"Frank VanderSloot grew up a poor kid in rural Idaho. His father made $300 a month. His clothes came from the Salvation Army. Yet through determination and hard work—and with the help of America's free-enterprise system—today he's the successful CEO of a global supplier of wellness products.
"VanderSloot said his life changed forever on April 20. That's when President Obama's campaign created the first presidential 'enemies list' since the Nixon era. Eight private citizens were singled out for their donations to Romney. They committed no crimes, sought no attention, and yet they became the subject of Obama's scorn." From Heritage.org
This is a great video to watch with our kids. Frank talks about the American dream, the secrets of his success, and why America needs more successful entrepreneurs.
This is also an opportunity to talk about the Constitution, and how it can protect us from tyrannical leaders.
Like the hostages jetting from Iran the day Reagan raised his right hand, America’s economy is about to bust its chains.
Not everyone will celebrate, even though they should.
America wants to recover.
In all our history, recoveries follow crashes. Usually, the deeper the dip, the steeper the climb back out. The only crisis with a recovery worse than Obama’s is the one that led to policies even more collectively transformative than his.
Builders, growers, producers, achievers—that is, employers--don’t know whether the next blow from the White House will aim at their taxes, their energy, their emissions, their employees’ tort rights, their health care costs, or the very legitimacy of their success and earnings.
Untold trillions of dollars—investment capital that dwarfs what Obama borrowed from China for his unstimulating infusion to the public sector—is sitting safely, unproductively on the sidelines until the people who invest it feel safe that Washington wants them to produce and succeed, not salute and comply.
Mitt doesn’t have to be a genius to unleash a brilliant expansion
The unfair advantage of leaders who believe in free enterprise is this: they don’t have to know what the next big thing is. Freedom will find it. And the next one.
Supply and demand send the signals that greedy, attentive capitalists and entrepreneurs turn into personal fortunes, with the happy byproduct of rising markets, lots of jobs, and lots of associated commerce. More people working. More people buying. More homeowners. More youth with a chance to become productive adults.
Pity poor Obama who has to choose, either by ideology or crony imperatives, upon whom to lavish borrowed billions, hoping for growth in this sector or that. Whether he’s humiliated the “shovel-ready projects” and Solyndras and Volts came to naught, or smug in the comfortable knowledge of what his ill-enriched cohorts socked away for his future, we may never know.
But it all did nothing for his legacy or chances for reelection, and even less for the economy and Americans’ quality of life.
Ronald Reagan understood this. He spoke almost mystically of the power of free Americans vanquishing both Soviet totalitarianism and the vaunted planned economies of the Asian tiger states. Sam Donaldson and Dan Rather were as embarrassed by the Cowboy as was the Harvard faculty.
Except, a miracle happened. America won the Cold War without firing a shot (not counting the Grenada rescue), produced more jobs from 1980 to 1990 than Europe and Asia combined, and ended the 90’s as the globe’s unquestioned super power.
Reagan didn’t have to guess whether the computer or agriculture or transportation was the best bet. He created a free environment that welcomed enterprise. Then we watched things boom.
The Left and media never forgave him. They repay Reagan’s triumph today by body snatching out-of-context quotes and bargains to absurdly argue he was too moderate and reasonable for today’s Republican Party.
In reality, they hated Reagan as much as they hate his successors, especially the more moderate Romney, as well they should. Romney combines Reagan’s belief in free enterprise with technical management and budget skills the Gipper had to hire out for.
Romney is a genius, and intends to find the waste and inefficiency in the executive branch.
If Reagan’s mission and contribution was to remind Americans theirs was the best Constitution and system in the world, and that freedom could succeed, Romney’s is to tackle the excess bloat and inertia of an entitled society and ballooning public sector, spending and spinning out of control.
Reagan had to inspire and persuade the people. Romney has to tame and reform their institutions and parasitic governing bodies. It’s probably the harder task. It’s also one he’s equipped for.
If you had to pick a skill set for someone who might have the tools to reform a sprawling, out-of-control-federal bureaucracy, you couldn’t do better than a private equity turn around artist. The same eye that can absorb budgets, spreadsheets, market opportunities, and operations reports can focus sharp scrutiny on federal offices and expenditures.
The same rigor that values results over promises in the marketplace can elevate results over intentions in public programs.
Imagine the terror of department budget protectors and human resource managers, contemplating an administration and management that can provide better services for constituents, with fewer dollars and fewer employees.
What’s ugly to them should be music to Americans.
Liberals won’t be happy regardless.
As the economy grows and national and domestic budgets pull out of their nosedive, relief will give way to complacency. As they did with Reagan, the media left will magnify every ill or injustice they can conjure. We will again hear in intimate detail, with front page photo spreads, about the unemployed, the hungry (if they aren’t obese) and all who aren’t thriving as robustly , as the big winners in the renewed economy.
It won’t matter that donations to charities and other nonprofits are surging. Nor will it give pause that state and local governments that recently faced steep layoffs are now flush and deciding how to allocate surpluses.
Worldview about government’s proper role draws as much from faith as from pragmatism. Prosperity will not dampen the faith of the anointed who believe wealth is for spreading, not for earning.
Will Libertarians see an opportunity for progress or only an infidel to vote against?
Walking in conservative/libertarian circles for two decades, I’ve come to realize there are two (at least) valid variables at work. One is more abstract and emotional: state control vs. liberty. The other is more bottom line and empirical: what works vs. what fails.
The approaches aren’t necessarily in conflict; they just operate from different foundations and visions. The gulf explains many tensions on the right. I’m more an ideological, liberty guy. Many libertarian friends disdain Romney because he misses some things and doesn’t touch all their philosophical erogenous zones.
Yes, it would be exhilarating to have world-beating philosopher kings with the skills and support to become president. But leading, and being chosen leader, takes certain skills too. From the world of the bottom line, I doubt the nation will ever do better, or again come close, to Mitt Romney.
The existential threats we face are insolvency, bureaucratic and leadership incompetence, and political priorities that ignore practical needs. Consider Romney’s experience, skills, and achievements of record in the private, public, and nonprofit sectors.
There may never have been a candidate in history better positioned to do to what the nation desperately needs now.
Thank you, Mr. President. I appreciate the kind words and your invitation here today.
If there’s one thing we’ve learned this election season, it’s that a few words from Bill Clinton can do any man a lot of good.
After that introduction, I guess all I have to do is wait a day or two for the bounce.
Since serving as President here in America, President Clinton has devoted himself to lifting the downtrodden around the world. One of the best things that can happen to any cause, to any people, is to have Bill Clinton as its advocate. That is how needy and neglected causes have become global initiatives. It is that work that invites us here today.
As I have watched the astounding impact of this Initiative from afar, I have been impressed by the extraordinary power you have derived by harnessing together different people of different backgrounds, and different institutions of different persuasions. You have fashioned partnerships across traditional boundaries — public and private, for-profit and nonprofit, charitable and commercial.
On a smaller scale, I have seen partnerships like this work before. In Massachusetts, two social pioneers brought corporations and government and volunteers together to form City Year, the model for Americorps. I sat with then candidate for President Bill Clinton as he investigated the life-changing successes which occurred when young people came together for a year of service, linked in teams with corporate sponsors. Then, as the head of the 2002 Winter Olympic Games, I saw again the stunning success than comes when the disparate elements of a community join together in unity, to overcome challenges that had seemed insurmountable before.
The Clinton Global Initiative has also demonstrated the effectiveness of entrepreneurship and social enterprise. You endeavor to not only comfort the afflicted, but to also change lives thorough freedom, free enterprise, and the incomparable dignity of work.
Free enterprise has done more to bless humanity than any other economic system not only because it is the only system that creates a prosperous middle class, but also because it is the only system where the individual enjoys the freedom to guide and build his or her own life. Free enterprise cannot only make us better off financially, it can make us better people.
Ours is a compassionate nation. We look around us and see withering suffering. Our hearts break. While we make up just 4.5 percent of the world’s population, we donate nearly a quarter of all global foreign aid—more than twice as much as any other country. And Americans give more than money. Pastors like Rick Warren lead mission trips that send thousands of Americans around the world, bringing aid and comfort to the poorest places on the planet. American troops are first on the scene of natural disasters. An earthquake strikes Haiti and care packages from America are among the first to arrive – and not far behind are former Presidents Clinton and Bush.
But too often our passion for charity is tempered by our sense that our aid is not always effective. We see stories of cases where American aid has been diverted to corrupt governments. We wonder why years of aid and relief seem never to extinguish the hardship, why the suffering persists decade after decade.
Have you ever tried to convince a friend that capitalism is a far better system than socialism?
Did you prepare, cite facts and figures to support your view, but still your friend remained unpersuaded?
Many people have been taught that free enterprise is immoral or unfair. We will not be able to influence them unless we change our approach.
Until people understand the moral case for capitalism, government will keep growing, and freedom will continue to shrink.
Based on his best-selling book "The Road to Freedom," AEI President Arthur C. Brooks explains how we can make the case for free enterprise by conveying what is in our hearts. "We have to see that we're not in an economic battle for the future of America," Arthur says. "We're in a moral battle."
This video lasts less than 8 minutes, and shows how we can be more persuasive. We can effectively make the moral case for free enterprise and show the pitfalls of a dependency culture.
How to Win the Fight for Free Enterprise
Speech by Arthur Brooks, at the Heritage Foundation
"Entrepreneurship, personal responsibility, and upward mobility: these traditions are at the heart of the free enterprise system, and have long been central to America’s exceptional culture. In recent years, however, policymakers have dramatically weakened these traditions – by exploding the size of government, propping up their corporate cronies, and trying to reorient our system from rewarding merit to redistributing wealth.
"In The Road to Freedom
, Arthur Brooks shows that this trend cannot be reversed through materialistic appeals about the economic efficiency of capitalism. Rather, free enterprise requires a moral defense rooted in the ideals of earned success, equality of opportunity, charity, and basic fairness. He builds this defense and demonstrates how it is central to understanding the major policy issues facing America today.
"The future of the free enterprise system has become a central issue in our national debate, and Brooks offers a practical manual for defending it. Both a moral manifesto and a prescription for concrete policy changes, The Road to Freedom
will help Americans in all walks of life translate the philosophy of free enterprise into action, to restore both our nation’s greatness and our own well-being in the process." (The Heritage Foundation)
This is a great speech about how to make the case for free enterprise.
This message has never been more important!
"Americans Have Always Believed that
All of Us Can Succeed"
America is in the middle of a war of words, with two very different visions competing for the future of our children.
The argument against freedom and against the free enterprise system is promoted vigorously in the news media, in the entertainment industry, and in our children’s classrooms.
And it is advocated by President Obama, most recently in his State of the Union Address.
Senator Marco Rubio spoke to Americans today. His remarks offer a very different perspective, and stand in powerful contrast to the Obama agenda.
Senator Rubio’s address lasts less than 5 minutes and is worth listening to, and discussing with our children. Never has it been more important for all people, young and old, to understand and defend the principles of liberty.
Senator Rubio's Remarks
State of the Union Address
Text of Senator Rubio's Remarks
Text of Senator Rubios Remarks:
"As you know, earlier this week, President Obama delivered his fourth annual address to Congress. It was an opportunity for the President to talk about his accomplishments over the last three years and to lay out his plans for the year ahead.
"And he missed on both counts.
"You didn't hear much talk about the success of his Administration—and that's because there isn't much.
"Yes, this President inherited a significant national debt, but over the last three years he's made it worse. Our national debt has grown by nearly 50 percent since he took over, and now, for the first time since World War II, our national debt is larger than our country's economy.
"Yes, this President inherited an economy where unemployment was too high, but over the last three years he's made it worse. Today our unemployment rate is higher than the day he took office. In fact, since he took over, it's been stuck over 8 percent every single month.
"This President didn't talk about his record for one simple reason; he doesn't want you to know about it. But you do know about it, because you feel the failure of his leadership every single day of your life.
"The bottom line is this President inherited a country with serious problems. He asked the Congress to give him the stimulus and Obamacare to fix it. The Democrats in Congress gave it to him. And not only did it not work, it made everything worse.
by Kevin D. Williamson October 5, 2011 National Review
I don’t know what Steve Jobs’s politics were, I don’t much care, and in any case they are beside the point.
The late Mr. Jobs stood for something considerably better than politics.
He stood for the model of the world that works.
The model that made this:
That old Motorola cinderblock would cost about $10,000 in 2011 dollars, and you couldn’t play Angry Birds on it or watch Fox News or trade a stock. Once you figure out why your cell phone gets better and cheaper every year but your public schools get more expensive and less effective, you can apply that model to answer a great many questions about public policy. Not all of them, but a great many.
Jobs was sometimes criticized for not being a philanthropist along the lines of Bill Gates. Take this article
, for example:
Last year the founder of the Stanford Social Innovation Review
called Apple one of “America’s Least Philanthropic Companies.” Jobs had terminated all of Apple’s long-standing corporate philanthropy programs within weeks after returning to Apple in 1997, citing the need to cut costs until profitability rebounded. But the programs have never been restored.
CNN, being CNN, misses the point. Mr. Jobs’s contribution to the world is Apple and its products, along with Pixar and his other enterprises, his 338 patented inventions — his work
— not some Steve Jobs Memorial Foundation for Giving Stuff to Poor People in Exotic Lands and Making Me Feel Good About Myself. Because he already did that: He gave them better computers, better telephones, better music players
In a lot of cases, he gave them better jobs, too. Did he do it because he was a nice guy, or because he was greedy, or because he was a maniacally single-minded competitor who got up every morning possessed by an unspeakable rage to strangle his rivals? The beauty of capitalism — the beauty of the iPhone world as opposed to the world of politics — is that that question does not matter one little bit.
Whatever drove Jobs, it drove him to create superior products, better stuff at better prices. Profits are not deductions
from the sum of the public good, but the real measure
of the social value a firm creates. Those who talk about the horror of putting profits over people
make no sense at all. The phrase is without intellectual content.
Perhaps you do not think that Apple, or Goldman Sachs, or a professional
sports enterprise . . . actually creates much social value; but markets are very democratic — everybody gets to decide for himself what he values. That is not the final answer to every question, because economic answers can only satisfy economic questions. But the range of questions requiring economic answers is very broad.
I was down at the Occupy Wall Street protest today, and never has the divide between the iPhone world and the politics world been so clear: I saw a bunch of people very well-served by their computers and telephones (very often Apple products) but undeniably shortchanged by our government-run cartel education system.
And the tragedy for them — and for us — is that they will spend their energy trying to expand the sphere of the ineffective, hidebound, rent-seeking, unproductive political world, giving the Barney Franks and Tom DeLays an even stronger whip hand over the Steve Jobses and Henry Fords. And they — and we — will be poorer for it.
And to the kids camped out down on Wall Street: Look at the phone in your hand. Look at the rat-infested subway. Visit the Apple Store
on Fifth Avenue, then visit a housing project in the South Bronx. Which world do you want to live in?
Marco Rubio Speech
Reagan Library -- August 23, 2011
We live at a time when it is urgent to revitalize Constitutional principles in America and restore government to its proper role.
Yesterday, Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) delivered a moving speech at the Ronald Reagan Memorial Library. In it he eloquently communicated some of the values that have made America great.
To read the full text of Senator Rubio’s remarks, click here: Speech at Reagan Library
Free enterprise has created prosperity and an incredible lifestyle for millions of average Americans. Most of us enjoy luxuries that only the rich and famous could afford just a few years ago.
President Obama has never owned or operated a real business. He and his advisors might benefit from a course on how wealth is created. The video below is a great place to start.
Many children are taught in public school that the rich get wealthy by taking more than their fair share. This video explains how wealth is really created, and how wealth creation benefits all of us. If you watch the video with your kids, you could discuss any ideas they might have for earning money. Summer is a good time to start a small business. RaisingCEOKids.com
is a great website to help you help your children become young entrepreneurs. Who knows what you and your kids might be able to accomplish this summer?