We Have A President Who Has Never Received A Paycheck?

Originally posted at centrist blog The Motley Moose

TalkingPointsMemo points out an (unsurprisingly) ridiculous claim from the April 7th "Morning Joe" show on MSNBC. President Obama, despite being a self made millionaire several times over (the sort of thing I thought Republicans admired) has, apparently, never earned a "paycheck" in his life.

SCARBOROUGH: Think about this: We have a president who has never received a paycheck. ... This guy -- think about it -- he's running Detroit, he's running Wall Street, he's gonna run other sectors of our economy. Andrew, he's never received a check from a profit-making business in his entire life. Not one check. ... Think about the radicalism of that!

Watch it below:

Really, Joe? How about the working at several law firm parts, the law professor part, the state legislature part, the senator part, or the president part? Maybe those last three don't count- I keep forgetting, government creating jobs is all just a liberal myth, right? Come to think of it, though, President Obama also work at Baskin-Robbins when he was in high school? And why the hell is how many paychecks someone has earned in their life a character assessment or a judge of how well they will do a job?

So, if I have it pegged correctly:

Collecting dividends from Daddy's trust fund = earning a paycheck.

Drawing a salary from serving your state/country as a Senator ≠ earning a paycheck.

Is that about right?

I mean, if you want to make a point about President Obama having a limited amount of private sector experience relative to him making important decisions about companies like GM, Chrysler, AIG, et cetera- but give me a freakin' break- make that claim.

Hell, it seems like 'ole Joe himself didn't do much except go to law school, work briefly for a law firm, and then get elected to Congress. By this logic, I could certainly make the claim he's never earned a "paycheck", either. He's certainly never had to work a nine to five, or work two jobs to put food on the table for a baby girl, or wonder how you'll make the next mortgage payment.

Say it ain't so, Joe- there you go again. Distortions and false equivalency. Pretty much par for the course though, eh?

Tags: morning joe, obama, paycheck (all tags)



Tips for, doggone it!

Looking ahead and tell Americans the truth!

by ragekage 2009-04-07 06:09PM | 0 recs
Re: We Have A President Who Has Never Received A P

Um... While I think Joe is a douche...

University of Chicago, the State Legislator, US Senate and the POTUS are not profit making businesses... which is what his quote was.  Using them doesn't support your argument.

The law firm does though.  

by 30000Fine 2009-04-07 06:16PM | 0 recs
Re: We Have A President Who Has Never Received A P

Teaching at a private university ≠ a for-profit organization, and writing two best-selling books ≠ for profit?

by ragekage 2009-04-07 06:29PM | 0 recs
Re: We Have A President Who Has Never Received A P

I believe University of Chicago is a non-profit organization.  Just because its a private school doesn't mean its a For-Profit organization... it just means it doesn't receive state funding.  Non-Profit is a tax status...

Again, not saying Joe is right... just saying that what he said was FOR PROFIT businesses and many of the ones mentioned are non-profits.  

However, the books are a great example of for-profit work.  

by 30000Fine 2009-04-08 07:54AM | 0 recs
Re: We Have A President Who Has Never Received A P

and to be really technical about it, book royatlies are not "paychecks" in the classic sense. Nevertheless, he did work for a lawfirm. Larger point: It's irrelevant. Republicans use this type of argumetn all the time. "Gubbamint jobs ain't work", but they would never say to this someone who spent his adult lifetime in the military, which isn't a for profit organization.

by Mayor McCheese 2009-04-09 11:11AM | 0 recs
Just to clarify, too

These are also people not working for a profit-garnering organization, so, by Joe's logic, they're in the same boat as the President.

by ragekage 2009-04-07 06:43PM | 0 recs
Actually, Joe probably thinks those guys

are just welfare queens, bleeding the public dry...

He prefers those Private Industry soldiers like Blackwater, that make 10 times as much and kill civilians with impunity?

Joe, you are such a muther f-ing douche pile of sh*t!

by WashStateBlue 2009-04-07 10:30PM | 0 recs
More than half of Americans

have never had a paid vacation in their lives.

A very high number don't have, and have never had health insurance.

I didn't have health insurance until I was in my 30s.

Thats increasingly what we have to look forward to if we don't stop the vanishing job problem.

Crappy jobs with long periods of nothing in between them.

The whole concept of the white collar job is a fairly recent invention and its dependent on the need for management and information work. The next wave of changes in the workplace will impact white collar jobs substantially, like what happened with blue collar jobs in the last two or three decades.

Denial wont help.

by architek 2009-04-08 06:51AM | 0 recs
Re: Actually, Joe probably thinks those guys

No they worship the military. They get the gubbamint ain't workin' exception.

by Mayor McCheese 2009-04-09 11:17AM | 0 recs
Re: Just to clarify, too

I would concur... by Joe's logic they are in the same boat unless they worked for another company prior to the military.  

by 30000Fine 2009-04-08 07:55AM | 0 recs
Actually Joe....

The previous guy, you remember him...

No business HE was ever in (the ones daddy or his buds handed him) every made any profit, he usually drove them into the ground, like he did the US Economy...

Oh, except the Texas Rangers..There he made a killing, basically by blackmailing the tax payers into building a new stadium, then he cashed out big..

Hey, but to a dumb-F Republican like you Joe, that is probably a great success story?

Bleeding the Taxpayer to get Rich?

Come to think of it, your VP also, Herr Cheney, only had ONE job, and there again, bleeding the government dry was the key...

Man, Joe, I think this is a subject you as a Republican might want to avoid?

by WashStateBlue 2009-04-07 10:27PM | 0 recs
"Investor class"

Obama, by virtue of his father being a Harvard alum, was predestined for far more than the average child of a single mom.

Statistically, children of single parents rarely even get to go to a four year college. They are lucky if they get a two year degree.

Their hold on job stability is tenuous.

Most hourly workers and many salaried workers are seen as commodities by employers.

Even IT workers now are often seen as disposable.

by architek 2009-04-08 06:54AM | 0 recs
Re: "Investor class"

Obama, by virtue of his father being a Harvard alum, was predestined for far more than the average child of a single mom.

Uhhh, what?  Obama barely knew his father, and spent the bulk of his life with no support from him (emotional, educational, or financial) whatsoever.  You're suggesting that, because of Obama Sr.'s Harvard attendance, our POTUS was predisposed to wealth and opportunity?

Do you realize how stupid that is?

by fogiv 2009-04-08 08:09AM | 0 recs
Re: Actually Joe....

No defense of the former President here, but my perception is that very few of the people we would consider very wealthy got there without manipulating public institutions and taxpayers in a significant way.  There are mega-millionaires and billionaires who didn't, and both of them wish they had.

by SuperCameron 2009-04-08 08:07PM | 0 recs
Re: Actually Joe....

W's political connections were used to build a tax-payer funded baseball stadium.  The stadium enabled W and his partners to buy a team for $80 million and sell it for $250 million.  W "bought" 10% of an $80 million investment for $621,000.  If that is not influence peddling what is?

The buyer of the Rangers recently declared bankruptcy for his sports teams (although not his regular business).  All, he said, a negotiating tool to force down the interest rates on his loans.

Meanwhile we are spending $149.3 billion for a navy that sends a destroyer to chase down three pirates in a row boat.  Kerry's swift boat or JFK's PT boat would have donwe the job cheaper.
What experience does Gates have?  Did it help?

by David Kowalski 2009-04-09 06:58AM | 0 recs
"W" was business partners with Osama

one of Osama Bin Laden's brothers, I think I remember readng in Mother Jones once.. Their families go way back..

(That article was probably in the late 90s..definitely pre 9-11)

As I recall it, they partnered up in an company that bought surplus airplanes and rented them out to oil companies.

At the time "W"'s father was very well connected, so that helped him get business quite a bit.

Reminds me of the Middle Ages in Europe when all the kings and queens were related and their family feuds became wars that dragged on for generations.. Like the Hundred Years War..for example.. fought between the divine kings and queens of several countries over dynastc succession.

These days, one could say that one's college determines one's membership in the ownership society..

Obama's father was a Harvard grad, and although he didn't stay in the US, I would be surprised if that hereditary connection hadn't helped Obama quite a bit when he was applying to colleges.

I think the point is that America is increasingly more and more stratified along hereditary lines.

In any country, when good jobs vanish, hereditary wealth and "who you know" - one's connections, become more and more important.

As "the death tax" has been reduced, wealth concentrates.,

A number of sociologists have commented on a pattern that is clearly observable in the dynastic cycle in countries like China. Basically, each dynasty starts out relatively strong and free of corruption. (the elite of the previous dynasty were typically killed, along with their families, in each dynastic transition!)

But as time goes on, the wel conected in a dynasty tend to exempt themselves from taxation and pile a heavier and heavier burden on the common people, until they create an unsustainable situation. Then the old order s overthrown and the cycle begins again.. This happened countless times over China's 4000 year history and it can be traced.

Thankfully, political change in modern societies is rarely as violent as it was in ancient China.

But there still are echoes of the mandate of heaven cycle in the behavior of the elite in banana republics and perhaps even in our own country now.
In banana republics, the elite often have such great connections that the nations treasury is bankrupted by projects that funnel money to the friends of the elite. That triggers a monetary crisis and the IMF steps in, and typically they require austerity measures that strip the currency of value and eliminate social programs, any wealth owned by the government is privatized and corporations buy up the assets, whch can be things like water, from rivers, that the people thought was free, at fire sale prices. The rich have stashed all their money in offshore tax havens so they don't have anything that can be traced, so it is the middle class and poor who pay their debts off for them in tears.

Will we avoid the fate of banana republics? Will we stand up to the well connected addicts and say NO - this isn't sustainable?

by architek 2009-04-12 05:27PM | 0 recs
God, for a nickelm I would bitch-slap that a-hole

But come to think of it, that would be making a profit.

I'll do it for free!

by WashStateBlue 2009-04-07 10:32PM | 0 recs

I'll give you a greenback (under the table).  Make it happen.  ;)

by fogiv 2009-04-08 08:10AM | 0 recs

How dare you, what, do you think I am some kind of ......CONGRESS MEMBER!

Just contribute it to my PAC, WSBATRUEAMERICAN.ORG, and, you can put my GF on the board of a few big Pharma companies..She has a ways to go to catch up to Susan Bayh.

by WashStateBlue 2009-04-08 08:18AM | 0 recs
Re: We Have A President Who Has Never Received

that punk Dwight David Eisenhower never earned a paycheck working for a for-profit corporation!

Well, that's not true.  He did work as a night watchman as a teenager.


Otherwise, his experience as Supreme Commander of the Allied Forces in Europe during WWII would have been worthless!

by RickD 2009-04-08 08:31AM | 0 recs
Yes, and when Petreus runs for Prez in 2012/2016

We can remind Joe what a government welfare queen he is as well....

by WashStateBlue 2009-04-08 08:58AM | 0 recs
Ironic that Joe was a school teacher for a while

before he was a politician?

There is another evidently reprehensible job, if your qualifier is profit as the indicator of legitamacy.

Then, he was a lawyer before he ran for Congress.

Come on Joe, it's not like YOU had extensive experience in the private sector, yet YOU were qualified to legislate in Congress on issue involved in the private sector.

by WashStateBlue 2009-04-08 10:08AM | 0 recs
Re: We Have A President Who Has Never

Has John McCain spent even a day of his adult life in the private sector?  Forget for-profit businesses, I mean ANYWHERE in the private sector?

by Steve M 2009-04-08 11:18AM | 0 recs
Don't think so

I think McCain joined the military at 17 and has never left public service.

by Dracomicron 2009-04-08 12:17PM | 0 recs
Yeah, I heard this rant

It seems like Joe is gunning for the next big right-wing media icon now that Limbaugh seems destined for laughingstock status, which is really unfortunate, because his show's format is really condusive to the kind of devil's advocate style he was working during the campaign.

Honestly, I heard this rant and I couldn't believe the words were coming out of his mouth, because Joe is usually (slightly) smarter than that.

by Dracomicron 2009-04-08 12:20PM | 0 recs
Even If true

This type of argument is silly. Compare the following two resumes:

A. Joined the military after High school. served two years. Then went to college on the GI bill. Got a job working for a non profit and became director. Ran for Congress. Served there for a decade and then became Attorney General. Has authored several well written books on public policy.

B. Graduated High school. Went to work at McDonalds. Has been there for twenty years. Is a manager.

Who would make the better president?

by Mayor McCheese 2009-04-09 11:15AM | 0 recs


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