Quantcast
Opinion

John Florez: Corporate or public interest, which is it?

Comments

Return To Article
  • Nunn24 Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 16, 2014 2:03 a.m.

    "It may be the reason his administration seems to put corporate interest above the general public's interest."

    Thank you for drawing attention to Utah business interests' pro-illegal immigration, immigration law anti-enforcement, pro-cheap labor agenda -- which has lifted only a few businessmen's lavish houseboats and speedboats atop the pleasant, blue waters of Lake Powell, while everyone else's toy bathtub boats have been sinking.

    True compassion takes into account the numerous American families in Utah who do suffer financially (unemployment, lower wages, foreclosure) and in every other way as a direct result of Herbert's pro-business, anti-society, illegal-alien sanctuary-state affirmation policy, as well manifest by his ardent defense of Utah's pro-cheap labor, immigration law anti-enforcement bill, 2011 Utah House Bill 116.

  • high school fan Huntington, UT
    Aug. 16, 2014 6:51 a.m.

    The author is mad that it is not his opinion but that of someone else that is being adhered to. The state seems to believe if everybody has a job then things will be well, I share that belief. Does it mean that all will be the same , no it doesn't but it does mean all should have an opportunity.
    Mr Florez says just over a hundred thousand out of over three million is without health coverage, which is around three percent. This the same as the states unemployment rate which is considered nearly full employment. The prober with taking federal money is that it eventually goes away and then the state has to fund it.
    No system is perfect, but here in Utah we have things pretty good.

  • one old man Ogden, UT
    Aug. 16, 2014 8:26 a.m.

    Mr. Florez usually offers a refreshing breath of fresh air in an otherwise stultifying atmosphere in Utah.

    Thank you, Sir, for pointing out some truths to readers of DN.

    I hope at least some will be paying attention.

  • Karen R. Houston, TX
    Aug. 16, 2014 8:41 a.m.

    IMO, the formula for approaching the social and economic health of a given population should be similar to that used by a lot of coaches: Those players with the greatest gifts need the least resources because they already have so much at their disposal. They're likely going to succeed regardless.

    What will give them more opportunities to shine, though, is strengthening the rest of the team. So the bulk of the time and resources should go to addressing the weaker participants. The mantra I heard as a kid was, "The team is only as strong as its weakest player."

    "Trickle down" actually works against the interests of the rich/powerful over the long-term. As we now see. Plus it's patronizing as all get out. Let's get back to basic engineering: First a sound foundation.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    Aug. 16, 2014 9:16 a.m.

    Mr. Florez is wrong on every point. Tax money pays for all "welfare" programs. Tax money comes from working people. Utah has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the nation. When government encourages business to locate in Utah, Utahns are employed. Employed Utahns take care of their own needs, reducing the need for State "welfare". Employed Utahns buy their own insurance, reducing the need for State Medicaid. Employed Utahns pay for everything that the State buys or "gives".

    Without employment, there would be no tax revenue. Without tax revenue, there would be no "welfare" programs.

    When liberal-minded people start to realize that tax revenues must come before there can be any "welfare" expenditures, they will stop demanding that government turn away businesses. They will start to see who the "goose" is that lays the "golden eggs".

    We should understand that principle from common experience. No matter how "caring" we may be, without excess funds, we cannot help others. We need jobs to be "caring", otherwise we are expecting others to "care" for us.

  • anti-liar Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 16, 2014 9:54 a.m.

    Mike Richards

    "When government encourages business to locate in Utah, Utahns are employed. Employed Utahns take care of their own needs, reducing the need for State 'welfare.'"

    But mere employment per se isn't everything. It doesn't mean much when a full-time worker is only earning poverty wages -- which is what most new jobs in Utah pay. Then that worker does need welfare -- despite his full-time labor.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    Aug. 16, 2014 9:59 a.m.

    Mr. Florez, another home run! Thank you so much for your refreshing take on things. You bring so much sanity into an otherwise crazy state politically. God Bless!

    @ Mike

    Mr. Richards, why are you only against the poor receiving government aid? Did you even read Mr. Florez's article? Where's your concern with the government aid that businesses are getting? Why aren't your protesting the handouts code named, "incentives" that our government gives to businesses? Aren't these entitlements?

    Why are you for our state receiving federal money for highways yet be against receiving federal money for health care?

    There's no difference!

    Contrary to what you may think, what's good for business is not always what's good for people.

  • The Educator South Jordan , UT
    Aug. 16, 2014 10:11 a.m.

    @ Michael Richards

    What's the difference between an incentive/subsidy and entitlement/welfare?

    Perhaps instead of calling what poor people receive welfare, maybe we could call it an incentive?
    Perhaps instead of calling what businesses receive an incentive, maybe we could call it a handout.

    Then maybe you'll finally see the point that Mr. John Florez was making. He was correct on all accounts. And it's sad to me, that a state which prides itself so much on Christian living, would confuse these two issues. Here, we have no problem accepting federal bucks for the stuff we want (roads, corporate handouts, etc) yet refuse to help those most in need.

    Helping out the corporate elitists is a great way to help business. It's not a great way to help people.

  • one old man Ogden, UT
    Aug. 16, 2014 10:43 a.m.

    @Karen R.
    Houston, TX

    Thank you, Karen. That is a very wise comment, well said.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 16, 2014 2:39 p.m.

    "Then along came the 2000s, when productivity continued to rise but job growth and the median income started to decline."

    Good point, but that process began in the late 1970's. Access Professor Richard D. Wolff for more analysis. And John, you should give a listen to Wolff too.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    Aug. 16, 2014 3:10 p.m.

    Corporation haters can't stand the thought that everything they buy in America is produced by those "evil" corporations. They can't stand the thought that those "evil" corporations hire 38% of all workers. They also can't stand the thought that Utah is in competition with every other State to lure those corporations to settle in Utah. They can't stand the thought that when people are working that those people don't need government welfare. They cry and moan whenever anyone gets off welfare because doing that proves that government is not god.

    We do not need more government programs; we need more businesses in Utah. We need to compete with any other bidder to get them here and to keep them here. The Governor knows what he is doing. Those who work for those companies appreciate what he has done.

    Those who live in glass houses , who have never owned a business, who never had to make payroll, who never had to compete will continue to tell us that larger government is the answer, even as many of them eat at the public trough, being funded by government to find ways to expand government.

  • Utefan60 Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 16, 2014 5:05 p.m.

    It is time that we pay attention to our citizens more than the interests of business. In saying that we need a balance of both incentives to private corporations and also incentives (which Mike Richards calls welfare)to our citizens. Business does not have the right to operate without social concerns. To do otherwise is greedy and self defeating.

    The real difference is the disparity of wealth in this country. The lack of ability for upward mobility from the lower and middle classes. If the "incentives" that allow business to flourish are allowed then it is imperative that those businesses provide more. These same businesses are the loudest when they claim issues with government interference but they sure do well with the government "welfare" that they received at taxpayer expense!

    And to ignore our own citizens is not only unchristian it is immoral and disingenuous.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    Aug. 16, 2014 7:24 p.m.

    Nothing in the Constitution allows any private citizen to receive personal welfare from the government. Those who disagree only need to read Article 1, Section 8 where the duties authorized to the Federal Government are found. Refusal to read is not an excuse. (General Welfare is not personal welfare.)

    Nothing in the Constitution put any kind of limit on the wealth that a citizen, or a group of citizens who pooled their investment funds could make.

    Nothing in the Constitution allows the government to redistribute wealth.

    Those who demand that Government ignore the Supreme Law of the Land so that Obama can tell us that he "changed" America to a land where the many are few by some fairy tale "rich guy" will find that they will soon become the "rich guy" and that Obama will continue to fly around in his "private" Air Force One to tell even more people to demand that YOU the "rich guy" do YOUR duty to pay their welfare.

    Meanwhile you"ll tell us that those "evil" corporations are the enemy.

    How about reading the Constitution?

  • gmlewis Houston, TX
    Aug. 16, 2014 8:28 p.m.

    @Utefan60: "The lack of ability for upward mobility from the lower and middle classes."

    I can't speak for Utah, but here in Texas we see a lot of upward mobility over the course of many years. First we struggle with poverty wages, then we seek education, then we scrimp with entry-level wages, and finally we prove ourselves enough to get a break and start getting ahead. Nobody said it would be easy, but looking back over a full career, I can easily see that prosperity comes from honesty and very hard work.

    The only thing I would change is the requirement for a bachelor's degree for every job that pays a living wage. That's just foolish. Let hard workers get those entry-level jobs, and let them avoid the crushing education debt. Let them self-educate along the way.

  • high school fan Huntington, UT
    Aug. 16, 2014 9:49 p.m.

    What am I missing here? Company after company has come to Utah, opened a new location and are paying starting wages of thirty to forty thousand a year, is that peanuts? Nobody has to work for peanuts if they are qualified for a better job! Maybe you and I will never be rich but we can both have a pretty good life if we try.
    I don't want government help, I just want the government to get out of my way and then I will take care of myself.

  • blackattack Orem, UT
    Aug. 16, 2014 10:58 p.m.

    This is a great article and I am happy to see several along these lines in the Deseret News. Corruption is rampant in politics and we have seen no exception in this state. It is good to see many like-minded individuals on here and I hope john will soon realize how apathetic corporations are towards their employees. They aren't all bad, they will bend over backwards for shareholders.

    While the tide rises for some, it is increasingly drowning others (see Florez talking about downward mobility, income inequality gap). In my opinion, there are several labor abuses commonplace among corporations: Examples: part time or temp work to avoid paying benefits, including healthcare; unfair wages (including executive salaries and bonuses after the financial crisis), unpaid "internships", sending jobs overseas while cutting their workforce, referencing a lack of "skilled workers" using visa workers (to pay low wages and no benefits).

    I hope I can find out who to vote for that actually care about the citizen's interests rather than those who find their campaign. It will benefit us all to have someone who has the moral courage and integrity to do so.

  • wrz Phoenix, AZ
    Aug. 17, 2014 12:01 a.m.

    @anti-liar:
    "It doesn't mean much when a full-time worker is only earning poverty wages... Then that worker does need welfare -- despite his full-time labor."

    You got that right. What is life without an ipad, computer, cable TV, smart phone, two late-model cars in the garage, a two week vacation each year, and a night out on the town once a week?

    @The Educator:
    "Helping out the corporate elitists is a great way to help business. It's not a great way to help people."

    Sorry to inform, but you need healthy corporations to have jobs for the people. If workers are not being helped you might wanna blame it on foreign competition.

    @Utefan60:
    "Business does not have the right to operate without social concerns."

    Sorry to inform (again), but businesses have but one objective... to maximize profits of owners (shareholders). If workers wanna get in on the bounty, all they need to do is become an owner (talk to your stockbroker for some help there).

    @Mike Richards:
    "How about reading the Constitution?"

    You might be forgetting about Obama's phone, pen, and pal, Attorney General Eric Holder.

  • wrz Phoenix, AZ
    Aug. 17, 2014 12:24 a.m.

    @gmlewis:
    "The only thing I would change is the requirement for a bachelor's degree for every job that pays a living wage. That's just foolish."

    There's alotta good jobs that don't require a bachelor's degree. But it does require the development of some kind of marketable skills.

    @blackattack:
    "...I hope john will soon realize how apathetic corporations are towards their employees."

    Corporations are not obliged to dole out big wages when/if they can get the job done cheaper. That's found in Econ 101.

    Besides, we have entered a global economy which simply put, means businesses and employees alike must compete with the rest of the world.

    Further, Obama, et. al., have been letting millions of immigrants (illegal and otherwise) into this country who are taking jobs and depressing wages.

    "They aren't all bad, they will bend over backwards for shareholders."

    The corporate mandate is to maximize profits for shareholders, did I say?

    "In my opinion, there are several labor abuses commonplace among corporations: Examples: part time or temp work to avoid paying benefits, including healthcare..."

    You may wish to talk to the Democratic Congress about that.

  • george of the jungle goshen, UT
    Aug. 17, 2014 7:31 a.m.

    Nixon enjoyed the best economical times yet he took us off the gold standard and open the door for the globalization of corporations.

  • Light and Liberty St. George/Washington, UT
    Aug. 17, 2014 7:48 a.m.

    Read the Constitution! Neither Corporations or Private individuals, rich or poor, should get "incentives" or "welfare". Mr. florez's point is well taken on the "incentive" side! However, Ias usual, he is so "caring" for the poor, he either wants Socialism, which most progressives are afraid to admit, or he doesn't understand the the Constitution, or rejects it outright. Until John and others can be absolutely honest about their motives and what they really want and believe, their words are very slippery for someone that is trying to see their point! Government should not be in the health care, welfare, and education business, nor giving "incentives to any business or corporation! If John, and others, actually wanted to help the poor, he would be advocated for religious liberty and the sermon on the mount, rather than an impersonal lazy man's approach to helping the poor, which is, "just let me pay my taxes and force others to do likewise". Which interpreted means, "I don't want to think about the poor. I just want somebody, or something else (I.e. Government) to take care of it". That way, a conscience doesn't have to be addressed!

  • GK Willington Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 17, 2014 10:25 a.m.

    to: Mike Richards

    I'm confused. I thought Corporations were people?

    Did you ever receive a Pell Grant or get Stafford Loan? I'm really curious to know if you'd let any of your offspring accept one?

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 17, 2014 11:56 a.m.

    RE: Mike Richards "Those who live in glass houses , who have never owned a business, who never had to make payroll, who never had to compete will continue to tell us that larger government is the answer, ..."

    I assume you direct this at me. Actually I have owned a business (X2). My last effort was in doing sample survey and some time and motion type stuff. I was too small to compete with the bigger outfits, even though I did get business. Managing employees is tough. I admire anyone who can keep a small enterprise running.

    So.. I have spent most of my life as an employee. As part of labor I know that labor has been taking a beating the last 30 years or so. I favor small "s" socialism with more cooperatives, a skill not taught in schools at any level.

    But I do also think government will have to get bigger to manage the environmental issues. Big problems require big solutions. But bigger government is not an unmixed blessing.

    My Dad was right when he said "everybody should be in business for themselves at least once."

  • blackattack Orem, UT
    Aug. 17, 2014 12:45 p.m.

    Wrz: I understand Econ 101 thanks. I have a bachelors in business management. You're right, companies don't have to pay fair wages--wages that Americans can actually live on. The problem is not profits (ex: Dow jones is highest ever), it is greed. How often do executives get a pay cut while cutting jobs? Corporations are all about pleasing shareholders and if you don't hear enough money to pay for living expenses, you don't have money to invest.

    Just because companies can get away with many labor abuses legally does not mean it is ethical. And that is the problem we face--it's ok bc it's legal, right?

  • carman Wasatch Front, UT
    Aug. 17, 2014 1:08 p.m.

    "The poor are put through a means test or work requirements; yet, there are no such demands for corporate CEOs."

    This article is merely a hit job on an easy target: "evil, greedy corporations". Tax incentives are not handed out willy nilly. They are generally provided based on meeting employment milestones, reaching investment criterion, and other factors. Government can invest in business development, or they can resort to the tried and failed policies of handing out money while failing to address the real causes of the widening income/wealth gap, namely a widening of the productivity gap.

    Those with rising incomes are those with skills, education, work habits, and a value-added mentality instead of an "hours-worked" attitude. Our modern economy has incredible scale and operating leverage to these highly demanded skills, as they create huge value. If Florez wants to lose the income gap, he should focus on math/science education, mentoring, instilling value-added work ethics, and on helping folks break cycle-of-poverty habits and behaviors. Complaining about government investing in business/job development may be good for selling papers and an easy argument to make, but it won't solve any real problems.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    Aug. 17, 2014 7:45 p.m.

    "This article is merely a hit job on an easy target: "evil, greedy corporations"."

    Hilarious! Usually the easy targets are poor people and single moms. Now suddenly the poor innocent corporations are easy targets?

    Ha!

    "Tax incentives are not handed out willy nilly"

    They're handed out depending on how much you bribe government officials.

    "Complaining about government investing in business/job development may be good for selling papers and an easy argument to make, but it won't solve any real problems."

    Gotcha. Helping poor and single moms so they don't starve is socialism. Handing out money to big corp so they can buy bigger yachts and buy more politicians is "good investing"

    "Besides, we have entered a global economy which simply put, means businesses and employees alike must compete with the rest of the world."

    Ok. So what are we doing to help employees compete? Mr Flores demonstrates well how we're helping businesses compete. But what about employees? Oh yeah, forgot, that's socialism.

    Big business and government married together is great. They work together to socialize the losses and privatize the profits. All at the expense of the American taxpayer. Great huh?

  • let's roll LEHI, UT
    Aug. 17, 2014 9:13 p.m.

    Development offices have an ROI formula they use to determine the merits of granting tax deferment or other incentives to lure business. Rather than speculate, why doesn't Mr. Florez do an FOIA request (or the State equivalent) get the information, share it with us and we can all judge how much sense it makes to grant the incentives.

    It is after all recruiting...states are all in the business of attracting jobs. Schools give their scholarships to high academic achievers and star athletes to attract the best talent to their schools...states do the same to try to attract the best employers.

  • high school fan Huntington, UT
    Aug. 17, 2014 10:39 p.m.

    When it comes to handing out money there has been nobody better than our current president. A half billion here, a half billion there and no product and no money. The federal government does not need to be assisting anybody with incentives, that should be left to the states if they see fit.
    The Feds do it poorly.

  • carman Wasatch Front, UT
    Aug. 18, 2014 7:39 a.m.

    Real Maverick:

    re: "Hilarious! Usually the easy targets are poor people and single moms. Now suddenly the poor innocent corporations are easy targets?"

    Yeah, like I said, the real drivers of poverty have little to do with corporate welfare. Clearly, crony capitalism is alive and well, and a large, but different problem. Confusing the two is great for news print (a la the Florez hit piece), and for partisan political trash talk, but will not address the real drivers of poverty and the wealth/income gap.

    Divorce, lack of commitment, lack of education, destructive habits and behaviors including anti-social behaviors, mental illness, lack of marketable skills, lack of communication skills and professionalism - these are the drivers of poverty, not corporate welfare.

    Billions of $ of handouts have not solved the problem of poverty, here or elsewhere. Human nature what it is, education and mentoring are the only long-term fixes. And even then, because of some of the drivers above, many will NEVER be lifted from poverty.

    My point: focus on the real issues and address them. And forget all of the easy, politically charged and motivated arguments that don't hold water.

  • the greater truth Bountiful, UT
    Aug. 18, 2014 11:42 a.m.

    @wrz
    @Light and Liberty

    Fantastic comments,

    Mike keep up the hard work leading the charge for right.

    All you on the left, shame on yourselves for selfish demands.

    Don't you know Utah is one the best run states in the country?
    Should we be more like Detroit?

    What's up with the demand for Fascistic control over businesses?

    You liberals have your fascistic states like Illinois and California and NY among others, lets us have our conservatively run state, and get your grabby hands off.

    If you believe how they run their states is so wonderful then go live there, and let have our place to live.

    Why does the left continually want to dictate to everyone and every business how everyone should live, and how every business should conduct business?

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    Aug. 18, 2014 12:27 p.m.

    Re: "Gary Herbert . . . seems to put corporate interest above the general public’s interest."

    Yeah, that's the same old discredited liberal/socialist saw Democrats have been peddling for decades. The fact that the needed recovery from Obama's most prolonged American recession exactly aligns corporate and public interests is simply beyond their limited comprehension.

    Perennial one-trick-ponies, liberals/socialists can conceive on no "solution" to a down economy other than punishing it -- and real people -- with unsustainable taxes and regulation. Then, when the whipping invariably fails to increase our economic morale, liberals always insist on a "solution" amounting to nothing more than more whipping. It's part and parcel of their disingenuous, ill-concealed push towards the "dictatorship of the proletariat" a few of the most callow and doctrinaire may actually believe will produce a classless utopia, motivated only to better the human condition.

    It's been tried scores of times. It has never worked. But, that'll never stop the latest crop of callow liberals/socialists, like Mr. Florez and his apologist commenters, from insisting they're so much better than the previous crop, they can somehow make it work.

  • TheProudDuck Newport Beach, CA
    Aug. 19, 2014 4:18 p.m.

    Government declining to stick it to companies quite as much as it could isn't entirely comparable with giving people government money, is it?