All Bashing Business Does Is Make Us Mad As Hell

It looks like Democrats in the White House, Congress, and state legislatures have managed to come up with a losing strategy for the upcoming mid-term elections: paint business as the enemy.

That might work when things are going well economically. But when they try something like that when businesses are struggling and voters who might otherwise be employed see the Democrats going after businesses that might have hired them, they get pissed off. How is it the Dems think that by demonizing the very engine of economic development they rely upon they will somehow retain control of Congress, state legislatures, or governors offices?

Something significant is happening on the electoral battlefield, and it has an "Inc." by its name. Many candidates running as Republicans could as easily be sitting for a business profile. Twenty months of Democratic business-bashing has not turned the electorate against entrepreneurs. Quite the opposite. This election is highlighting a political turn, not unlike that of the late 1970s, in which voters are looking to free-market, pro-growth candidates to turn back government.


What's behind this shift? Call it a supercharged dose of Democrats and failing liberal governance. As Americans for Tax Reform head Grover Norquist notes, the country has been witness to "pure, distilled government." It has been led by an administration staffed with career politicians and academics who have insisted that government can solve all. It hasn't worked. "When Washington fails, what's the alternative?" asks Mr. [Grover] Norquist. "It's people with real-life experience, who can do real-live things." Business folk have real-life experience.

Some Democrats have been trying to shift the perceptions of their constituents in an effort to get re-elected, but their actions, speeches, and votes are a matter of public record and no amount of spin will be able to explain away their hostility towards business, and by extension, the American economy. (One of our local Democrat Congresscritters is running for the Senate and has been painting himself as a fiscal conservative..except for all those votes he cast supporting TARP, ObamaCare, the $800 billion+ stimulus package, and a host of other wasteful and useless government spending programs.)

President Obama's advisors have no problem showing their disdain for business. But then we must remember that none of them, not one, has ever owned a business. They're all academics or career politicians with little if any experience outside their small self-contained world. They've never had to meet payrolls, worry about how new government regulations or tax laws will affect their businesses, or deal with the ever increasing amount of paperwork with which Congress, the White House, and the entrenched bureaucracy have been burdening business owners. Is it any wonder anti-business attitudes by those higher-ups have resulted in the hostile backlash Democrats are now experiencing? What's worse as that these same 'advisors' don't understand why there's any backlash at all. They have little or no understanding of the Law of Unintended Consequences.

The American people have come to realize the Democrats are doing everything in their power to ensure the American economy will continue to flounder, if not through malice then by ignorance and ideological blindness. Regardless of the reason, Americans have had enough and are calling the Democrats on it at all levels.

This isn't the first time the American electorate has been angry at Congress, nor will it be the last. But what makes it different this time, what makes the American people more than just angry, but livid, is the amount of information available to them about the goings on in Washington as compared to the past.

There are two major developments...that are new this year and insufficiently noted, but they're going to shape election outcomes in 2010 and beyond.

First, Washington is being revealed in a new way.

The American people now know, "with real sophistication," everything that happens in the capital. "I find a much more knowledgeable electorate, and it is a real-time response," Ms. Blackburn says. "We hear about it even as the vote is taking place."

Voters come to rallies carrying research—"things they pulled off the Internet, forwarded emails," copies of bills, roll-call votes. The Internet isn't just a tool for organization and fund-raising. It has given citizens access to information they never had before. "The more they know," Ms. Blackburn observes, "the less they like Washington."

Is it any wonder? In the past many of the Congressional activities were shielded from public by distance and time, with voters in the dark about what their representatives and senators were voting on or proposing for legislation. Unless one read the Congressional Record, assuming they could even find a copy, little detail about much of the activities of Congress were covered by the media. Once C-SPAN arrived a little more light was shed upon Congressional shenanigans, but only if one happened to be watching at the right time. Then came the Internet and, after a bit of a shakeout period, all Congressional wheeling and dealing was available to the public 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. It wasn't so easy to hide anything from the voting public any more. And once blogs came into being, Washington is being scrutinized as it never has been before. No wonder the American public is pissed off at The-Powers-That-Be.

But wait, there's more!

How does 2010 compare with 1994 in terms of historical significance? Ms. Blackburn says there's an unnoted story there, too. Whereas 1994 was historic as a party victory, a shift in political power, this year feels more organic, more from-the-ground, and potentially deeper. She believes 2010 will mark "a philosophical shift," the beginning of a change in national thinking regarding the role of the individual and the government.

This "will be remembered as the year the American people said no" to the status quo. The people "do not trust" those who make the decisions far away. They want to restore balance.

And hence, the TEA parties. They go outside the usual political parties or ideologies. They're angry at everyone in office, not just Democrats. It's why a number of TEA party supported candidates have caused electoral upsets of so-called 'establishment' candidates at state and national levels, including a number of incumbents who saw themselves go down to defeat in their state primaries, never reaching the national elections in November. They want change of the kind that won't bankrupt the nation and indemnify our children, grandchildren, and perhaps our great-grandchildren. The days of spending like there's no tomorrow on programs, projects, and government agencies with no real value are gone. The days of eroding our rights one by one using small steps to bypass the scrutiny of the American people are gone.

To quote the late Peter Finch as newsman Howard Beale: “We're mad as hell and we're not going to take it any more!”