With the conventions going on, both political parties have seized upon the comments by President Obama concerning who is responsible for building up the economy and businesses. The GOP has responded with "We Built This" and has seen a successful campaign with this slogan and with this issue. The Democrats have responded in kind with "We Make It Possible."So which claim is correct and which will resonate the most with voters in November?
The "We Make It Possible" argument makes sense on the surface, but is ultimately flawed. The argument is that government provides roads, education, and other services that are vital to businesses to survive. And this is true and valid. However, where did the government get the money to build and provide? That money has come from the people. The government doesn't just give away roads and education. Those services are provided by tax dollars paid by the citizens. These taxes may come in the form of income, property, capital gains, and many other taxes. However, all revenue for the government comes from taxes on the people. So, while the government paid the checks for the projects, we as citizens, put money in the account for the government to spend.
The GOP argues "We Built This." This argument is much more valid. Small business owners across the country have invested their own time and money and they are solely responsible for the success and failure of their business. The government won't end if a small business fails, but the owner will have to face the consequences. The government provides infrastructure for many businesses to succeed. However, these same small business owners and their customers are the ones paying taxes that allow the government to provide that infrastructure.
So, the people not only make it possible, they also built it. To give credit to a government is taking the power away from the people who supply and trust the government with their funds.