Marvin Olasky


President Barack Obama's rhetoric shows that politically liberal Christians differ from politically conservative ones not only in policy proposals, but in the understanding of human nature that leads to those proposals.

Let's think the best of our president. Let's suggest that his frequent vilification of corporate presidents flying around on private jets—he attacked them six times in a June 29 press conference—is more than a political appeal to class envy.

Let's say he thinks private jet tax breaks are unfair because he is philosophically committed to equality. Since President Obama has emphasized that "creating jobs" is Job No. 1 for him, let's think the best of him and assume he believes that taking away special treatment for corporate presidents will help the unemployed get back to work.

If those assumptions are correct, we should treat the White House occupant not with paranoia but with pity. He's showing a lack of both business experience and biblical understanding. He and other liberals are showing that they don't understand original sin.

People without business experience might think entrepreneurship is easy. President Obama should at least scan "I, Pencil: My Family Tree," an essay written by Leonard Read in 1958. Read explains what it takes to make even a simple writing tool: Its components include cedar, lacquer, graphite, ferrule, pumice, wax, and glue—and huge numbers of people must be at work before the final product emerges.

The reality of social entropy is that enterprise doesn't just happen; without consistent effort, things fall apart. Time is money: If "creating jobs" is really Job No. 1 for President Obama, he should want business leaders to have as much time as possible to make more money, because they'll do that by expanding production, and that normally means employing more people.

Job-creating business leaders are public servants, and if a corporate jet saves them time, not only the company but the United States will benefit. I should also point out that thoughtful Christians in business work long hours primarily because they know God wants them to use the talents He gave them to create an environment in which employees can use their talents.

You may think this talk of public-servant executives and altruistic Christians is all kerfuffle. You may think corporate jets are just perks for fat cats. If you are thinking that, and if you're right, I have two words for you: So what?

Marvin Olasky

Marvin Olasky is editor-in-chief of the national news magazine World. For additional commentary by Marvin Olasky, visit
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