Harry Queries

Samuel R. Lewis Contributor

Is it me, or do the outbursts of Senator Harry Reid increasingly sound like those of Homer Simpson, minus the “D’oh!”? Campaigning in Nevada last Tuesday, Harry said “I don’t know how anyone of Hispanic heritage could be a Republican, okay. Do I need to say more?”

If we answered “Please, no, Harry!” would it matter?

I don’t know whether Republican Hispanics are really that inscrutable to Senator Reid, but his formulation is a convenient way to express a number of personal political mysteries I’m dubbing — in a tribute to Nevada’s shoot-from-the-lip senator — “Harry Queries”:

I don’t know how any businessman could vote for any candidate who supports the Obama Administration. Think of socialism as the new feudalism, and you’ll understand that Obama and friends are literally going medieval on private enterprise. If you’re in the healthcare or financial industries (or you work for GM), there’s a new government boss in your overhead. If you’re in other businesses, say, oil and gas or telecommunications, you’re probably treading water waiting to see whether you become the Administration’s next target for “reform,” or how much additional cost the government will impose on your operations via more taxes, regulations, or new mandates. Never in American history has an Administration so ignorant about how business works been so unabashedly arrogant in trying to direct it. Obama, Reid, and Pelosi are like The Three Stooges playing The Three Musketeers, but not for laughs.

I don’t know how any non-government working guy or gal could vote for a Democrat. The costs that Democrats so cavalierly impose on your employer necessarily have repercussions, none of which are good for you. Either your employer passes on the costs to your customers, which makes your product or service less competitive in the marketplace, or your employer must reduce other costs. You’re a cost. So, even if you get to keep your job, you won’t get a pay raise and your salary and benefits may be reduced. Meanwhile, your U.S. customers are readjusting their requirements (i.e., purchasing less) as the Democrats impose additional costs on them. So, why wouldn’t you do something to stop the Democrat assault on business? Why would you gamble with your job by voting for a Democrat?

I don’t know why anyone who’s unemployed and looking for work could vote for a Democrat. See above. Since the Democrats took over Congress in January 2007, unemployment has more than doubled.

I don’t know how a parent could vote for a Democrat. Democrats have created a mountain of debt that George Mallory couldn’t scale. U.S. government debt has jumped 52 percent since the Democrats took over Congress in 2007 and is increasing by tens of billions of dollars every week. Meanwhile, President Obama signs multi-billion dollar spending bills faster than Michelle signs autographs in Spain. Democrats’ reckless spending will burden our children, our grandchildren, and our great-grandchildren for decades. If you’re a parent and you wish the best for your kids, why would you vote for Democrat politicians who are striving mightily to tank our economy, debase our currency, and lower the standard of living for generations to come?

I don’t know how any taxpayer could vote for a Democrat. Raising taxes is the Democrats’ solution to nearly every problem. It’s like a teenager and ketchup. Cheese fries? Drown ’em in ketchup. Prime rib? Ditto. Can’t pay for socialized healthcare? Raise taxes. Need funding to bailout GM or a Wall Street investment bank? Raise taxes. Country is in the middle of a recession? Raise taxes. (Just do it in January — after the election.)

I don’t know how any investor could vote for a Democrat.  And I’m not talking just about Wall Street financiers. If you own stock in an IRA account or through your employer’s 401(k) plan, you’re an investor. If you think that the companies you’ve invested in can absorb more taxes, regulation, and compliance costs without consequence, you need to get to rehab NOW and try and save your few remaining viable brain cells. The stock market is negative year-to-date for a reason. If you permit the Democrats in control of the presidency and both houses of Congress to continue pouring sand in the gears of American private enterprise — the engine of America’s economic success — the capitalist vehicle (and your investment in it) will be less robust than a Yugo at a demolition derby. 

I don’t know how any soldier or sailor could vote for a Democrat. Our Democrat-controlled government is sending military personnel into life-threatening situations in Afghanistan, and the Democrat commander-in-chief has never provided a succinct, accomplishable mission to justify their sacrifice. “Winning hearts and minds” is not a mission; it’s a political bumper sticker intended to paper over the fact that the Administration doesn’t have a clue what to do or what it can reasonably and realistically accomplish.

I don’t know how any freedom-loving American could vote for a Democrat. The current Democrat crew is hell-bent — and that is the appropriate term — on driving America over the socialist cliff. (Not sure what a socialist is? Read this). Historically, socialism has been the hangman’s noose for freedom — and many necks have been sacrificed in the pursuit of socialist paradise. Socialist dictators on the right and the left killed more people in the twentieth century than were murdered by governments in all the preceding millennia. Can’t happen here in America? Well, even “nice” socialists impoverish their nations – and that is happening here. Economically, socialism is antithetical to capitalism and sucks the energy out of free enterprise, which has been so instrumental in generating American prosperity. There are intelligent folks on both sides of the political fence, but it’s the Democrats who demonstrate an affinity for socialist economics, and that’s as dumb as, well, Homer Simpson.

Which brings us back to the inspiration for Harry Queries: I don’t know how anyone other than a Homer Simpson could vote for someone as clueless as Harry Reid. 

Samuel R. Lewis is an assistant general counsel for a global telecommunications company.  He writes commentary on current, past, and future events based on his diverse experiences as a former U.S. Army officer, parent, and participant in some of the most tumultuous events of the past 20 years in the business world.