Comments on: The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is not the same thing as American business Mon, 13 Oct 2014 11:49:24 +0000 hourly 1 By: randymiller Sat, 30 Oct 2010 21:41:46 +0000 First of all, corporations don’t decide anything, they don’t speak. THE people who manage them do. If the CEO, and top management of a corporation decide to fund one political view or another, they are making that decision based on their personal bias. So, the average stockholder is funding the CEO’s personal political views.

A CEO should not have the right to use corporate money to fund his own political agenda. A Wall Street banker can use corporate money to weaken financial regulation, loot the company for his own personal gain, and the stockholder is left to pay the bill for the lobbying, and a falling share price.

IN the middle of this decade, the management of big financials were looting the companies, manipulating profit and loss statements to give themselves huge compensation packages. When the house of cards came apart, the stockholders were left with almost nothing, but the guys at the top still kept their ill gotten gains.

One other point. We need to quit lumping big financials with the rest of corporate America. There are good corporations out there in manufacturing, energy, agriculture, etc, who are doing things that make Americans lives better. Do not paint them with the same brush as the people who run the big financials on Wall Street.

By: stat_arb Thu, 28 Oct 2010 11:10:01 +0000 Yeah … when I owned a small business I never once went to a chamber of commerce meeting. I saw it as a waste of time — something for people who are interested in empty networking over either actually working or relaxing with friends & family.

No surprise that only d***heads’ interests are included.

By: pparris9 Wed, 27 Oct 2010 22:10:13 +0000 OK,

3 Local chambers say no. 3,497 to go.

I guess most say yes.

By: hsvkitty Wed, 27 Oct 2010 14:20:49 +0000 Corruption and greed is a great fuel source for more of the same. I wonder what the charter reads and how they remain buy-able/manipulable as well as tax exempt? If you allow unbridled influencing, which was opened again in January, you return to the mafioso style system.

In this case though, the influencing originates from sources which remain anonymous and protected by the law. That’s just wrong … If I were on the board of a charter member I would be speaking up as well.

Maybe the problem in America is everyone forgets they have a voice and free speech and ability to understand what makes sense when you vote. (buy into the likely winners makes sense? in what way?)

I would be having their tax free status reviewed if I had the power to do so and do an audit, knowing they were using that status and cash received to influence with such large sums of money. But then any influencing/lobbying seems to be ok with your society, even as it become more corrupt, now so no one even needs brown envelopes any more … timestopics/organizations/f/federal_elec tion_commission/index.html?inline=nyt-or g

I like this statement

“The U.S. Chamber would have small businesses believe that protecting the rights of bank and non-bank lenders to deceive, manipulate and bet against small businesses is good for the economy and good for our future – all evidence to the contrary.”

By: mattmc Wed, 27 Oct 2010 04:04:39 +0000 Well, I think the key here is that the Chamber is capitalist and market oriented. To say that the Republicans have been stronger on those issues over the past 10 years is pretty questionable, as both parties have been roundly awful. However, in this cycle, the Republicans are at least campaigning against socialist/centrally planned/restribution focused policies. To be sure, the Republican party comes with heavy, ugly, religious conservative baggage- and plenty of loons running for office this time around. However, it wouldn’t really make sense to get behind the Democrats either and you might as well buy into the likely winners.

By: mwbugg Wed, 27 Oct 2010 01:07:39 +0000 Does anybody know a major financial firm that is not a member of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce? I’ve got money at Schwab and they have an exec VP that’s on the Chamber’s Board. I’m a Democrat and I’d like to move my money to somebody who is apolitical rather than actively working against my views.

By: MedicinalScotch Tue, 26 Oct 2010 20:43:10 +0000 Curmudgeon,
The irony is that small businesses, however well- or ill-suited to their industry, are seen as a sacrosanct object of Americana. Just as the Jeffersonians once viewed yeoman farmers as the highest form of economic organization and work, small businesses are spoken of in hushed and reverential tones. It’s to the great advantage of the US Chamber of Commerce that they wrap themselves in that mantle while taking no prisoners in the pursuit of their largest members’ interests.

By: TFF Tue, 26 Oct 2010 20:07:44 +0000 DanHess, there are several good reasons to oppose vouchers.

(1) Schools (especially large public schools) come with a substantial “fixed cost”. If a third of the students leave for charter schools, or take vouchers to attend private schools, then they take a third of the money with them. The remaining two thirds of the money is insufficient to provide “level services” for the remaining two thirds of the students. Your facilities cost remains unchanged (unless you find a new tenant for the unoccupied space). The teachers who get laid off (or never hired) are lower on the salary scale than those who remain. And you need a certain number of basic administrative and guidance staff regardless of the school population. Downsizing is hard.

(2) The concept of vouchers originated in the South at the time of desegregation and still bears racist links in the minds of some people.

(3) Unions oppose anything that would weaken their franchise. Whether or not it improves the situation for their membership (effective and responsive schools promise greater job satisfaction for teachers) is irrelevant. All organizations tend to be self-perpetuating.

(4) Voters oppose anything that costs more money. A voucher system would likely increase costs (see #1) for a while, though it might ultimately lead to a more effective and more efficient system.

By: Gotthardbahn Tue, 26 Oct 2010 19:53:27 +0000 BarbaraKiviat: Whatever. You clearly haven’t grasped – or answered – my point. Taking three regional CoCs and one gender-based CoC differing with the US CoC and somehow concluding, on the basis of this tiny sample, that the US CoC doesn’t speak for everybody and that, in your own words:

‘And in the case of the U.S. Chamber, it seems to be less true with each passing day.’

is kinda jumping to a conclusion, don’t you think? Possibly a conclusion you already had before writing this piece?

By: Curmudgeon Tue, 26 Oct 2010 19:52:26 +0000 Coming from the tech world, I never hear mention of the Chamber of Commerce. Especially at the local level, I always thought it was an anachronism of old-fashioned small businesses trying to hold onto largely obsolete business models. It sounds harsh, but perhaps both the Chamber and labor unions are struggling to figure out their roles today and in the future.