The American public is about to once again witness the liberals’ total disdain for, and ignorance of, the dynamics of capitalism and our free market economic system. Liberals in the House have already passed legislation to increase the federal minimum wage three times over the next two years. They have clearly voiced their economy-killing positions on issues ranging from tax rate increases to dictating what companies should pay their employees.
Since Franklin Roosevelt’s socialist New Deal policies, to Lyndon Johnson’s budget-busting Great Society, through Carter’s stagflation and Clinton’s largest tax increase in history, liberal Democrats never fail to cook up schemes that deny individuals their economic freedom and shackle our economy. That’s what they do.
The liberals’ so-called new direction is in fact the same direction they always go when entrusted with the reins of power – backwards. The first sight in their targets is, as always, successful businesses and the specter of a nonexistent national income disparity.
The new Democratic chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA), wants the federal government to work on reducing income inequality. He will no doubt conduct numerous hearings and eventually initiate legislation that starts us down a slippery slope toward capping executive salaries and compensation. Liberals want us out of their bedrooms, but cannot wait to get into corporate boardrooms.
The only obstacles facing liberals are the facts. CNSNews.com reported on January 5 that Frank plans to focus his hearings on: “Why the top income earners are making so much more than lower earners and what the government can do about it.” Yet a Census Bureau study commissioned by the Congress’s own Joint Economic Committee found that from 2001 to 2005 there was “virtually no statistical change in income inequality.”
Rep. Frank appeared January 4 on “Your World with Neil Cavuto” to make his case for increased government oversight of corporate compensation. He argued, “I think we should let the owners of the companies decide what the CEO pay should be, and that’s the shareholders.” Earth to Congressman Frank, they already do! Corporate directors are elected by the shareholders and represent the shareholders. And in every corporate structure I am aware of there are corporate governance rules for nominating directors and changing directors if the shareholders are not happy with their decisions.
Congressman Frank added, “What we need to do is step in and amend the law because in some states where corporate law is set, shareholders who want to have a vote can’t get one. What I propose is that we should pass a law giving the shareholders a right to vote on these issues.” Most corporations are not structured that way, and if you can find some that are then shareholders can take their money somewhere else. Again, the facts and common sense are not on his side.
New statistics from the December 2006 jobs report provide additional facts that will surely annoy liberals. U.S. employers added 167,000 jobs last month, and the jobs figures for October and November 2006 were revised upward by 29,000 jobs. Additionally, the unemployment rate stood at 4.5 percent. Richard Moody, an analyst for real estate firm Mission Residential, stated in a January 5 Wall Street Journal story: “Perhaps the most noteworthy number in the December employment report is the 0.5% increase in average hourly earnings…December's increase in average hourly earnings reflects an over-the-year increase of 4.2 percent and, with the recent moderation in energy prices, workers’ wages are now running above inflation.” Now where is that economy that only benefits the rich?
Liberal whining over phantom inequality and a discriminatory economy will only increase when President Bush sends Congress his budget on February 5. Anything short of a 100 percent tax rate proposal on individuals and businesses will elicit liberal cries of budget cuts for children, veterans, the elderly, birds, bees and funding to teach children the birds and bees in government schools.
The Democratic leaders are expectedly claiming their victory is a mandate for any government-enforced tax, regulatory and spending idea they can concoct. Their true goal is to claim just enough populist and class warfare-driven victories to help ensure that they maintain control of Congress, and enhance the chances of electing a Democratic president in 2008.
Liberals are not only ignoring the facts, they are ignoring the threatened future of this country, and individual initiative and responsibility in order to achieve their not-so-new objective of an even bigger, inefficient and intrusive federal government.
Wake up America! The United States of America. Danger lies ahead!
Herman Cain is the National Chairman of the Media Research Center’s Business & Media Institute. He is the former president and CEO of Godfather’s Pizza, Inc., and currently is CEO and president of T.H.E. New Voice, Inc., a business and leadership consulting company.
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