We are increasingly witnessing a clear narrative from the Obama administration—not just rewarding friends, but punishing “enemies.” As one writer puts it, the administration is operating off Nixon’s Enemies List on Steroids in which it is attempting to implement the anti-speech regulations originally pushed in the DISCLOSE Act through an executive order:
The order would require any company bidding for a government contract, its political action committee – and its senior officers—to provide in a convenient single report a list of all of their contributions to political parties and candidates for the past two years. These disclosures currently are required, but made in various reports to different government agencies. In addition, for the first time ever, companies and individuals would be required to report donations to “third party entities” including membership dues and charitable donations made to organizations that may engage in political speech in addition to their other activities.
That’s for their political enemies. What of the supposed enemies of their allies in Big Labor? Union bosses view efforts by Boeing to expand their production beyond a unionized factory in Washington State to South Carolina, where the company believes it can avoid the devastatingly costly type of labor strife it has faced in the past. So the union bosses have run to their partisan friends sitting on the National Labor Relations Board, which has filed a complaint that could possibly stop the company from expanding its operations (and, of course, killing jobs slated for South Carolina).
But as Boeing CEO Jim McNerney explains in the Wall Street Journal, Boeing is pro-growth, not anti-union and the NLRB has taken a terrible step toward wrecking free enterprise:
The NLRB is wrong and has far overreached its authority. Its action is a fundamental assault on the capitalist principles that have sustained America’s competitiveness since it became the world’s largest economy nearly 140 years ago. We’ve made a rational, legal business decision about the allocation of our capital and the placement of new work within the U.S. We’re confident the federal courts will reject the claim, but only after a significant and unnecessary expense to taxpayers.
Unfortunately, this problem is part of a larger assault on jobs and the economy, particularly at the NLRB. As Halt The Assault spokesman Brett McMahon writes over at The Daily Caller:
The action against Boeing is not an isolated event; indeed, it is only the latest symptom of a greater problem. Obama’s board has curtailed the rights of employees to seek a secret ballot election, shortened the period of time employees and employers may discuss important issues before an election, granted paid union organizers unprecedented access onto private property, cherry-picked employees to form a swarm of micro-union organizing drives that will drive small businesses out of business, and opened charter schools to greater unionization.
The laundry list of attacks on the ability to operate a business free from coercion by Big Labor and Big Government continues on as strongly as the president’s first 100 days, when it appeared the president’s men had locked onto key corporate targets and were going to exact a pound of flesh. But with the pattern having continued so long, one gets the feeling that it’s not one company or two companies that are really the enemy for the administration, but rather the notion of capitalism, free enterprise, and allowing entrepreneurs to create jobs.