JIM CREES COLUMN: The myth concerning job creators

The main goal of any business is to create a profit, jobs are coincidental

LANGUAGE

a: the words, their pronunciation, and the methods of combining them used and understood by a community

b: a systematic means of communicating ideas or feelings by the use of conventionalized signs, sounds, gestures, or marks having understood meanings

I enjoy following the latest trends in the use of language by politicians – politi-speak or politicese.

In the U.S., politi-speak is a singularly odd language in that it is carefully designed not necessarily to inform or communicate ideas, but is rather a language created to deceive.

It sounds like English. It reads like English. But it really isn’t English. Take, for example, the term or phrase “job creators.”

GOP politicians have combined the words “job” and “creators” and turned the phrase into something it simply isn’t.

CREATING JOBS: President Barack Obama speaks Monday, at West Wilkes High School in Millers Creek, N.C., to promote his $447 billion job-creation package. (MCT photo)

The John Boehners and Eric Cantors of the nation claim “job creators” are threatened by any proposed tax increase or regulatory action. (Even state politicians from our area have tried to use the phrase to their advantage.)

They claim if taxes are raised on corporate neighbors, Big Business or anyone else for that matter, the “job creators” will be so terrified at losing profits they will take off and head elsewhere.

The “job creators” simply will not be able to create jobs. They’ll be forced to head for Mexico, India or China. The “job creators” won’t want to create a business at all under the oppressive regime that crushes the will to get up and go to work in the morning.

In fact, the GOP would have you believe “job creators” are the latest beleaguered minority in these United States.

The last bigotry is the bigotry against “job creators.”

But … here’s the deal.

Despite the elegant use of politi-speak, the “job creators” are something of a myth.

Look, the term “job creators” was first tossed around during the Bush II years.

There is, however, a problem.

The track record of President Bush in creating jobs while mollycoddling the “job creators” was, in fact, abysmal.

Already back in January 2009, the Republican-friendly Wall Street Journal (it is a Murdoch paper after all) posted an article entitled, “Bush on Jobs: the Worst Track Record on Record.” The article noted that Bush’s economic record was worse than every president since World War II. (That’s the Journal’s reporting. Not mine.)

Job creation by sucking up to “job creators” with deregulation and stunning tax breaks has been called by just about every responsible analyst an “… epic failure.”

Fact is, the average household income in this country began dropping like a rock in 2001 – AFTER the Bush tax cuts.

Well over a year ago, the New York Times published a review of presidential economic policy moves since Eisenhower. The study (carefully vetted by leading economists) showed “… George W. Bush, the first MBA president, was a historic failure when it came to expanding GDP, producing jobs and even fueling stock market growth.”

Ouch.

Look. Even though the GOP continues to claim they want to protect “job creators” from invasive government that sends them overseas – or shuts them down – the truth is that government tax policy doesn’t really influence job creation all that much.

It never has.

The numbers prove it.

A slew of recent surveys and studies all show that it isn’t regulations or tax structures that are hurting big business and killing small business. Corporations are making record profits. The federal tax burden across the board is at a 60-year record low.

What is killing job creation is big business planners who look at the bottom line and simply eliminate jobs.

Ladies and gentlemen of the jury.

Let me explain.

In any business – big or small, corporate or private, service or industry, retail or manufacturing – in any business the biggest expense is salary and benefits for employees.

Every business person carrying out a weekly, monthly or quarterly review of their operation almost always first looks at the head count.

How many employees are needed for this operation to be profitable? How many do we actually have?

If there are more employees than are needed to generate a good, clean profit, some of them will find themselves out on the bricks.

That’s life.

No business. NO BUSINESS in the world was ever created in order to create jobs.

It’s a bluff. It’s a myth.

Business people and entrepreneurs create business to make money. A business is not started to create jobs. Jobs are certainly created, but that is incidental to the purpose. As long as the job created is contributing to the “bottom line” it will exist. When the job that was created no longer beefs up the profit margin, the job will be uncreated.

The GOP’s highly-lauded “job creators” are only creating jobs coincidentally.

They are creating wealth.

And let me be perfectly and shockingly clear, there’s nothing wrong with creating a business to produce wealth. NOTHING.

But there is something wrong with trying to bluff folks into thinking that GE, GM or anyone else is a “job creator.”

The job created is a question of profit – not general goodwill, kindness or human decency.

The loss of the same job is a matter of collateral damage to drooping profits caused by crushing national debt, stupid trade policies (generated by both Democratic and Republican administrations past and present), not by some attack on “job creators.”

The concern for “job creators” is just another political red herring.

Shinola.

Jim Crees is editor of the Osceola Edition of the Pioneer and the Lake County Star. E-mail him at jcrees@pioneergroup.com.

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Posted by Jim Crees

Jim is the editor in chief of the Pioneer, Herald Review and Lake County Star. He can be reached by phone at (231) 592-8360 or by e-mail at jcrees@pioneergroup.com.

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