Bad for business

Published March 14, 2024

By Cash Michaels

If what I’ve been reading since the Super Tuesday primaries is accurate, North Carolina establishment Republicans have a serious problem on their hands.

A problem that’s very bad for them, for us, and for business.

Now, I’ll admit, I have my differences with the business community at times. Small businesses are cool, but some of these large corporations can get just too damn greedy for their own good. The only sides Big Corps are usually on are either side of a dollar bill. Whatever turns more profits, whatever the costs, or whoever it costs, is usually their mantra.

Yes, I want more prosperity for our state, and what it brings for every citizen - more jobs, more opportunities, a greater climate for wealth creation. I just want all of that without polluting people’s water or air, raising prices outlandishly, and not sucking communities dry of vital resources with no sense of responsibility.

And I’m fully aware of why Republicans and the business community have always been such bosom buddies, too. The GOP traditionally promises to keep corporate and upper-income tax rates low, in return for big fat campaign contributions from corporate PACs.

No wonder the golf course is the most popular place for business deals and political glad-handing over tax breaks. 

But try growing stronger North Carolina businesses, let alone attracting more top notch industries to the state, when our top elected leadership are bonehead knuckle-draggers who keep running their mouths about LGBTQ people being “filth” and women not being fit for leadership, or public schools being nothing more than liberal “socialism centers”, or how certain people shouldn’t be allowed to use public restrooms because of who they are.

Sworn elected officials with such divisive ideas that spew from their mouths like a bad case of diarrhea aren’t exactly good for business. The whole HB2 “bathroom bill” fiasco back in 2016  proved that, when North Carolina lost hundreds of millions of dollars in a national boycott because the amateur Einsteins who ran our Republican-led NC General Assembly thought they were doing the people’s business.

They weren’t, and it took us a while to climb out from under that embarrassing boulder of bigotry.

Now, given what happened in the Republican primaries March 5th, where several MAGA candidates dropkicked a number of establishment Republican candidates, the most shocking being what happened in the GOP primary between incumbent Superintendent of Public Instruction Catherine Truitt and MAGA home schooler/election denier Michele Marrow, there’s concern among the business class. 

The NC Chamber of Commerce, which usually backs Republicans with a willing hand and open wallet, is now deeply concerned that come November, if Mark Robinson is elected governor, Dan Bishop elected state attorney general, and Michele Marrow oversees the state’s public school systems, North Carolina’s business climate will be anything but friendly.

“Tuesday’s primary election results were a startling warning of the looming threats to North Carolina’s business climate,” the Chamber wrote in a newsletter to its membership after the primaries. “While we celebrate the victories of Chamber-backed candidates, many of the races we were watching turned for candidates that do not share our vision for North Carolina.”

Please underline the part “…primary election results were a startling warning of the looming threats…” in your reread.

But here’s the Chamber line that certainly sounded the alarm for the business establishment, “…in Republican races, populist candidates enjoyed great success.” 

In case no one has ever told you, any kind of populism is bad for business…unless you’re manufacturing and selling cardboard signs, magic markers and wooden sticks.

And for the rest of us, Republican populism (aka MAGA) is bad for democracy. 

Robinson’s past derogatory remarks alone, now being broadcast all over the world as his contest against Democrat Josh Stein for governor becomes a national center of attention, are enough to scare businesses away from the state.

Bishop was the character, when he served in the NC House, who sponsored the infamous so-called “bathroom bill.” Now this clown wants to enforce laws?

And Morrow, a MAGA-nobody infamous for actually encouraging people not to send their children to public schools, and taking pride in attending the infamous January 6th U.S. Capitol insurrection (though she insists she did not breach the Capitol building with some of her MAGA buddies) would be responsible for making sure that North Carolina public school systems are both attractive and capable enough for incoming industries to feel that their employees will have good schools to send their children too.

Yeah, right! I can see the folks over at Apple Computer moving to NC, doubling up on their high blood pressure medicine if this lineup is elected to office next November.

The fact of the matter is Sen. Barry Goldwater (AZ), 1964 Republican presidential candidate, was dead wrong when he said, “Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice, and moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue.”

Given that Robinson, Bishop and Morrow clearly come from the Barry Goldwater School of Republican Extremism, the hope here is that North Carolina’s business community will join moderate Democrats, Republicans and independents in delivering a definitive “Hell no!” at the ballot box to these “toxic three” come next November.

Hey, say what you want, Democrats aren’t as bad for business as crazy MAGA Republicans. Folks complain that Dems are always raising taxes, particularly on the rich and corporate sector, but those folks had to realize that one day, the tax break gravy train was going to be over and they would have to pay their fair share.

It’s either that, or be economically and culturally held hostage by certified MAGA nuts who really have  no understanding of how important it is to keep the trains running on time in order for good growth in the state to continue.

Glad to have you join our crusade, business community! Now if you would be so kind as to not give one more red nickel to these MAGA terrorists for their campaigns, we might be able to get something good going here.

‘Cause Lord knows, these crazy MAGA folks are bad for business!