Mixed Messages from Obama on Stimulus Plan

On one hand, Barack Obama is showing his hand as a politician and pragmatist, dangling out an aggressive tax cut package for business and industry, a not-so-veiled attempt at fostering some dissent within the ranks of the congressional conservative Republicans. Heck, if it weren’t for the other, spendthrift aspects of Obama’s stimulus plan, you might see this conservative tugging at the line a bit (though still wary of the inevitable boat, net, filet knife, and grill).

On the other hand, however, you’ve essentially got a promise to create 600,000 more government jobs. While the creation of 600,000 jobs can be looked at as a good thing, remember that if you look at America as a business, excess government–and indeed that excess includes an increased number of government jobs–is akin to overhead, while growth in the private sector spawns revenue.

Whatever package Obama unveils in his upcoming speech, I hope that the elected folks on Capitol Hill have more than just a week to look it over. If the $750 billion TARP nightmare was the size of a telephone book or more, I cannot imagine what Obama’s “American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan.”

(As an aside, whenever you hear a liberal talking about “investing” in America or, God forbid, “re-investing,” it means that they want to spend, spend, spend without oversight, common sense, or fear of adverse consequence.)

In the meantime, I want to do something I’ve never done before at America’s Right. I want to share one of the numerous e-mails I get from the wonderful readers here. This one, as it were, probably has been forwarded around from place to place, so it may look familiar. Regardless, as we listen to news of Obama’s new scheme to tank America but do it in a sweet-smelling fashion, news inevitably spun by a mainstream press which is about as anti-business as it is anti-Israel, I thought this little forwarded e-mail captured much of what needs to be remembered.

It’s a hypothetical internal memorandum written by a hypothetical boss. Take a look, and feel free to pass it along — I certainly was happy to receive it.

– Jeff

To All of My Valued Employees,

There have been some rumblings around the office about the future of this company and, more specifically, your job. As you know, the economy has changed for the worse and presents many challenges. However, the good news is this:

The economy doesn’t pose a threat to your job. What does threaten your job, however, is the changing political landscape in this country. That being said, let me tell you some little tidbits of fact which might help you decide what is in your best interests.

First, while it is easy to spew rhetoric that casts employers against employees, you have to understand that for every business owner there is a back story. This back story is often neglected and overshadowed by what you see and hear. Sure, you see me park my Mercedes outside. You’ve seen my big home at last year’s Christmas party. I’m sure all these flashy icons of luxury conjure up some idealized thoughts about my life. However, what you don’t see is the back story.

I started this company 28 years ago. At that time, I lived in a 300 square foot studio apartment for 3 years. My entire living apartment was converted into an office so I could put forth 100% effort into building a company — which, by the way, would eventually employ you.

My diet consisted of Ramen Pride noodles because every dollar I spent went back into this company. I drove a rusty Toyota Corolla with a defective transmission. I didn’t have time to date. Often times, I stayed home on weekends, while my friends went out drinking and partying. In fact, I was married to my business, to hard work, discipline, and sacrifice.

Meanwhile, my friends got jobs. They worked 40 hours a week and made a modest $50K a year and spent every dime they earned. They drove flashy cars and lived in expensive homes and wore fancy designer clothes. Instead of hitting the Nordstrom’s for the latest hot fashion item, I was trolling through the discount store extracting any clothing item that didn’t look like it was birthed in the 70′s. My friends refinanced their mortgages and lived a life of luxury. I, however, did not. I put my time, my money, and my life into a business with a vision that eventually, some day, I too will be able to afford these luxuries my friends supposedly had.

So, while you physically arrive at the office at 9am, mentally check in at about noon, and then leave at 5pm, I don’t. There is no “off” button for me. When you leave the office, you are done and you have a weekend all to yourself. I unfortunately do not have that freedom. I eat, sleep and breathe this company every minute of the day. There is no rest. There is no weekend. There is no happy hour. Every day this business is attached to my hip like a 1 year old special-needs child. You, of course, only see the fruits of that garden — the nice house, the Mercedes, the vacations — and never realize the back story and the sacrifices I’ve made.

Now, the economy is falling apart and I, the guy that made all the right decisions and saved his money, have to bail out all the people who didn’t. The people that overspent their paychecks suddenly feel entitled to the same luxuries that I earned and sacrificed a decade of my life for.

Yes, business ownership has is benefits, but the price I’ve paid is steep and not without wounds. Unfortunately, the cost of running this business, and employing you, is starting to eclipse the threshold of marginal benefit and let me tell you why:

I am being taxed to death and the government thinks I don’t pay enough. I have state taxes. Federal taxes. Property taxes. Sales and use taxes. Payroll taxes. Workers compensation taxes. Unemployment taxes. Taxes on taxes. I have to hire a tax man to manage all these taxes and then guess what? I have to pay taxes for employing him. Government mandates and regulations and all the accounting that goes with it, now occupy most of my time. On Oct 15th, I wrote a check to the US Treasury for $288,000 for quarterly taxes. You know what my “stimulus” check was? Zero. Nada. Zilch.

The question I have is this: Who is stimulating the economy? Me, the guy who has provided 14 people good paying jobs and serves over 2,200,000 people per year with a flourishing business, or the single mother sitting at home pregnant with her fourth child by the fourth father waiting for her next welfare check? Obviously, government feels the latter is the economic stimulus of this country.

The fact is, if I deducted (or stole) 50 percent of your paycheck you’d quit and you wouldn’t work here. I mean, why should you? That’s nuts. Who wants to get rewarded for only 50 percent of their hard work?

Well, I agree, and that is why your job is in jeopardy. Here is what many of you don’t understand … to stimulate the economy you need to stimulate what runs the economy. Had suddenly government mandated to me that I didn’t need to pay taxes, guess what? Instead of depositing that $288,000 into the Washington black hole, I would have spent it, hired more employees, and generated substantial economic growth. My employees would have enjoyed the wealth of that tax cut in the form of promotions and better salaries.

When you have a comatose man on the verge of death, you don’t defibrillate and shock his thumb thinking that will bring him back to life, do you? Or, do you defibrillate his heart? Business is at the heart of America and always has been. To restart it, you must stimulate it, not kill it. Suddenly, the power brokers in Washington believe the poor of America are the essential drivers of the American economic engine. Nothing could be further from the truth and this is the type of change you can keep.

So where am I going with all this? It’s quite simple. If any new taxes are levied on me, or my company, my reaction will be swift and simple.

I fire you. I fire your co-workers. You can then plead with the government to pay for your mortgage, your SUV, and your child’s future. Frankly, it isn’t my problem any more. Then, I will close this company down, move to another country, and retire. You see, I’m done. I’m done with a country that penalizes the productive and gives to the unproductive. My motivation to work and to provide jobs will be destroyed, and with it, will be my citizenship.

So, if you lose your job, it won’t be at the hands of the economy; it will be at the hands of a political hurricane that swept through this country, steamrolled the Constitution, and will have changed its landscape forever. If that happens, you can find me sitting on a beach, retired, and with no employees to worry about.

Regards,
Your Boss

Share

Comments

  1. Anonymous says:

    Having been a "Boss" a couple of times in my life…. I can relate to everything that he just stated. The freedom from all those problems is pure bliss.

    I had two heart attacks and while in the hospital…the help helped themselves to my assets and got paid more than when I was there.

    After the second attack…I walked in one morning looked around and just turned around and went home…When they started calling asking "What Happened" I simply stated "I Quit"….Their response? What are we going to do?….My response? "The same thing you've been doing…. I'm just not paying you any more!!!"

    I lost everything,but the relief was worth the loss…. I know I have the ability within myself to build a business and create jobs,but the rewards aren't worth what it takes from your own life….

    I'm with whoever wrote that letter and I hope he enjoys the beach…..The "Boss" isn't the bad guy folks…He's the one that puts it all together and then tries to hold it together so everyone has a job & food on the table.

    The guys in Washington get paid out of your pocket no matter what they do…and retire on your efforts too,with great insurance(on you too)They even give themselves a raise in the middle of all this mess they created and still,they are voted right back into their own piggy bank(yours) with no oversight.

    Waking up! Isn't going to get it this time…We all better hit the deck running…..Running those idiots out of the insane positions they have staked a claim to,that each of us pays for and then gets ignored whenever we have the audacity to complain about the policies they put forth.

    Again, I'm with the guy that wrote that letter….Dave

  2. Anonymous says:

    Jeff — I worked for the feds in DC for over 25 years — they need to fire half of what they already have in the Nation’s capitol. If the public could see some of the lazy and just plain dumb people their tax dollars support, they’d be in total shock and be marching on Washington. They are the employer of choice for those who want to sit on their bottoms and collect great paychecks. The numbers of good and hardworking people for the feds have been dwindling for a couple of decades. They sure don’t need more bottom feeders!

  3. Jeff Schreiber says:

    they need to fire half of what they already have in the Nation’s capitol.

    You are absolutely 100 percent correct. They need to drop the dead weight and trim down before even considering moving forward.

    I work, a lot of the time, in a federal courthouse. Some people there work hard. Many don’t.

  4. Rix says:

    “What this country really needs is more unemployed politicians.” –Edward Langley

  5. gailbullock says:

    Six hundred thousand jobs? I would love to see 600,000 people lined up to secure our borders. Include the return of Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean to duty while we’re at it.

    The agents need to learn how to shoot to kill so that “astard-bays” can’t testify against them. Prosecutor John Sutton should serve those border agents’ sentences (consecutively) for false prosecution!

    Question: How are we going to pay for 600,000 more government jobs– by sucking the money from people who can’t pay for anything themselves in the first place because of the depression?

    When will China foreclose on the U.S. debt?

    Just call me a right wingnut.

  6. SeeksTruth says:

    What do you do? If you work hard, you’re a slave. If you don’t work hard, you’re a dependent (another type of slave).

    As Dave said, our public SERVANTS all get their piece of the pie, no matter what. Anyone get the irony here? They are supposed to be our SERVANTS, yet we are the SLAVES. Go figure.

    I am so disgusted with the lack of character in our leaders. But once again, it comes back upon us. We get the civil government that directly reflects the (collective) individual’s ability to self-govern. Our founders knew this.

    Once we take God out of anything, it falls apart.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Wow! More Americans need to receive a letter like that from their boss. Thank you for sharing. People do not understand that people who own businesses sacrifice greatly to make a better life for themselves and by extension their employees.

  8. Dee says:

    Where does Nancy Pelosi, Harry Ried, and Mr. Obama think the money is going to come from? I guess they will continue to print as much as they want. Maybe Nancy will give up her jet. After all, she asked the auto execs to give up theirs. I can’t imagine 600,000 more government employees. I am going to apply for the job of changing light bulbs in schools and government offices so they are more “green” as Mr. Obama is planning to do.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Dear Mr. Boss: I do understand how hard you work and how much you sacrafice to keep this business going. I was just wondering though, if you realize that those early days of hardship you referred to, are exactly the lives your employees have been enduring under your employ, but with no hope that we will work our way out of it, like you had. Now that you have done away with our health insurance, we just ask that you understand that we now leave here at 5:00 and go to our second job to pay for that loss of benefits. I know you deserve a great house and a mercedes, but could we have a cost of living allowance sometime soon. We haven’t had one since 1999 and we want to move out of our parent’s basement before our children graduate high school.

  10. lewis4645 says:

    This is the first time that I have read this e-mail and as a small business owner for 25 years I could have written this e-mail myself. The past 3-6 months have been tremendously stressful but I don’t have any employees that go home at night,losing sleep over how to make payroll next week. The average employee has no idea of the stress and involvement of self employment, not to mention the finances. I once read that small business employs more people than all the “big corporations”. Yet, we get none of the benefits or credit. America has lost its way and I’m afraid the road back may be long and winding!

  11. lewis4645 says:

    Dear Anonymous,
    What health insurance?? I can’t afford it anymore than I can pay for my employees to have it!

    Linda L.

  12. rls says:

    I sold my business two years ago and I sold specifically because of taxes – filing in excess 32 various returns a year.

    I read somewhere recently that over 37% of all workers drawing a paycheck get that check from taxes. That includes all federal, state, local employees, teachers, college administrators and instructors, indirect tax subsidies such as NGO’s, NPR, etc. If you then factor in the unemployed at about 6% and the hard core unemployable, disabled, welfare and government recipients of aid, you rapidly get to where under 50% of employed are basically subsidizing the remainder.

    What people don’t realize is that government, in all its shapes and forms, is a net consumer of productivity. It produces nothing and every dollar spent on it takes away from the productivity of the private sector.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Dear Mr. Boss,
    Matthew says 16:26 For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?
    After reading this over I have two questions for all those that have sacrificed and given their life to their business. I am a business owner myself. Here are my two questions:
    1. Has anyone ever told you that God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life?
    2. If you were to die this very moment, can you say beyond a shadow of a doubt that you know for sure that you would go to heaven?

    Let me share with you all what the holy bibles says: For we have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. Whomsoever, should call upon the name of the Lord, shall be saved.

    If you a whomsoever, then you qualify. While your pondering that thought, I’m going to say a prayer for you and your family today.

    Lord I just bless whoever reads this with a long and healthy life. Jesus, make yourself real to them, do a quick work in their hearts. If they have not received Jesus Christ as their Lord and savior I pray that they would do so now. If you would like to receive the free gift that God has for you today (eternal life), then say these words with your heart and lips out loud.

    Dear Lord Jesus,
    Come into my heart. Forgive me of my sin. Wash me cleanse me set me free. Jesus, thank you that died for me. I know that you are risen from the dead and I know that you’re coming back again for me. Fill me with your Holy Spirit; give me a passion for the lost and a hunger for the things of God. A holy boldness to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. I am now saved, born again and on my way to heaven because I’ve got Jesus in my heart.

    My friend if you said that prayer today and you believed it in your heart, then God heard you and he forgave all your sins. He says I will remember their sins no more, as far as the east is from the west. Today is a new day and new beginning. Purpose it in your heart to give and honor God with your business and watch what he will do with it.

    God’s messenger and servant
    Mia

  14. Anonymous says:

    For those of us who run companies the author left out the most important point.
    Where did he go?

  15. Anonymous says:

    YES THERE ARE SOME GOOD BOSSES OUT THERE, BUT FOR THOSE THAT HAVE BEEN HIRING ILLEGAL ALIENS TO MAKE MORE THEN THEY DESERVE, IT IS THERE FAULT THAT US EMPLOYEES CANT LIVE ANY MORE BY MAKING OUR WAGES FALL AND NOW OUR BOSSES CANT AFFORD TO PAY FOR OUR INSURANCE BECAUSE THE HIRING OF ILLEGAL ALIENS HAS MADE THIS COUNTRY A MAGNET FOR THEM SO THEY STAY HERE AND GET FREE SERVICES THAT U END UP PAYING FOR ANYWAY WITH ALL THEM TAXES , SO I DO NOT FEEL SORRY FOR THEM PEOPLE WHO MADE THIS PROBLEM WITH HELP FROM OUR GOVERMENT , THESE COMPANIES HAVE ENOUGH MONEY TO LOBBY CONGRESS BUT NOT TO PAY FOR INSURANCE ?????? JUST REMEMBER THE EMPLOYEES HELP MAKE YOU THAT MONEY EVEN THOUGH WE CHECK OUT AT FIVE OUR FIGHT NEVER ENDS FROM THE PROBLEM THAT THESE COMPANIES HAVE MADE NOT EVEN OUR OWN GOVERMENT WILL HELP WE KEEP TELLING THEM THE REASONS WHY THINGS ARE SO BAD , THE OUTSOURING THE ILLEGALS , BUT HAY THE LITTLE PEOPLE ARE DUMB AND KNOW NOTHING !!!! WHAT IS SAD WE HAVE TO FIGHT THE OWN PEOPLE THAT ARE HERE TO SERVE US , PEOPLE NEED TO WAKE UP , WE ARE BECOMING A THRID WORLD COUNTRY , EVERY WHERE I TURN I FEEL LIKE IM IN ANOTHER COUNTRY !!I HAVE BEEN WORKING MY ASS OFF FOR YOU PEOPLE FOR 25 YEARS AND NO I DONT HAVE A MERCEDES OR A BIG HOUSE AND YES I HAVE SACRFICE , HAD DISCIPLINE , AND WILL NOT RETIRE ON A BEACH , MY KIDS WILL NOT GO TO COLLEGE , I WILL STRUGGLE TILL I DIE !!!!! JUST WANT WHAT WE DESERVE !!!

  16. Charles Caro says:

    What are your thoughts on a stimulus plan that would put 4 million people back to work in 2009 and cost less than $100 Billion?

    Consider a plan that provides an incentive tax credit of 50% of the first year salary or $25,000, whichever is lower, to employers hiring stateside workers authorized to work in the US that are currently unemployed, and put a limit of *only* 4 million jobs.

    If you do the math, the total cost comes up at $100 Billion or less, and as a tax credit it does not go out of the US Treasury.

    In the December 22, 2008 issue of Time Magazine Marc Cenedella states:

    “But even in a downturn, there’s still 20% to 25% natural turnover per year. In the six-figure category, he estimates that will mean 3.2 million hires a year instead of 4 million in a normal market.”

    If you do the math on those 3.2 million hires at “just” $100K, the aggregate payroll amounts to $320 Billion, and does not include any hires under $100K or any additional jobs created as a result of the initial injection of payroll dollars.

    All of these jobs will exist even in a recessionary economy, and employers will be hiring for these positions anyway. This means there is virtually no delay in being able to fill these positions. In fact, with the tax credit incentive, which would be limited to 4 million jobs, employers might be encouraged to accelerate their hiring to ensure they get the tax credit incentive.

    The purpose of this tax credit incentive is to get employers to get away from the folly of hiring “passive candidates” in these troubled times because moving a worker from Company A to Company B is like playing musical chairs on the deck of the Titanic.

    PLEASE NOTE: My proposal amounts to a tax cut for businesses willing to hire someone who is currently unemployed rather than hiring a “passive candidate”. In other words, it is NOT another handout from the US Treasury.

    In fact, if the program were expanded to 5, 6, 7, or 8 million jobs for the unemployed, it would be what amounts to a tax cut of under $200 Billion. This is a tax cut that businesses earn by doing something positive for the economy.

    Imagine the positive impact of having 8 million currently unemployed workers back on a payroll.

    The first level impact for 8 million unemployed workers returning to work would be $320 Billion in payroll even when the average salary of $40,000 per year. And, at that average $40,000 annual salary the total tax cut afforded to businesses would amount to $160 Billion. Remember, that is a tax cut and NOT something that is a handout from the US Treasury.

    The multiplier in having that many people put back on the payroll could easily produce a benefit to the US economy very near $1 Trillion.

Speak Your Mind

*