Kathryn Lopez

The Obama-Biden campaign not only wants to make it harder for the Joes of the nation to be small-business owners, but Barack & Co. want to denigrate them for even aiming in that direction. There's something about that line -- along with that downright Marxist "spread the wealth" talk -- that would, on Election Day, deliver a decisive slap to this country's founding ideals.

Bobbi, wife of "Mark the Trucker," e-mailed me the morning after the debate. Her husband owns a small transportation business that he founded with one truck in 1978. She said that small businesses cannot usually deduct as a business expense money that is taxed as personal income. That puts most small business in a higher tax bracket than the one they would qualify for if only their real earnings were taxed. This higher tax bracket, indicating a wealth that exists on paper alone, has prevented their children from getting financial aid for college.

She continued: "Engines blow up, accidents happen, and the price of replacing an 18-wheel tractor or a specialty trailer is very expensive. My husband is taxed a higher rate on income that is really not income. He puts a large percentage of it back into his business, as I know most entrepreneurs do. We live on a modest percentage of what appears as 'wealth' to Senator Obama."

And the men who work for Mark get that and respect that, she believes. "They see how we live and they respect their boss because he pays a fair wage and does provide health care and contribute to their 401(k)s," she writes.

And so Joe's words spoke to Bobbi. "Joe is like my husband and his employees. They work hard and dream bigger. There are a lot of Joes and Marks out here, and they all don't own businesses yet, but they dream. They know less government is best government. And, Kathryn, they all vote Republican."

Mark, Joe, Bobbi and many McCain supporters look at the Democratic Party's tendency toward class warfare and want to make a flight toward freedom. I don't know if the Joe the Plumbers of America are going to win the election for McCain-Palin, but they have certainly installed the pipes that are bringing a refreshing flow of honest revelation in these last weeks before E-Day.

Kathryn Lopez

Kathryn Jean Lopez, editor of National Review Online, writes a weekly column of conservative political and social commentary for Newspaper Enterprise Association.