Here's a Capitalist That Doesn't Understand Capitalism



let me just oppose two things for you here Robert rice wrote this marillion piece for the Huffington Post this was published I think yesterday what is today the 18th through the day before yesterday called the myth of the free market and how to make the economy work for us and I've been saying this for years I mean if you've been you know regular listener to or viewer of this program you probably can recite this near sleep but there is no such thing as a free market it's just plain old flat-out doesn't exist and Robert rice comes right out and says that you know in fact he says not only does a free market well first of all he points out this this this meme that the right wing wants us to believe all right that the free market is infinite in its wisdom the free market solves all problems as he has to quote Robert Reich our former labor secretary in the Clinton ministration the best cabinet officer of any presidency in I was going to say in my lifetime but at least in since I've been an adult he says one of the most deceptive ideas continuously sounded by the right and their fathomless think tanks and media outlets is that the free market is natural and inevitable existing outside and beyond government and by this view he says if some people aren't paid enough to live on markets determine they're not worth enough if others rake in billions they must be worth it if millions of Americans are unemployed or their paychecks are shrinking and their work two or three part-time jobs no idea what they're gonna make next month or next week hey that's too bad it's just the way the market works because the free market knows best right and then Robert rice I mean this is a guy's a real economist right he says in reality the free market is a bunch of rules about one what can be owned and traded the genome slaves nuclear materials babies votes so we regulate what can be traded and owned to on what terms things can be traded equal access to the internet right to organize unions corporate monopolies how long patent protections last number three under what conditions which drugs are legal to sell in which ones aren't what about unsafe foods deceptive Ponzi schemes uninsured derivatives dangerous workplaces number four what's private and what's public police roads clean air clean water healthcare good schools parks and playgrounds and number five how to pay for what do we pay for things with taxes with users fees with individual pricing and so on he says these rules don't exist in nature they're human creations governments don't intrude on free markets governments organize and maintain them markets aren't free of rules but the rules are what create the market and then he goes on to say you know but the rich don't want you to know this they want you to think that there's some sort of magical thing I mean in a recent column for The Wall Street Journal Cypress Semiconductor president and CEO and rich guy TJ Rogers tried to defend capitalists and in the process showed that he really doesn't understand how markets work at all Rogers editorial was pretty much your standard right wing talking point piece about how important so-called job creators are to the economy without rich people like him he said there would be no investors no businesses and no jobs and therefore raising taxes on rich people like him is counterproductive because it sucks away from capital from the people who can best use it to prove his point Rodgers used his own example he said and this is what he wrote in law student Wall Street Journal he said a couple of years ago I decided to invest in my hometown of Oshkosh Wisconsin by building a 1.2 million dollar lakefront restaurant that restaurant permanently employees now permanently employs 65 people and an investment of 18,000 dollars per job a figure consistent with us small businesses it progressive taxation in the name of fairness had taken my extra 1.2 million dollars and spent it on a government stimulus program with 65 jobs have been created end of quote now other than being one of the most stupid questions I've ever seen even a rhetorical question in The Wall Street Journal what Rodgers is saying here is that he is responsible for the jobs created by his restaurant and that any attempt to raise taxes on wealthy individuals like him would take away the resources necessary to create jobs and this kind of arguments become so common so ingrained in the right-wing meme machine in the 32 years since Reagan took office that it's easy to forget how wrong it is and contrary to what Rodgers claims in this Wall Street Journal peace business owners don't create successful businesses or the jobs that they generate consumers do if he had no customers in his restaurant he wouldn't have a restaurant despite what you may hear from the Talking Heads on Fox so-called news and CNBC economies are driven from the ground up from the bottom up they're run on demand by how much consumers actually want to buy goods or services if a business doesn't mean an existing demand in the workplace in the marketplace or create demand through innovation it won't succeed it's that simple I know this firsthand back at the 80s Louise and I started a travel agency down in Atlanta I didn't know a lot of cash we'd been running a home for abused kids I was pretty broke so I used by fifteen thousand dollar line of credit from my American Express card as our startup capital I took a risk and what made that risk turn into a six million dollar a year business within three years and gave our travel agency an edge over its competitors is the same thing that gave TJ Rogers business an edge over his competitors we met a demand in the marketplace unlike other travel agencies ours identified a niche of smaller businesses or less frequent travelers to serve the big travel agencies like American Express only wanted the big business of the big corporations and the small travel agencies only wanted to sell cruises to rich people there's nobody in our growing part of Atlanta who wanted the smaller business travelers so we were ahead of the curve and we were rewarded for it by both making a lot of money and having our business featured on the front page of The Wall Street Journal although much of it happened after we sold that business in 1968 that little company we started on my fifteen thousand dollar line of credit went on to sell over 250 million dollars worth of travel and then just three years ago merged with a multi-billion dollar travel company as long as our economy unfortunately was long after I sold it as long as our economy is based on some sort of free market system businesses are gonna succeed or fail based on market demand for their services and that's why TJ Rodgers argument that wealthy people are responsible for the jobs their businesses create is crazy even if the government did tax him so highly that he couldn't use his own money to finance his restaurant he could have taken out a lot of credit like hot like the way we started our travel agency like most small businesses do and his restaurant still would have generated the jobs he brags about his Wall Street Journal column and it would have generated those jobs because it met a niche of demand in the Oshkosh Wisconsin marketplace the big secret the right-wingers like TJ Rogers don't want you to know is that we don't need wealthy entrepreneurs like him to make businesses successful worker cooperatives can do it entrepreneurs can do it people like me with a line of credit with American Express and we started this radio show in my living room with nothing this is how business should be done and can be done this is the Thom Hartmann program and once we get the giant monopolies out of the way if we'd only enforce the sherman antitrust act you know starting small small business right now is an all-time low because of this crazy reaganomics




Comments
  1. I disagree with the ground up argument .. how could you know consumers wanted when some of the things they now want never existed 20 years ago ..? 10 people have ideas , one of those takes off ..people decide to buy it now that they have seen it .. that same guy goes on to build a second different product ..people also love it and buy it but never knew much about it until he presented the way it could be used ..  He then goes on to build more products that are quite impacting on sales and society ..  Would you prefer to give a tax break to this guy who is wealthy ,driven by innovation , and clearly creates jobs or give equally to the others …who probably will end up working for him ? .. This story could so easily be Steve JOBS .. .. think about it guys.. Always follow the motivation ..
    I know who I rather put my money in ..the guy with the runs on the board .. not governments who do not know how to use money ..ask :what is their motivation ? Governments are driven to get power , stay in power and create more rules ..that's their job ,that's the world they live in .. Innovators are driven to create .. not to hoard /waste  money

  2. Rodgers is worth 80 million just in his own stock. 1.2 million more paid in taxes would have left him plenty to start his restaurant. And am only responding to the statement that he couldn't have built the restaurant if his taxes were higher.

  3. Violence only makes a problem bigger. And, non violence is not synomynous with pacifism. It's easier to pull the trigger than finding peaceful means to confront a broken system.

  4. Where there is no democracy in the production of wealth created by those who work….there will be those few who so often through being born into monarchy (inheritance) or ruthlessness (anti-social behavior) reach the sanctuary (legal protections enforced via weaponry) that facilitate (enable) their ability to take the surplus (wealth) that others generate (labor)

  5. Demand is not enough to run an economy. There has always been demand for food, but yet hundreds of millions, if not billions, have starved. Production comes before the consumption.

  6. The rich for the most part do create most of the jobs. I know your gonna say consumers do, but production comes before consumption. Entrepreneurs hire ppl before the consumers have bought their products.

  7. The fact that the "rich as job creators" argument is blindly defended in a society that cares so much about democracy is an indictment of it's systemic corruption, since in a real democracy the workers should have the right to vote on what they wanna do with their businesses' profits. The fact that this "job creator" class exists in the first place is what's fundamentally broken about us.

  8. What amazes me is as loudly the complain about government regulation and taxes they eagerly have their hands out for bailouts and regulations that protect their monopolies.

  9. The funny thing to me is that these guys want to be thanked and treated well for doing something that is mostly intended to earn themselves money.

    They act like we're all supposed to kiss the ring, but they never seem too acknowledge that they are getting more money because their employees are turning resources into a product, and it's their skill and labor that is producing it.

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