President Obama on free markets

President Obama made some comments in his weekly address that are rather troubling.  In speaking about his upcoming address to the US Chamber of Commerce, he said:

Supporting businesses with this kind of 21st century infrastructure and cutting-edge innovation is our responsibility.  But businesses have a responsibility, too.  If we make America the best place to do business, businesses should make their mark in America.  They should set up shop here, and hire our workers, and pay decent wages, and invest in the future of this nation.  That’s their obligation.

Obligation? Excuse me, Mr. President, but I beg to differ.  No one, including business has an obligation to do anything.  That is what freedom, and free markets are all about.

There is a difference between doing the right thing and being forced to do the right thing.  If a business builds American infrastructure and creates jobs for Americans, that is commendable.  But they are under no obligation to do so.  When they are, that is just one more reason for them to seek to do business elsewhere.

President Obama has tried to convince us that he is pro-business; that he is trying to make America the best place to do business.  But actions speak louder than words, and today is no different. The President’s new budget includes proposals for broader unemployment taxes.  While that may help to take some weight off of states that are depleting their resources, this is a direct cost to businesses.

Adding to an employer’s financial burden of hiring additional employees does nothing to improve the job situation.  In fact, it will hinder job growth.