American Elephants


Big Business Priorities Will Be Joe Biden’s Priorities. by The Elephant's Child
January 17, 2021, 7:15 pm
Filed under: Politics | Tags: , , ,

Big Business, having hired lots of illegal aliens as cheaper labor, now wants the new president to make them all citizens. The key word there is “illegal”. There is a formal system for entering our country to live and work, it’s called immigration. There is a procedure. You apply for admission and for citizenship, and wait your turn, study the Constitution, and take a test, and there will be a citizenship ceremony when you swear allegiance and are welcomed as new citizens. You just don’t ask a new president to waive all that for your convenience.

The initial idea seems to be that Google would take care of the internet advertising. Immediately services sprang up to offer to remove all ads for a small fee, and of course, you can just click on the ones you don’t want to make them disappear. There is a distinct limit to all the tee-shirts with cute sayings or kitties that people will buy. Google ads are remarkably unappealing. The fact that Google ads are not bringing in the needed revenue, means that websites are now deciding that you have to subscribe to read their offerings. I don’t know about you, but I visit about 20 different websites each day, and the likelihood of my buying 20 subscriptions is about nil. In the old days, before computers, people in good circumstances subscribed to their local daily newspaper, listened to the radio, and perhaps subscribed to a magazine or two. Readers Digest and The Saturday Evening Post come to mind. Far fewer people subscribe to magazines these days. You can just watch the shrinking magazine rack in your local bookstore. Radio remains free. But where are we to get the news? How do we remain informed citizens? Surprisingly. some really don’t want us to be informed.

We are under threat from Socialism, an enormous and growing national debt, a major pandemic, and a threat from Communist China, just to mention the more prominent ones. We require an informed citizenry. Democrats have been trying desperately to get rid of Donald Trump since the first day that he descended the escalator. First it was the Russians, and then they have been trying to stick him with some crime ever since. The latest, of course. is the riot and invasion of the Capitol Building. But the Russians were misinformation, and the invasion of the Capitol Building was the work of outside agitators, not any speech from President Trump. They apparently organized on Twitter. Nevertheless, Nancy Pelosi has tried once again to impeach him, now that his term in office is ended. They are terrified that he might come back in 2024 to run again. As they should be. Donald Trump has done an outstanding job as president, and historians will treat him well.

Here’s Victor Davis Hanson’s clear eyed view of Ms. Pelosi’s efforts which I urge you to read in it’s entirety. And I would suggest some resistance to the idea of making all the illegal aliens citizens. There are some really bad apples among that bunch, or where did you think all the illegal drugs flowing in from Mexico were coming from? They do have some helpers on this side of the border. The Border patrol does hard, and often dirty work, and deserves our support.



What’s the Matter With Corporations? by The Elephant's Child
March 10, 2011, 8:47 pm
Filed under: Capitalism, Economy, Law, Liberalism, Statism, Taxes | Tags: , ,

Leftist protesters seem to always have it in for Big Business, or Corporations.  There was a lot of shrieking about corporations during the protests in Madison, which seems unusually odd since the whole dispute was about public employees and public sector unions, the governor, the legislature, local government and the law.  No corporations.  But it could be any protest. Leftists have it in for corporations.  They don’t like Big Business either, but it seems to be “corporations” that draw their ire. And I have to admit that I don’t quite get it.

It doesn’t seem to be bigness, I haven’t seen anyone carrying signs about “down with Big Movies”, or “down with Big Football”, or ‘Big Music,” corporate entities they may be, but nobody protests.  Corporations seem to be identified with Wall Street and Exxon, and a few other notable companies. Wall Street is viewed as the location where all the corporations live.  Could the protesters explain what a corporation is and what their specific complaint is? Probably not.  It is not logical, but a matter of seething emotion.

The whole thing undoubtedly segues into liberal hatred for “the rich.” CEO salaries and benefits are published in the annual reports of corporations and often picked up by the media, especially if they are especially large.  Envy is one of the seven deadly sins, and therefore titillating.  Forbes has just published their annual list of America’s richest people; it’s safe to assume that it sells lots of magazines, as other magazines write about the list.

America’s elites, the denizens of the humanities departments of our universities, unquestionably hate rich CEOs.  The elites have struggled to get their PhDs, and because they have them are credentialed as the smartest people — and yet here are ordinary businessmen getting astronomical salaries and golden parachutes — not professors!  Professors are stuck in lecture halls with bored students who don’t appreciate the life of the mind.

That kind of envy doesn’t make much sense.  The tenure of most CEOs is fairly short, ranging around 6 -7 years. You not only have to do most everything right, but you have to have good luck with the economy. Nobody keeps a CEO around for long who isn’t enhancing the bottom line.

So how does big business get big? There’s the business cycle kind of bigness, which means that when the economy is good and the outlook is good; salaries go up and assistants are hired, more machinery is purchased and offices are expanded.  Smaller competitors or suppliers are snapped up, and new products are added to the line.  Overenthusiasm and overreaching mean that some businesses fail.  When sales fall, some will be laid off.

Then there is the recession kind of increasing bigness.  When a large business fails, government often interferes.  If the business has a large number of employees, government often steps in and says this business is “too big to fail.” This is nonsense, but it is what  happens. Very Large Corporation is often encouraged to swallow Too Big To Fail business, and soon you have Enormous Corporation. If the object was to save jobs, it doesn’t work, for consolidated departments don’t need twice the employees. Enormous Corporation becomes too big and unwieldy and soon has to spin-off pieces. And that doesn’t even get into bailouts and subsidies.

Unfortunately when Congress starts making regulations about business, they usually make a mess of it, for they don’t understand business. In the recent Dodd-Frank business reform bill, the idea of “Too Big to Fail”— was never addressed, in spite of the damage it caused in our present recession.

Corporations are run by ordinary people. Some are good managers, and good to their people. Some are not. Public service is not the business of a corporation.  It is the business of a corporation to make money,nothing more. If so, then the people they hire can receive good salaries and the healthy business can generate innovation and ideas and fine products that make the economy grow.

We have NGOs (non-governmental organizations),  whose reason for existence is to do good works for society.  Unfortunately, they conceive their objective as raising money and lobbying governments to do their bidding.  Strange world indeed.



Barking up the Wrong Tree! by The Elephant's Child
February 7, 2011, 8:26 pm
Filed under: Capitalism, Economy, Freedom | Tags: , ,

President Obama told the U.S. Chamber of Commerce today that government and business “can and must work together.”

Rasmussen Reports found that 68% of likely U.S. voters believe that government and big business already work together against the interests of consumers and investors.  Their latest poll  shows that only 13^ disagree with that assessment, While 18 % are not sure.

The view that government and big business work together against the interests of others is shared across partisan, demographic and ideological lines.  Seventy percent of liberals and sixty-nine percent of conservatives share that view.

This indicates a massive chasm between Americans who seek freedom and self-governance and politicians who want to rule over them.

President Obama told the Chamber of Commerce today that “the role of government is to support the economic foundation by spending public money to improve transportation, education and communications systems.” Rasmussen’s earlier polling has found that 59% of voters believe that the primary purpose of government is to protect individual liberties and freedom.

That makes things fairly clear, doesn’t it.  Only 10% see managing the economy as government’s primary role.  24% see the government’s primary role as ensuring social justice.  And Americans consistently believe in lower taxes and lower government spending.




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