By Ugo Gussalli Beretta
The Washington Times, Tuesday, February 4, 2014
“My family has operated our business from the same small town in northern Italy for 500 years. This means that when we make a commitment to a local community, our hope is to do so for decades, if not centuries, to come.
“We apply this same philosophy to all of our factories and locations throughout the world. Such a commitment is not a one-way street, though.
“In return for our investment in jobs, facilities and assistance to the local economy, we ask for respect and a supportive business climate.
“We deserve such respect. We make the standard sidearm for the U.S. armed forces. We also make firearms that police and consumers use to save their lives and the lives of others.
“We also make sporting firearms that are enjoyed by tens of millions of people worldwide, from Olympic shooters to weekend hunters.
"Our business has grown in recent years, and because of that, we needed to expand production in our U.S facility, located in Accokeek, just outside of Washington, D.C., in the Maryland suburbs.
“Unfortunately, as we were planning that expansion, Maryland’s governor and legislature voted in favor of new regulations that unfairly attack products we make and that our customers want.
“These regulations also demean our law-abiding customers, who must now be fingerprinted like criminals before they can be allowed to purchase one of our products.
“We have seen these types of legislative proposals in Maryland before, and they never seem to reduce crime. Maybe this is because the proponents of such legislation blame the product instead of human misconduct.
“But in any event, because of these new restrictions and the pattern of harassment aimed at lawful firearm owners we have seen in Maryland over the decades, we decided to expand our facilities in a state that shows more respect for citizens who exercise their Second Amendment rights.
“We chose Tennessee for our new facility expansion. Our plans for that location are extensive and long-lasting.
“We chose Tennessee because the governor and legislators in that state understand what it means to support businesses (such as through job recruitment and training programs) that improve employment in the state without treating companies as a necessary evil.
"We chose Tennessee also because the vast majority of its residents and their elected officials have shown that they respect and honor the American tradition of personal freedoms, including the right to bear arms.”
Ugo Gussalli Beretta is CEO and president of Beretta Holding S.p.A.
FROM THE WALL STREET JOURNAL / REVIEW & OUTLOOK
Feb. 4, 2014 7:08 p.m. ET
Congress's budget office says ObamaCare will increase unemployment.
There are 7.8 million Americans working part-time who want full-time work, including a fry cook whose restaurant cut his hours to avoid Affordable Care Act mandates and confronted President Obama in an online Google GOOG +0.09% Q&A last week: "We can't survive. It's not a living." Mr. Obama changed the subject to raising the minimum wage. But he can't dodge reality forever as the evidence piles up that ObamaCare is harming the labor market.
On Tuesday no less than the Congressional Budget Office reported that the health law is causing Americans to work less or not at all, in a remarkable intellectual turnabout for the budget shop that Democrats cited repeatedly when selling ObamaCare. Now CBO—full of liberal-leaning economists—says the economy will lose the equivalent of two million full-time workers by 2017 and 2.5 million over the next decade, a threefold increase over its prior estimate.
CBO's analysis is rooted in ObamaCare's complex design that includes new subsidies, taxes and mandates. For low-wage, lower-skilled or discouraged workers in particular, ObamaCare offers incentives that can force them to trade jobs for entitlement benefits.
CBO's conclusion is that ObamaCare will encourage people to supply less labor by deciding not to take a job or by working fewer hours. The law's insurance subsidies are gradually taken away as income rises, "creating an implicit tax on additional earnings," the CBO observes. These effective marginal tax rates reduce the rewards for work—whether it be overtime, accepting a promotion, or training in the hope of higher future earnings. CBO doesn't note, though we will, that simply extending "free" coverage skews job search decisions by offering an in-kind bonus for unemployment.
CBO's job-loss prediction is all the more remarkable because it doesn't include the impact of ObamaCare's employer mandate, which requires businesses with 50 or more full-time employees to offer insurance or pay a $2,000 penalty for each worker beyond 30 employees. CBO more or less punts on the issue because the White House delayed the mandate for a year and the changes would be hard to model. But this means CBO is probably still underestimating job losses because common sense says that labor mandates raise hiring costs and induce businesses to hire less, or pay lower wages, or slash hours, or all three.
Too bad this reality isn't permeating the liberal force field of thinking only positive thoughts. "Claims that the Affordable Care Act hurts jobs are simply belied by the facts in the CBO report," the White House declared Tuesday. By "facts," the White House seems to mean that the report is positive because "individuals will be empowered to make choices about their own lives and livelihoods" and "have the opportunity to pursue their dreams." There you have it: the new American dream of not working.
All of this is one more contradiction of the arguments that were used to sell ObamaCare. The law would reduce health-care costs and shrink the deficit, you could keep your health plan and your doctor, and businesses could hire more workers and be more competitive. All of this is turning out to be false, and now we learn that the law is a job destroyer that is removing rungs from the ladder of upward economic mobility.
"Bitter Jim" shared this link to Victor Davis Hanson's excellent piece:
Title: A Beat-up, Exhausted, and Terrified Republican Establishment
Thanks, "Bitter Jim"!