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The Dwindling Republican Business Base: It's the Economy, Stupid

Discussion in 'BBS Hangout: Debate & Discussion' started by Rashmon, Jan 25, 2008.

  1. Rashmon

    Rashmon Contributing Member

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    In the current economic environment, here is an interesting article from John Dean, my favorite Nixon-era Republican criminal.

    The Dwindling Republican Business Base: It's the Economy, Stupid
    By JOHN W. DEAN

    As the stock market gyrated wildly this week, given the precarious state of the American economy, the New York Times published a table relating to anti-recession efforts in times past. In scanning it, I could not help but notice that among the last eight recessions, all but the first, in 1948, occurred during Republican presidencies. (The first occurred when Republicans controlled Congress.)

    Here are the recessions and their Republican presidents: August 1957 to April 1958 (Eisenhower), April 1960 to February 1961 (Eisenhower), December 1969 to November 1970 (Nixon), November 1973 to March 1975 (Nixon and Ford), July 1981 to November 1982 (Reagan), July 1990 to March 1991 (Reagan), and March 2001 to November 2001 (Bush II).

    As we all have watched the stock market this week, thoughts of past major crashes have no doubt popped into the minds of many. Republican presidents oversaw them. Herbert Hoover, of course, was president when the great crash of 1929 occurred, and Ronald Reagan was president with the most recent serious crash - Black Monday in 1987.

    The Republican Party has long been the favorite of the business world. But when one steps back to look at the facts objectively - as business leaders who want to remain in business must do, and now seem to be doing - the question must be asked: Is a Republican bias actually good business?

    Which Political Party Is Better For Business?

    Which political party is actually best for business? To pose the question is easy. However, to answer it objectively and honestly is not possible, for all business is not the same and the answer depends upon what kind of business one might be addressing.

    For example, hedge fund managers, who have walked away with billions in untaxed profits under Republican tax policies unavailable to other people, love the GOP. CEOs with humongous salaries and endless stock options also love the current Republican attitude of demanding tax breaks for the very rich. Big businesses with high- powered lobbyists in Washington on their payrolls to protect their interests find Republicans far friendlier to their concerns than they do Democrats. These people, of course, are among that less than one percent of Americans who have profited so gloriously under the Bush-Cheney economic policies.

    Mid-sized and small businesses - which are the overwhelming majority of businesses in the United States - have, until lately, thought that they were better off under Republicans, but they are wrong. They are just now remembering that when recessions come, they are easily wiped out, while big businesses merely make less money and often take advantage of the downturn. These people are the upper middle class and middle class of America - the people that the Republicans are slowly bleeding into non-existence, until there will be no middle class, only rich and poor.

    Fortunately, increasing numbers of all levels of business people are realizing the economic incompetence of Republicans, and their protection of the super-rich is, in the long term, bad business for everyone. Accordingly, growing numbers of voters have come to the conclusion that Republicans are not good for business. "GOP Is Losing Grip On Core Business Vote," an above-the-fold headline of the Wall Street Journal screamed last fall.

    Some Specific Reasons Businesspeople Are Leaving the GOP

    According to a number of business publication, there are several reasons for the "elephant stampede" - to use the Wall Street Journal's term. Broadly described, the disenchantment of business leaders with the GOP falls into several categories, which I have set forth without trying to rank them:

    The War In Iraq. Just as many other Americans find the war in Iraq an unqualified disaster, businesspeople tell reporters that they do not like the lies Bush and Cheney told, to take us into a war that will likely only create more terrorists hating America. Like many others, they see this as dangerous folly. In addition, the war has been a fiscal disaster, with billions thrown away and no accounting whatsoever. As a retired Westinghouse manager and lifelong Republican told the Wall Street Journal, "'We've lost control of spending,' and the administration's execution of the Iraq war has been 'incompetent.'" Businesspeople have little tolerance for incompetence; only true ideologues can over look it.

    Excessive Deficit Spending. Former chairman of the Federal Reserve Alan Greenspan is a very high-profile Republican in the business and finance communities. Greenspan told the Journal, "The Republican Party, which ruled the House, the Senate and the presidency, I no longer recognize." Similarly, New York City Mayor and billionaire businessman Michael Bloomberg recently left the GOP, complaining - as reported by the Journal - that "conservative politicians in the U.S. [are] guilty of 'lunacy' for running up deficits for future taxpayers to pay." The GOP's gigantic deficits have also weakened the dollar, making business for many much more expensive.

    Focus On Social Issues. Countless businessmen I know tell me they are exhausted with the Republicans' focus on abortion, gay marriage, and the host of social issues the party insists on putting on the front burner. Business journals have similar reports. This is not surprising, for all polls show that for most Americans, these are not the centrally important issues.

    Immigration Policy. Business Week has reported that as the Republican presidential candidates have increased their who-can-talk-the-toughest-on-immigration efforts, they are also losing support in the business community. Business Week pointed out that "in industries like agriculture, construction, landscaping, and restaurants, most employers want comprehensive immigration reform that allows undocumented workers to join a guest worker program or pursue a path to citizenship, as well as an effective way for new immigrants to work in the U.S." With the exception of John McCain, all the GOP presidential candidates start their day with a hefty dose of xenophobia.

    Health Care Policy. Many industries want the federal and state governments to address the soaring cost of health care. Not only do they need healthy workers, but health care costs are narrowing profits. Few savvy businesspeople think well of the Republican health care plans, which make health care providers and insurance companies richer at the expense of everyone else.

    Environmental Responsibility. American business is the leading polluter in America, and for years business has rebelled against efforts to regulate the damage it causes to the environment. Even now the pre-Enlightenment attitude of certain conservative Republicans toward science has enabled them to actually believe that global warming is merely a hoax. Yet more sophisticated businesspeople understand they must clean up their acts. Many know that short-term gains are leading to long-term and potential irreversible damage. Accordingly, outside the auto and fossil-fuel-related industries, businesspeople are increasingly disgusted with the failure of recent Republican Administrations (Reagan, Bush I and Bush II) to develop a realistic, responsible and comprehensive environmental policy.

    Republicans Have Proven Themselves Bad For a Good Economy

    Business, however, is only part of a broader picture for it operates - as do we all - within the American economy. Thus, there is an more fundamental question: Which political party is best for the American economy, and why?

    That will be the subject of Part II of this look at the future implications of further Republican rule. Frankly, I was surprised at what I found.

    http://writ.lp.findlaw.com/dean/20080125.html

    Discussion?
     
  2. SamFisher

    SamFisher Contributing Member

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    wnes is the new republican base.
     
  3. weslinder

    weslinder Contributing Member

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    Conservativism is good for the economy. Borrowing for handouts, entitlements, and unneccessary wars isn't. When the Republicans borrowed those platforms from the Democrats, they lost credibility on the economy.
     
  4. Rule0001

    Rule0001 Contributing Member

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    True that, we need Willard in the White House to restore order for the homies.
     
  5. Major

    Major Member

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    I'm not sure they borrowed all those platforms from the Democrats. Unnecessary wars was a new thing, basically started by Bush. "Borrowing" is not a huge Dem platform - they've mostly been for taxing to pay for their projects. Republicans are the ones that have, since the Reagan years, been fond of tax cuts without pushing very hard for spending cuts, beyond some rhetoric.
     
  6. rodrick_98

    rodrick_98 Contributing Member

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    korea? vietnam?

    though i would agree dems are for higher taxes to pay for programs, rather than borrowing.
     
  7. weslinder

    weslinder Contributing Member

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    Just like Johnson's, Bush's Presidency is the combination of the worst parts of Wilson's, Roosevelt's, and Truman's.
     
  8. hotballa

    hotballa Contributing Member

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    I can't believe you would forget Harding.
     
  9. Rashmon

    Rashmon Contributing Member

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    Let's not confuse unecessary wars, with the Bush concept of unecessary "preemptive" wars.
     
  10. hotballa

    hotballa Contributing Member

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    wouldnt vietnam or Korea also fall under preemptive wars since the decision to go in there were aided in large part by the domino theory?
     
  11. SamFisher

    SamFisher Contributing Member

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    The korean war was to preempt the north korean invasion which already happened?
     
  12. rodrick_98

    rodrick_98 Contributing Member

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    i'm pretty sure all 3 wars were preemptive, and all were to prevent the spread of something. communism or islamic terrorists.

    and as far as unnecessary:

    we are still in korea - still a communist "threat"
    vietnam was a complete failure - is a communist nation
    iraq has been a bad decision from the beginning - tbd
     
  13. weslinder

    weslinder Contributing Member

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    None of Bush's policies are rooted in Harding's. In my opinion, ineffective Presidents like Harding and Carter are less dangerous that effective bad Presidents like Johnson and Bush.
     
  14. Major

    Major Member

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    Certainly true - though if I understand correctly, those wars tended to be supported by both parties. There wasn't quite the division going into those that there was with Iraq.

    Similarly, Iraq I was more of a bipartisan effort as well, though that could be argued as an elective war also.
     
  15. hotballa

    hotballa Contributing Member

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    Vietnam then. Hence the usage of the word "or".
     
  16. hotballa

    hotballa Contributing Member

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    in terms of corruption and all sort of financial shenanigans, I'd think you have to say that the Bush admin is on par with the Harding admin on that one.
     
  17. SamFisher

    SamFisher Contributing Member

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    to preempt the viet cong insurgency which had already happened?
     
  18. deepblue

    deepblue Member

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    I guess if we only had dems in white house, we would never have a recession? Yup the 2001 recession is obviously GW's fault. :rolleyes:
     
  19. hotballa

    hotballa Contributing Member

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    we were there before that weren't we? just not in an official capacity
     
  20. rodrick_98

    rodrick_98 Contributing Member

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    i would have to look up the numbers, but the congress and pres have historically been in agreement prior to an invasion. everyone (myself included) gets a (false) sense of patriotism, like we are off to save the world.



    kind of a ;) ;) deal.



    there are always special forces troops. if you hear about them, they aren't doing their jobs properly.
     

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