Blog on the Run: Reloaded

Wednesday, October 19, 2011 10:14 pm

Why anti-government conservatives should be parachuted into more business-friendly environments

Apparently, Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren has said some things that have hurt the fee-fees of our Galtian overlords. Fred sent me the following, which he says he saw on some board dedicated to Stanford football. (Uh, OK, whatever.) The writer purports to be responding to this video of Elizabeth Warren as he wahrgarblz:

“You built a factory out there? Good for you,” – “Built a factory” is a summary for a lot of work. Put up equity, designed a business, took risk to buy land, get permits, pay property taxes and use taxes and permit fees. Then, bought a bunch of equipment and had it installed …and paid sales taxes. Hired some employees and paid them a bunch of money and paid payroll taxes on top of that. Bought a bunch of raw materials from companies that paid a bunch of salaries and a bunch of taxes. Building a factory is a huge private investment that pays the public a lot of taxes for the right to be built.

“But I want to be clear: you moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for.” – Between fuel taxes, license fees, tolls and various taxes on transportation related activities, the roads budget is smaller than the total tax take.

“You hired workers the rest of us paid to educate.” No, you did not educate them. You babysat them for 12 years. Then I hired them, taught them how to be responsible and show up for work, taught them how to communicate in clear sentences, taught them that there are rights and wrongs and (unlike with your schools) wrongs have consequences in the workplace. Then paid for extended education for my employees so they could continue to improve themselves and better add value to what we do around here.

“You were safe in your factory because of police forces and fire forces that the rest of us paid for.” Funny, my factory has 24/7 security guards because the last time it was broken into, the police did not even bother to take a report, they just said “call your insurance company”. As for fire? The closest fire department is 10 miles away. My insurance company requires that I have a full wet sprinkler system to qualify for insurance because there is no local fire protection.

“You didn’t have to worry that marauding bands would come and seize everything at your factory, and hire someone to protect against this, because of the work the rest of us did.” Well, that is not exactly true. When the AFL-CIO tried to unionize my workforce, they staged three days of noisy protests outside my factory. The police forces just stood around and watched as the protesters intimidated my workers, vandalized their cars and destroyed my property.

You say “we” like the government and society are the same. They aren’t. My company and my community and you politicians are not “we”.

One could use many adjectives to describe this outlook. “Rational” is not one of them. “Contextual” is not one of them. “American” is not one of them. Given the likelihood, in this day and age of video cameras in every phone, that AFL-CIO protesters destroyed your property in plain view while uniformed police officers stood by and watched, I’m pretty sure “factual” isn’t even one of them.

Indeed, one could I’M SORRY I CAN’T HEAR YOU MY BULLSHIT DETECTOR IS GOING OFF TOO LOUDLY.

Wait. You know what? I’m over being civil to idiots.

Memo to this shit-for-brains Galtian overlord:

You’re so talented? You’re so smart? You’re so independent of everything your fellow Americans have worked and sweated for that you’ll be just fine without it?

OK. Let’s test that hypothesis.

This’ll be the best “Dude, What Would Happen?” episode ever. (My 10-year-old loves that show. Sorry.)

Here’s what we’re going to do.

We’re going to parachute your ass into the wilds of north-central Alaska or a free-fire zone in Uganda or a raft off the coast of Somalia. Just to be fair, we’ll parachute your money in, too, all in gold, of course, since U.S. currency would be too declassé.

We’ll let you keep all the education and experience you’ve ever gotten. And all the friends and contacts you’ve ever made.

We’ll let you keep the lowest corporate tax rate in 60 years. Hell, we’ll set the tax rate to zero. And we’ll let your corporation keep its share of the $2 trillion in cash U.S. corporations are sitting on when unemployment is better than 9%. Because, after all, what’s yours is yours, right?

All we ask in return is one thing:

Create some jobs.

That’s all.

Granted, for the entire 10-year period from 2001 through 2010 that was too goddamn much for you to be bothered with. But I’m going to assume that, oh, I don’t know, maybe you just weren’t trying. Maybe it was all that uncertainty about the horrific cost of government regulations or something. Whatever; we’ll give you a mulligan on that. And, as I said, we’ll let you keep all your stuff.

But here’s what we won’t let you keep.

The U.S. military, which keeps you reliably supplied with cheap energy.

The subsidies for whatever it is you do — and, honestly, it doesn’t matter what you do because at the moment, federal, state and local governments are subsidizing everything from ethanol to NFL franchises.

The Internet, which was built by the taxpayers when I was 9, belonged to them until I was in my late 30s and should never have been put in private hands at all.

The roads, including the Interstate Highway System, that are paid for by people whose gasoline tax payments constitute one HELL of a lot bigger share of their income than yours, not to mention, in many cases, bonds that drivers and non-drivers alike pay for. (Fun fact: Pedestrians and private 4-wheel vehicles a disproportionately high share of the costs connected with road maintenance; 18-wheelers, many of which routinely travel over weight limits, pay a disproportionately LOW share of the costs.)

Or the government mechanisms that make the insurance companies whose cost you complain about so much possible in the first place.

Or the water lines that make your pretty sprinklers work.

Or the police departments that might or might not have allowed AFL-CIO thugs to damage your workers’ cars and destroy your property — I think you’re pulling this one out of your ass, although we’ll let that go — but which damn well do keep the very walls of your plant from being carted off and sold for scrap and the women who work for you from being raped and mutilated right there on the assembly line by the Lord’s Resistance Army or whatever the hell terrorist group Rush Limbaugh thinks he can suck up to conservative Christian listeners by fellating on the air this week.

Or the current state of education of the work force. Because if you like this, you’ll love a work force consisting mainly of 9-year-olds pointing AK-47s at your head. (And just so you know, teaching people how to communicate in clear sentences, which, on the basis of 35 years in the business world, I can confidently conclude you have not done because the sheer incidence of such effective education in the business world is vanishingly small, means that you also have to teach them the difference between reality and fantasy. Keep that in mind next time. Moreover, given how much personal offense you have taken at Warren’s remarks, you probably should Google “synecdoche,” although because I’m repaying you in kind, I’ll let it go. That said, the period goes inside the close-quotation marks.)

That’s the deal. It’s what you asked for, so you pretty much have to take it, now, don’t you?

Strap on the chute and get on the plane, big guy. I’ll be happy to be the jumpmaster who puts a boot up your ass as you and your bullion exit over the drop zone.

And then?

Start creating jobs.

Go on.

We’ll wait.

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Friday, September 23, 2011 8:31 pm

Susan Grigsby has a question for the 2012 presidential candidates

Filed under: Evil — Lex @ 8:31 pm
Tags: ,

And a news media that was worth a damn would keep after the candidates until every single one was on record as having answered — and I mean a real answer, not a nonanswer, not an evasion, not a change of subject. Because this is a very basic question about what kind of country we’re going to be, and if you’re going to run the place, I want to know how you feel about it.

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