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Real Treason: The War Against Business
[July 29, 2002]

By S. M. Oliva

Last Friday, House Democrats and their Republican allies continued their war on wealth creation in America, all in the alleged name of “homeland security.” By a 318-110 vote, with only one Democrat in opposition, an amendment by Connecticut Rep. Rosa DeLauro to the Homeland Security bill passed, which provides that the Department of Homeland Security will not contract with “expatriate” corporations, those companies which do most of their business in the United States, but are incorporated abroad for tax purposes. The bill could affect more than $2 billion in federal contracts with U.S. companies in good standing, simply because they refuse to put the interests of Democratic lawmakers ahead of their shareholders and employees.

This amendment is designed to destroy wealth, period. It has nothing to do with protecting America’s “homeland”, as House Majority Leader Dick Armey argued in opposition. This is about Democratic lawmakers trying to capitalize on the recent corporate accounting scandals to seize as much private wealth and control over American industry as they can, before the people eventually wake up and attempt to reassert their right to engage in free commerce.

Rep. DeLauro stood on the floor of the House—once the stomping grounds of true patriots like James Madison and Henry Clay—and had the gall to call corporations like PriceWaterhouse and Tyco “traitors” because they dared to incorporate abroad. There’s one, and only one, reason these companies did that: to free themselves from just a small percent of the biased tax burden hoist upon businessmen by the Congress in the form of the tax code. This is not a case of companies shipping jobs abroad; the “traitors” Mrs. DeLauro attacks include hundreds of thousands of American workers, many of whom could be thrown out of work as a consequence of this amendment. In the Democrats’ and a significant number of Republicans' world, it’s better to be poor and living on welfare than wealthy and employed by a private business.

The argument for this amendment was that companies should pay their fair share of taxes. But that’s not what we’re talking about. The U.S. government annually steals trillions in private wealth, with only a fraction going to legitimate government functions, such as defense and the courts. More than 75% of the federal budget is simply a political slush fund for various interest groups and coalitions who obtain through legislative force what they could not gain morally in the free marketplace of capitalism. This is the system which businesses like Stanley Works could not accept, and that’s why they acted to reincorporate in “tax havens”.

Thankfully, there is an out. President Bush will have the authority under the amendment to waive its provisions if he finds doing so is in the interests of national security. Should he sign the Homeland Security as passed by the House, he should immediately waive the provision for all affected companies. The president can do so with a clear conscious, for it is in the interest of our nation to emphasize wealth creation and private employment over tax collection and political thievery.


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