR this morning, the state propagandists were claiming that Obama is more pro-business than Calvin Coolidge. There really is no shame.

    Comment by V the K — February 9, 2011 @ 7:45 am - February 9, 2011

  49. Oh, look, the “pro-business” president has just created a federal program to connect disgruntled workers with lawyers willing to sue on their behalf.

    Yeah, that’s going to help small business.

    Comment by V the K — February 9, 2011 @ 10:54 am - February 9, 2011

  50. But Obama *is* pro-business… just like Hitler, Mussolini and the Roman emperors were pro-business. He’s pro-the businesses that support his rule, abandoning their own independence and constitutional rights.

    Comment by ILoveCapitalism — February 9, 2011 @ 11:27 am - February 9, 2011

  51. Bryan,

    What has happened to civilization world wide in the past 100 years is too complicated to begin to comprehend. International pacts and treaties have been cobbled together for momentary advantage but are little more than hurricane shelters made from old clarinet reeds and Scotch Tape. Currently, China is globally gobbling up minerals, raw materials and energy sources with no regard to the ultimate “cost” to the people and lands they are consuming in the process. When they have sucked the area dry, they will walk away and leave the place in shambles.


    There is a tide in the affairs of men.
    Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune;
    Omitted, all the voyage of their life
    Is bound in shallows and in miseries.
    On such a full sea are we now afloat,
    And we must take the current when it serves,
    Or lose our ventures.

    The United States shed its manufacturing kingdom for a service economy in which we have engaged in selling “processes” and go to work serving and being served.

    Either we get back to fundamental production for supplying our own needs or we cast ourselves further adrift in the chaos of global misadventure.

    I prefer that our engagement with the UN be strictly at arms length and only so long as it benefits us. Any altruism about global brotherhood should have been tempered by the facts of China, Soros, al Qaeda, radical Islam, the poor flooding across our borders, and the idea that we can replace fossil fuel by paying determined people to make wind and sun do the job.

    Man made global warming is a hoax. How do I know? Because if the scientists could make the case, they would have done so. Instead, they continue to politic the issue and cram discredited studies and political consensus down our throats. Furthermore, it is a total distraction to what our core crisis problems are.

    Joblessness, sputtering economy, a collapsed housing market and major decline in home values and the consequent crash of property tax revenue, terrorism, a devastating drug culture, crushing unfunded entitlements, etc. are not going to be fixed by electric cars, green house gas manipulation, high speed trains, social justice schemes, more entitlements, hope and change or seizing the future.

    Sorry about development ruining the views. I was under the impression that the Golden State and the liberal geniuses in charge were the ultimate guardians of the Garden of Eden. There must be a way to blame it on conservatives.

    Progressives can paddle around in this septic tank full of chattering class babble. Real people know that recycled baloney and hot air won’t fix a thing. If you are one of the welfare dependents, God help you. You are a sinking ship with no freight to throw overboard. What are you going to do, finally start taking care of needs?

    Comment by Heliotrope — February 9, 2011 @ 1:45 pm - February 9, 2011

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.