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We need a business approach to government

Original post made by Steve Klei on Oct 28, 2010

We need a business approach to government which is why I support David Harmer, Meg Whitman and Carly Fiorina. This is not a Republican v Democrat issue – this is an issue about managing our state and country.

All three of these are successful executives who have direct and hands on experience in how to manage a dynamic and large business. These skills are exactly what we need right now in Washington. I have been CFO for both private and public companies over the last decade and know what it takes to figure out what cuts need to be made – It is hard and takes determination. I am confident that they will take the time to figure what programs should be eliminated and will push to get expenses ROLLED BACK to align with our revenues. They will push to have funded programs not forever be part of the budget as they are today, but rather reviewed on a regular basis to ensure the program is still accomplishing its goals and that it is still worth funding given the current economic and political situation. That is how the most successful companies are managed – it is called "bottoms up" budgeting.

We must reverse the idea that spending should be independent of revenue. While I understand that some of program cuts that they will suggest will be painful, we must do it and do it now. We have completely lost sight that the money we are spending is borrowed. We all understand what too much debt can do to companies and our households – our country and California are no different – we just haven't felt the impact yet. We all know there are too many programs that just don't make sense anymore – maybe they did at one point, but not in today's environment, given our current economic position.

Finally like great business people, they will focus on incentives and programs that will create the environment which will grow our country's revenues allowing us to both judiciously increase our spending, but also begin paying down the national debt.

These concepts are a fundamental premise of managing the financials of a household, a company and must become the way we manage our state and country.

Comments (5)

Posted by Patriot, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 28, 2010 at 10:58 am

David Harmer was really a lawyer, not a business leader, and holds some very extreme libertarian views (like abolishing all public schools).

Fiorina undermined HP's engineering and research leadership but cutting R&D and relying on mergers and acquisitions for short term growth. Now HP is in a much worse position relative to its competitors.

I could see supporting Whitman as the lesser of two evils, but not Fiorina, and certainly not Harmer.


Posted by Rae, a resident of Mohr Park
on Oct 28, 2010 at 3:17 pm

So let me get this straight . . .

We should elect Ms Fiorina who, as CEO of HP 1999-2005, laid off 30,000 workers, sent American jobs overseas, and then pushed to expand the H1B Visa program in order to bring in skilled workers from China to temporarily backfill vacancies? Who defended the shifting American jobs overseas by saying, "There is no job that is America's God-given right anymore"? Whose actions as CEO caused HP stock to drop more than 60% in value, while HP competitor's stock prices increased? Of course there is the fact that Ms Fiorina, unlike the workers and stockholders at HP, was well-compensated. Not only did she collect a salary that totaled $20M (not including stock options and benefits) for her years at HP, when she was *forced to resign* she also walked away with a "golden parachute" of another $21M.

Or, we should elect Ms Whitman who, as CEO of EBAY 1998-2007, sent nearly 40% of eBay's work overseas? Then again, I can certainly see where Ms Whitman put what she learned while serving on the compensation board at Goldman-Sach's to work at EBAY, where she managed to amass her own personal fortune. Even now, Ms Whitman has multi-million dollar accounts managed by Goldman, and, if elected Governor, will solidify those ties even further since Goldman, as the underwriter of $78.9 billion in bonds issued by the state since 2006, has major investments in California's state finance.

As for Mr. Harmer's "record" . . . I guess he can always point to his time as the Campaign Manager and Finance Director for Utah Republican Mrs. Enid Greene Waldholtz. That was the campaign where the candidate's husband illegally funneled $1.7 million through the campaign finances in a check-kiting scheme – while Mr. Harmer was in charge of campaign finances. According to an interview in 1995, Mr. Harmer said "he repeatedly warned Enid Greene Waldholtz of cash flow and financial accounting problems caused by her husband." So, as Finance Director, he knew there were irregularities in the campaign financing, but not only did he *not* report the illegal activity to the law, Mr. Harmer stayed on in the campaign and became Rep Waldholtz' Washington Chief of Staff until the scandal made it clear that Rep Waldholz was not going to be reelected.

California *cannot* afford the Fiorina, Whitman or Harmer "business approach to government". We need representatives who will not lay off Americans in order to send the jobs overseas. We need representatives who don't close their eyes to illegal or shady financial dealings for personal gain – financial or otherwise.

Re-elect Senator Boxer and Rep McNerney who stood up for Wall Street reform and stood against shipping American jobs overseas. And as far as the Governor's race goes, even Ms. Whitman seems nostalgic for the California of 30 years ago because "anything was possible in this state" – when Jerry Brown was Governor.


Posted by mepartypatriot, a resident of Downtown
on Oct 29, 2010 at 7:19 pm

mepartypatriot is a registered user.

Ah, since when was Harmer a business person?

Whitman and Fiorina laid off employees but managed to give themselves a pay raise. Just like Schwarzenegger, they are vanity candidates.

No thanks.


Posted by Re-elect hacks, a resident of Danbury Park
on Oct 31, 2010 at 11:17 am

Right folks, let's just keep re-electing the same failed politicians who have gotten us to the point we are at today.


Posted by Patriot, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 31, 2010 at 3:56 pm

"Right folks, let's just keep re-electing the same failed politicians who have gotten us to the point we are at today."

Which ones are those? The ones we'd be voting out, or the ones we'd be voting back in?


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