Earlier this week, Florida timeshare mogul David Siegel sent an email to his company's 7,000 employees imploring them to vote for Mitt Romney. He didn't quite threaten their jobs; instead, Siegel argued that if Obama raised taxes on the wealthy any time in the next four years, it would be so devastating that'd he'd be forced to start laying people off. The letter was published on Gawker, and now Siegel, never a bashful sort -- he and his wife are building a 90,000-square-foo house they've nicknamed Versailles, after all -- has explained himself to Bloomberg Businessweek.
"If only businessmen voted in the election, Romney would win 99 to 1," he told the magazine. "The United States is like a big company, and we need a CEO to run it."
This is a curious metaphor that's worth pondering for a bit. Republicans are fond of saying government should run more like a business, which presumably means it should keep an eye on costs and strive to balance its budget, even if that means cutting services we all like. They repeat this nostrum often enough that "The Daily Show" dedicated a whole segment to skewering the idea. (Spoiler: we're firing Wyoming.)
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But running the whole country as a business? That's a different notion altogether, and one that would probably require abandoning some very dear conservative principles.