Is what’s good for business really what’s good for the nation? Economy could put Romney in the White House

Even though the United States is mired in economic malaise and tremendous debt I am not at all sold on the idea that what we need is a businessman as president.

A nation is not really a business. It is true that the thinking of a businessman could help in budgeting, that is about where it stops.

To state an obvious fact, not everyone runs a business. In fact, the majority of us don’t.  And the president is supposed to represent the interests of all people.

It is true that we all depend upon the money generated by business,  so in that regard certainly it would be nice for the president to have a keen understanding of business.

But the aim of most businesses is to make as much profit as possible, not really to ensure that everyone has a job or a piece of the action or health care (even though most businesses of any size offer some health benefits to employees), or health and safety protections.

And should the president decide whether to go to war or commit troops to action (war seems hard to define these days) based on business considerations? There is some thought and evidence that indeed that is how we decide to go to war — but as Nixon  would have said: “but that would be wrong”.

I would agree, though, that a president should not be seen or be an enemy of business.

President Barack Obama seems interested in business, but I think he may be a little too tied into the idea that so-called “green industry” is the way to boost our industrial output and economic growth. I really don’t understand. My idea is that green industry mainly involves finding more energy-efficient and environmentally friendly ways of doing things. That is wonderful and quite important as far as it goes. But it sounds more like a support effort than straight out production. It seems to me that the problem in this nation is that long ago we fell for the notion that we should abandon dirty industry in favor of clean (in the environmental sense) efforts, such as the financial service industry. We see where that has gotten us — we let that run amok because making money can never be criticized.

Mitt Romney is currently the putative front runner among Republican candidates (according to the pundits) for the presidency.

He has a track record in the world of businesses for making money and a reputation for taking control of and streamlining businesses and seeing thousands of people laid off and shipping jobs overseas where labor is cheaper in the process — good for business, not so good for people.

On the other hand, Romney seems to be fairly moderate in political ideology and not afraid to implement liberal or new ideas, such as his own health care plan for the state of Massachusetts. That has gotten him into hot water in the modern Republican Party in which you can only think in the most narrow-minded of ways. Even so, he seems to be the front runner for now, at least according to the pundits.

Romney does not mind changing views on issues at a moment’s notice when he sees the wind blowing the other way. It is good to have someone who can bend, especially if he sees new information or research or just takes a fresh look at things. But it is also nice to think that when someone takes a position on something he (or she) is sincere.

Romney is clever on the health care thing as he chastises Obama for Obamacare. Even though his program in his home state of Massachusetts was essentially the model for Obamacare — so much so that some of his Republican or Tea Party detractors are calling it “Obamneycare” —  he says his plan was just for states, meaning conceivably people in any one state could choose their own idea of a health care system. That sounds kind of weak, really. For one thing, have you noticed that a large percentage of Americans move from state to state on a frequent basis? And if the program was good for Massachusetts and Romney designed it, why is it not good for everyone?

Other candidates will emerge probably (I know there are already many of them, but really what do we know about them?).

Michelle Bachman is making a splash (according to the punditry). She has been fairly well characterized heretofore in the mainstream media as a little bizarre, outlandish, or just a ditz. I do not know enough of her myself.

Sarah Palin, yes, she is a ditz (and not a declared candidate — she‘s basically showbiz for now).

Both Bachman and Palin would probably be described as good looking. Romney would too.

I guess Obama too — Ron Paul, not so much.

But does good looks make a good president?

Okay, I was wrong four years ago when I predicted Romney would be the winning GOP presidential candidate. And truth be told, I have never found anything to like about him. But I think he has that stylized American presidential look. And I guess he speaks well.

If he can placate the extremists in the GOP (good luck) and keep enough to the center, and , biggest of all, if Obama cannot work a miracle with the economy and get everyone back to work, Romney could indeed win in 2012.


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