Skip to comments.For Obama, Working for Business Was Working For Enemy
Posted on 06/26/2012 3:41:35 AM PDT by Kaslin
Mitt Romney's main argument for his presidential candidacy is that if voters want a leader who can fix the economy, they should elect someone who knows and understands -- and likes -- business.
Barack Obama, Romney says at every opportunity, is not that man. "The president has the most anti-business, anti-investment, anti-jobs administration I think I've ever seen," Romney said recently on Fox News. "Some of these liberals say they like a strong economy, but then they act like they don't like business," Romney added during a campaign stop in Colorado.
Both sides can debate the administration's policies for the rest of the campaign. But there's no doubt there is a profoundly anti-business streak in the president's background.
New evidence comes in the just-released biography "Barack Obama: The Story," by David Maraniss. Obama spent little time in business, but he did have a job at a company called Business International for about a year after he graduated from Columbia University in 1983. The book contains new details about the future president's brief stint in corporate America.
Obama was a low-level editor in Reference Services, working on reports describing economic conditions in various foreign countries. By all accounts, he disliked the work, not just because it was pedestrian and boring, but because it was in business.
"He calls it working for the enemy," Obama's mother, Ann Dunham, wrote after a phone conversation with her son, "because some of the reports are written for commercial firms that want to invest in (Third World) countries."
Writing to a former girlfriend, Maraniss says, Obama also "expressed a distaste for the corporate world." And in his engaging but unreliable memoir "Dreams From My Father," Obama described his time at Business International this way: "Like a spy behind enemy lines, I arrived every day at my mid-Manhattan office. ..." Obama wrote that he took the job only after his applications to several civil rights organizations were ignored.
Obama subsequently quit Business International, became a community organizer, attended law school, briefly practiced public interest law, taught a college class and got into politics. He had several jobs, but never again in business.
Yet as Obama told it in "Dreams From My Father," he sometimes felt tempted to sell out during his time at Business International. After getting a promotion, Obama wrote, "I had my own office, my own secretary, money in the bank. Sometimes, coming out of an interview with Japanese financiers or German bond traders, I would catch my reflection in the elevator doors -- see myself in a suit and tie, a briefcase in hand -- and for a split second I would imagine myself as a captain of industry, barking out orders, closing the deal, before I remembered who it was that I had told myself I wanted to be and felt pangs of guilt for my lack of resolve."
Maraniss discovered most of that wasn't true; while Obama did have a tiny office, he didn't have his own secretary, didn't meet with financiers and bond traders, didn't even wear a suit to work. But the one true thing in that passage is Obama's antipathy for the business world.
And Barack isn't the only Obama who feels that way. Over the last few years, Michelle Obama has often described their mutual distaste for business. As she tells it, as newly minted graduates of prestigious law schools, both she and her spouse could have cashed in with high-paying jobs at wealthy corporations. It was enticing, but they chose another course.
"We left corporate America, which is a lot of what we're asking young people to do," Mrs. Obama said at a campaign stop in Ohio in February 2008. "Don't go into corporate America. You know, become teachers. Work for the community. Be social workers. Be a nurse. Those are the careers that we need..."
The first lady still says that sort of thing. In a commencement speech at Oregon State University last week, she described how she once had a "corporate" job with "all the traditional markers of success: the fat paycheck, the fancy office," but it left her unfulfilled. So she fled the business world -- as did her husband -- and she now urges others to leave as well.
It's a way of viewing business, and life, that could not be more different from Mitt Romney's, whose father actually was a captain of industry, and who grew up to be one, too. When it comes to business, it's hard to imagine a clearer choice between candidates.
And here I was, going around telling people that he had never had a real job.
What a liar I am.
“As she tells it, as newly minted graduates of prestigious law schools, both she and her spouse could have cashed in with high-paying jobs at wealthy corporations. It was enticing, but they chose another course.”
Since those were pre-affirmative action days, I seriously doubt they could make the case to any corporation that they could be assets. Today they would just be hired to fill diversity quotas, calling themselves attorneys while they worked as clerical assistants.
juust a little hypocritical maybe ? Where and in what style will she be vacationing this year? Do they really get away with it?
Obama is an expert on working for the enemy, but I’m still not going to listen to him.
A proved thief and liar, yet over 50% voted for the buffoon.
Neither will I
How could you? Shame on you ;-)
"'He calls it working for the enemy,'" Obama's mother, Ann Dunham, wrote after a phone conversation with her son, 'because some of the reports are written for commercial firms that want to invest in (Third World) countries.'"
This statement, if true, and if the "because" reason for his complaint was as his mother stated, then the statement reveals a serious gap in his understanding of the ideas of freedom and economic matters, and helps to explain his animus toward individual economic freedom and the pathway to wealth creation.
Although the following has been posted in the past, it may help to explain the great "gap" highlighted above. If readers of this thread have read it previously, then just skip. If not, perhaps it is worth copying and sharing with acquaintances who might be persuaded to compare the President's policies with those which built the nation.
"The Founders' principle of freedom for individual enterprise brought America from the crude tools of ancient Europe to the most free and prosperous destination for oppressed peoples. Essay excerpted from "Our Ageless Constitution."
"Agriculture, manufactures, commerce, and navigation, the four pillars of our prosperity, are the most thriving when left most free to individual enterprise." - Thomas Jefferson
"The enviable condition of the people of the United States is often too much ascribed to the physical advantages of their soil & climate .... But a just estimate of the happiness of our country will never overlook what belongs to the fertile activity of a free people and the benign influence of a responsible government." - James Madison
America's Constitution did not mention freedom of enterprise per se, but it did set up a system of laws to secure individual liberty and freedom of choice in keeping with Creator-endowed natural rights. Out of these, free enterprise flourished naturally. Even though the words "free enterprise' are not in the Constitution, the concept was uppermost in the minds of the Founders, typified by the remarks of Jefferson and Madison as quoted above. Already, in 1787, Americans were enjoying the rewards of individual enterprise and free markets. Their dedication was to securing that freedom for posterity.
The learned men drafting America's Constitution understood history - mankind's struggle against poverty and government oppression. And they had studied the ideas of the great thinkers and philosophers. They were familiar with the near starvation of the early Jamestown settlers under a communal production and distribution system and Governor Bradford's diary account of how all benefited after agreement that each family could do as it wished with the fruits of its own labors. Later, in 1776, Adam Smith's INQUIRY INTO THE NATURE AND CAUSES OF THE WEALTH OF NATIONS and Say's POLITICAL ECONOMY had come at just the right time and were perfectly compatible with the Founders' own passion for individual liberty. Jefferson said these were the best books to be had for forming governments based on principles of freedom. They saw a free market economy as the natural result of their ideal of liberty. They feared concentrations of power and the coercion that planners can use in planning other peoples lives; and they valued freedom of choice and acceptance of responsibility of the consequences of such choice as being the very essence of liberty. They envisioned a large and prosperous republic of free people, unhampered by government interference.
The Founders believed the American people, possessors of deeply rooted character and values, could prosper if left free to:
Such a free market economy was, to them, the natural result of liberty, carried out in the economic dimension of life. Their philosophy tended to enlarge individual freedom - not to restrict or diminish the individual's right to make choices and to succeed or fail based on those choices. The economic role of their Constitutional government was simply to secure rights and encourage commerce. Through the Constitution, they granted their government some very limited powers to:
Adam Smith called it "the system of natural liberty." James Madison referred to it as "the benign influence of a responsible government." Others have called it the free enterprise system. By whatever name it is called, the economic system envisioned by the Founders and encouraged by the Constitution allowed individual enterprise to flourish and triggered the greatest explosion of economic progress in all of history. Americans became the first people truly to realize the economic dimension of liberty.
Footnote: Our Ageless Constitution, W. David Stedman & La Vaughn G. Lewis, Editors (Asheboro, NC, W. David Stedman Associates, 1987) Part III: ISBN 0-937047-01-5
Thanks for another great post
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.