Lord Help Us — Bosses Gone Berserk
The sky is falling! The end times are upon us! It’s all over for America! And it’s all because of you execrable voters.
This is the wretched wail of a few corporate chieftains who claim to be somewhere between flummoxed and furious that Barack Obama is back in the White House. With his diabolical Obamacare and tax-the-rich attacks on us wealthy job creators, they moan, this president is out to destroy American business. “There’s a tsunami coming,” cried one, so we must save ourselves.
How do these trembling titans of free enterprise intend to do that? By firing employees, thus sending a message to workers that voting for Democrats is bad for their health.
“Elections have consequences,” exclaimed a Las Vegas boss, after offing 22 workers the day after Obama was re-elected. Echoing this self-serving political ethic, the Georgia owner of an aviation outfit told C-SPAN that his fear of Obamacare made him fire enough workers to exempt his business from providing health care. “I tried to make sure that the people I had to lay off voted for Obama,” he noted, spewing spite.
Then there’s Papa John’s, the billion-dollar-a-year fast-food chain. John Schnatter, the present “papa” of Papa John’s, had warned this summer that he’d jack up the consumer price of the chain’s pizza if Obama won, because he wasn’t going to eat the cost of assuring health coverage for employees.
Post-election, however, Schnatter has decided not to slap his customers, but to slap Papa John’s workers, instead, by cutting their hours to part-time so he doesn’t have to pay for their coverage. “That’s what you do,” Schnatter snapped. “You pass on costs.”
Yeah, and what an exemplary way for the millionaire boss to boost productivity and loyalty (not to mention morale of those who do the actual work that makes customers want to buy Papa John’s pizza — or not).
Despite all of Schnatter’s qualifications to take top prize in the “Political Boss Man of the Year” contest, he really didn’t come close to our winner. Numero Uno for 2012, hands down, is Robert Murray, multimillionaire chief backer of the coal giant Murray Energy.
A diehard right-winger and Romney backer, this one-percenter required coal miners in his company to be stage props for Romney at an August rally he sponsored, and he also pressured his salaried employees to donate money to the Republican’s run for the White House.
Alas, though, Murray’s man lost, and the coal baron is not taking it at all well. In fact, he’s taking it out on some of those very employees he coerced into Mitt’s campaign — and he says it’s all your fault, you Great Unwashed who voted for the radical Socialist Democrat.
First, the workers. Only hours after the election, Murray announced the firing of more than 160 of them at his various subsidiaries around the country, blaming disastrous policies he claims Obama will now enact in order to bring about the “total destruction of the coal industry by 2030.” Peering into his politically warped crystal ball, the corporate soothsayer said he will be “forced” to fire more employees in coming months.
Why? Bob explained it all in — believe it or not — a post-election prayer that he delivered to staffers at corporate headquarters.
“Dear Lord,” he lamented, “the takers outvoted the producers.” (Guess which group he puts himself in. But I digress.) “The American people have made their choice … away from capitalism,” he mourned. “We are a country in favor of redistribution, national weakness and reduced standard of living.” Thus, pleaded the sanctimonious boss, “Lord, please forgive me … for the decisions that we are now forced to make.”
So, see, it wasn’t Bob who fired those people. It was YOU, you Obama supporters — or, and Murray sneeringly calls you, the “receivers” of government giveaways who elected that communistical destroyer of enterprise.
Dear Lord, indeed! Please save us from the pathetic pieties of such messianic political bosses.
To find out more about Jim Hightower, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate webpage at www.creators.com.
Photo credit: AP/Paul Fraughton, File