Imagine you are walking down the street and you see a restaurant going out of business.
The proprietor is at the front door, looking inside the space that was once his company. You wind up engaged in a conversation. He tells you he has been forced to close up because, “Well, I’m not very good at running a business.
Everything I touch turns to junk.”
You are about to wish him well and walk on when he makes you an offer:
“If you like, I can open a restaurant for you. Just give me a million dollars and I’ll give it a whirl.”
Surprised, even shocked, you say:
“But you said you’re not very good at running a business. Won’t handing you a million, respectfully, be like pouring a million down the drain?”
To which he replies, “Of course. But I will be able to give five people jobs for the six months or so until the million holds out.”
If you think this anecdote is fiction, you have been living in a bubble. It is precisely the conversation America’s so called car markers are having with America’s so-called government leaders. Including our President-elect.
A clan of frauds thinks we are a nation of fools. And the clique of leaders may validate this disgusting assumption. Or embarrassing fact.
It is plausible that the golf club junkies running Detroit should get financial aid-our economy is too fragile to take the hit of an auto implosion-but only if their resignation is part of the package. They must leave. They must hide their heads in shame. They must never run a lemonade stand.
In all of life, we must invest our money, our time, our hopes, our dreams in the form of doers. Not the hangers-on who take orders, collect a check, go home for the 6 o’ clock news, live for the weekend. They are the civil servants, by mind if not title, and God bless them and I wish them well, but I don’t want them running anything.
There is such a thing as “American exceptionalism.” And to maintain it, we need driven, street smart capitalists who make the wheel turn. Let the Rick Wagoners of the world work for the post office or some other government
agency that pays people for breathing. But if we are going to give Detroit a vault of money, we must insist that an Icahn or a Trump or some other egotist who gets things done is the guardian of the dough and of our national destiny and once the shop is in order, they can pick successors.
In the meantime, let’s be a nation of geniuses dealing with a cabal of frauds. And in our personal and business lives, let’s recognize that we learn nothing and experience zero growth from those who are in the all too common business
of paying it safe!