Billionaire Democrat Ted Leonsis wrote a posting titled “Class Warfare – Yuck!” on his blog yesterday, in which he implored the president, to whose campaign he donated the maximum amount: “Hit a reset button ASAP. Rethink how to talk to businesses and sell business leaders on your plan to make America great! Many of us want to be a part of the solution. We aren’t the problem.”
Today, Charles Schwab published an opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal, and again the title says it all: “Every Job Requires an Entrepreneur.” If there is to be an economic recovery, he says,
The leaders of both parties, Republicans and Democrats alike, must lend their voices to encourage and support private enterprise, both for what it can do to turn our economy around and for the spirit of opportunity it represents.
These two men are individually responsible for the creation of hundreds of thousands of jobs because of the innovations they brought to the internet (AOL) and to stock brokerage (Charles Schwab Corp.). And their businesses have done more than employ lots of people; they have lowered the cost of internet access and financial services for millions of Americans. These men have done immense good for “less fortunate Americans,” and Ted Leonsis feels insulted by corporate jet demagoguery,
I own 50 hours on NetJets for the rare occasion I do travel by private plane. Does Air Force One charter out? Stop making private planes an issue. This is a tiny issue for us to deal with for our country.
Trying to shackle investment and entrepreneurial activity does the unemployed no good (nor our national debt). And no rhetorical strategy could be more opposed to the Christian principle of solidarity than the vilifying of successful entrepreneurs — the effects of such a strategy on public morality should be immediately obvious.
The corporate jet talking point is meant to stir envy in the hearts of listeners — it’s a trifling proposal that packs maximum rhetorical punch — and government by envy will get you nowhere.