Guess who’s sorry they fell for the Koch brothers baloney? Oh, none other than the “U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Federation of Independent Business, and other business interests”. See, it turns out that what is good for the Koch brothers isn’t necessarily good for the rest of the business community, the country or Wall Street.
I know, you already knew that. But the business community has been following along behind Republicans for so long that they never noticed when the party went pro-chaos, post-policy, anti-law right wing anarchists. And those things are not good for business.
Back in 2010, the business community blindly championed the infamous know-nothings running under the Tea Party banner (and it was clear then that the majority of these folks are beloved precisely for their ignorance, not in spite of it) – the same people who are now ruining our economy with their hubris, greed and stupidity.
Jill Lawrence at the National Journal reported yesterday (h/t Greg Sargent at WaPo) that business is not too happy with the Tea Party. They are “bemused and in some cases frustrated by the way some presumed congressional allies are handling their jobs.”
“You don’t really know what they’re going to do or why,” says NSBA President Todd McCracken, a 20-year Washington veteran. “It used to be there were not many rewards for obstruction. Now there are no consequences.”
Tough to excuse not seeing that one coming. The party whose base showed up to townhalls armed with machine guns and consistently threatened to kill lawmakers over ObamaCare aren’t reasonable? Gosh, what a shock.
“They don’t like brinkmanship on budget and debt issues, or the more routine dysfunction that has stalled transportation and agriculture legislation important to both parties and much of the private sector.”
The business sector hates ObamCare but they are not interested in Republican showboating and don’t support blocking any bill that relates to funding ObamaCare. They can see that it’s law and they’d rather focus on tweaking the law to work better for their constituency.
What are the odds that the Republican party will be able to function pragmatically enough to actually participate in the process of legislating to that degree? Slim indeed.
Business leaders express pity for John Boehner over the unruly Tea Party caucus of wild children, but they do nothing to demonstrate that it’s possible to lead these parasites to water. They helped to create this mess but now their hands are tied, according to them.
They lament the lack of infrastructure rebuilding, something Obama and the Democrats have been pushing because it’s widely accepted that in the middle of a recession, spending on investments like infrastructure is a smart move that provides jobs and stimulates the economy. Business relies on competitive infrastructure. Try telling that the to modern day Republican Party who see infrastructure as socialism.
If the business community were really the grownups they are rumored to be, they would acknowledge their mistake and realize that it came from not properly analyzing the current political landscape.
If all they really care about is the excessive, irresponsible deregulation that the Republican Party pushes, this is what they get – because careless is as careless does. There won’t be smart, good tempered, reasonable, pragmatic, morally decent people who will push zero regulations and oversight and then turn around and demand that the taxpayers subsidize big oil during record profits. To get someone willing to do that, you get all that comes with a Tea Partier – unwillingness to legislate, anarchy, petulance, stupidity, arrogance, and most of all personal greed.
On the other hand, the business community could choose to try running responsible, morally accountable businesses that both earn a profit and give back to the community with decent wages and attempts to mitigate poisoning the air and water for their own profit. That is all the Democratic Party is asking for, and in return they are offering things that help business like consistency, growth, infrastructure – oh, and a quickly dwindling deficit.
The problem is that the business community is just as greedy as the parasitic fringe they got elected. They are not separate from the Randian narcissism that’s overtaken the GOP. And greedy people are never the smartest people in the room because they only see the short term. To wit, the reason they cite for not getting behind infrastructure bills when they desperately need infrastructure is that it is seen in “federal budgetary terms as incurring an expense rather than as creating an asset.” It’s as if these folks never took a business class.
This is the problem with modern Republicans – they’re choking on their own rhetoric. This country can’t stay competitive without reinvestments and the companies that operate here rely on those investments (aka, infrastructure) which is just another reason why they should pay their fair share of taxes like grown ups do.
Sure, they want less regulation, and workers want better pay. Who’s to say business is automatically entitled to what they want, or that it’s even good for them to get it? They haven’t shown themselves to be very good at self-regulating and the market isn’t taking care of it either, or we wouldn’t be subsidizing big business with tax breaks and socialized losses.
“CEOs and business lobbyists have sat down with lawmakers to explain what it means to them—and the economy writ large—for Congress to be so polarized and paralyzed.”
Yes, but did they get their blanky before bedtime story? Wait until the business community figures out that the Tea Party (which is nothing but a rebranding of the far right and has taken over the Republican Party) doesn’t CARE that this is problematic. They don’t care that anarchy isn’t good for business. Anarchy is what got them to DC, and got them a great salary and excellent healthcare on the taxpayer dime. They’re hardly going to grow up if it means losing entitlements.
Maybe the real issue is that the business community is not served well by the party of Big Business. Small businesses have different needs than the Koch Brothers, and perhaps that is the real problem here. The Republican Party is not really the party for small business. It’s the party of billionaire business.
So I’ll say to the business community what Republicans have been saying to poor people forever: We’ll help you when you help yourself. Get off the Tea Party crack, go to rehab, deal with reality, and take responsibility for your choices.
You got these clowns elected, now fix it. And don’t come crying to Democrats when you finally realize that the Republican Party won’t give you immigration reform or infrastructure because they can’t. Get it? They can’t because your denial helped elect amoral, irresponsible extremists who do not care about this country, and they win when we all – and that includes business – lose.
Ms. Jones is the co-founder/ editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.