I didn’t make it to the One Nation Working Together rally, but Nick Gillespie of Reason TV did (hat tip Hot Air).
You’ll see a certain fatigue if you look at Gillespie’s excellent video: tired ideas, tired people. I particularly liked the nasty comment about New Jersey Governor Chris being fat. I suspect what they really hate about Christie is that he wants to slim down government.
The spots I saw of the rally seemed to be all about wanting government to do more and more. Why not cut to the chase and just say: Citoyens! We want more of your money. What we like to call “government money” is really revenue that comes from you and me. It used to be our money. We are selfish if we want to keep it and spend it as we like.
So, in a nutshell, it was a rally for higher taxes.
The rally was billed as being a rally for jobs. That sounds better than a rally for higher taxes, doesn’t it.
But government and higher taxes do not create jobs. Robert Samuelson makes this point today in his column in the Washington Post. Who creates jobs? Samuelson answers:
In any given year, employment may reflect the ups and downs of the business cycle. But over longer periods, almost all job growth comes from new businesses. The reason: high failure rates among existing firms. Even successful firms succumb to threats: new competition, products or technologies; mature markets; family feuds and the deaths of founders; shifting consumer tastes; poor management and unprofitability. A company founded today has an 80 percent chance of disappearing over the next quarter-century, report Dane Stangler and Paul Kedrosky of the Kauffman Foundation. …
The debate over whether small or big firms create more jobs is misleading. The real distinction is between new and old.
Unfortunately, the U.S. is setting up an environment that makes it difficult for news businesses to launch. They are hemmed in with health care insurance regulations that make it difficult, if not impossible, to take on people. A budding entrepreneur today would have no idea of what his tax bill is going to be. And we have a mindset that praises people for by passing business in favor of non-productive jobs. Do read the Samuelson column. (Also see Mortimer Zuckerman’s “The American Jobs Creating Machine is Clanging to a Halt.”)
I have one more observation about the One Nation rally. As this story in the Daily Caller makes clear, they left behind a lot of trash. I have a theory: They are so committed to the idea that the government should take care of them that they don’t even pick up their trash.