January 26, 2018

Trump adopts Governor Scott Walker's line: "Wisconsin is open for business" becomes "America is open for business."

From Scott Walker's first inaugural address in 2011:
And as your Governor, I make this pledge: Wisconsin is open for business. We will work tirelessly to restore economic growth and vibrancy to our state. My top three priorities are jobs, jobs, and jobs....

Our first step is to rebuild Wisconsin's economy. And how will we do that? We open Wisconsin for business....

To begin our transformation, we will work with our legislative partners - in both political parties - to pass a series of bold reforms that will send a clear message: "Wisconsin is open for business."
From Trump's Davos speech today:
The world is witnessing the resurgence of a strong and prosperous America. I'm here to deliver a simple message. There has never been a better time to hire, to build, to invest and to grow in the united States. America is open for business and we are competitive once again. The American economy is by far the largest in the world and we've just enacted the most significant tax cuts and reform in American history. We've massively cut taxes for the middle class, and small businesses to let working families keep more of their hard earned money.
I thought Trump gave a great speech, and I'm not saying he plagiarized. I just want to shine a little credit on Scott Walker.

ADDED: "[V]ariations on the phrase have been used by politicians and states — including New Jersey, Texas, Virginia and West Virginia — to describe their own pro-business policies for at least two decades."

New Jersey, Christine Todd Whitman, 1994: "We will be competitive. No more losing our employers to job raids by low-tax states. New Jersey is open for business."

Texas, Rick Perry, 2010:



West Virginia, reported in 2006: "Last year, Gov. Joe Manchin III began changing a slogan on some state highway signs from 'Wild and Wonderful' to 'Open for Business.'"

And the winner is George Allen, who said "Southwest Virginia is open for business" in 1997. Remember George Allen? Speaking of rhetoric: He lost in the governorship after saying something wrong:
The pivotal moment in the campaign, and the one that the vast majority of political observers attribute Allen's stunning upset loss to [Jim] Webb, came on August 11, 2006, at a campaign stop in Breaks, Virginia, near the Kentucky border, where Allen twice used the racist slur "macaca" (meaning 'monkey') to refer to the dark-complexioned S. R. Sidarth, who was filming the event as a "tracker" for the opposing Jim Webb campaign. In what was dubbed as his "Macaca moment”, Allen said:
"This fellow here over here with the yellow shirt, Macaca, or whatever his name is. He's with my opponent... Let's give a welcome to Macaca, here. Welcome to America and the real world of Virginia."
Before that happened, people thought of George Allen as a potential President of the United States. Now, who thinks of him at all?

56 comments:

Yancey Ward said...

We need to know what nightmares Wisconsin Democrats have had about Walker- is he a tusked hummingbird or a flatulent flatworm?

Lance said...

Does Walker have what it takes to run for President again? He folded pretty fast in 2016, immediately after it became obvious the GOPe donors wouldn't back him.

Trump, Cruz and Carson all continued to run without GOPe support. And of course Jeb! continued to run even though no one supported him except the GOPe.

If Walker ran again, would he make the same mistake, and try to rely on GOPe donors? Or has he figured out how to run without them?

Greg said...

Just an amused observer from Canada, but my first choice of a neighbour to be president would have been Walker. Probably because where I live the greatest impediment on success is the public service unions who actively try to destroy the province. Our premier is a former Toronto District School Board member. You can't get any more Marxist than that. No prayer in public schools for Christians, but Muslim students are allowed a room for prayer time, and they let them force the girls to the back. You can't can't invent the level of hypocrisy involved.

Greg said...

Just an amused observer from Canada, but my first choice of a neighbour to be president would have been Walker. Probably because where I live the greatest impediment on success is the public service unions who actively try to destroy the province. Our premier is a former Toronto District School Board member. You can't get any more Marxist than that. No prayer in public schools for Christians, but Muslim students are allowed a room for prayer time, and they let them force the girls to the back. You can't can't invent the level of hypocrisy involved.

Greg said...

Just an amused observer from Canada, but my first choice of a neighbour to be president would have been Walker. Probably because where I live the greatest impediment on success is the public service unions who actively try to destroy the province. Our premier is a former Toronto District School Board member. You can't get any more Marxist than that. No prayer in public schools for Christians, but Muslim students are allowed a room for prayer time, and they let them force the girls to the back. You can't can't invent the level of hypocrisy involved.

Jeff Roth said...

Cultural appropriation!

Chuck said...

It's almost a joke, how much that line, "Michigan is open for business," has been in use among Michigan Republicans going back to at least 2012. Governor Rick Snyder, state senate majority leader Arlan Meekhof, Detroit News columnist Daniel Howes; too many others to list.

Did Scott Walker coin the phrase? I find it hard to believe, but I haven't searched it.

Balfegor said...

The American economy is by far the largest in the world and we've just enacted the most significant tax cuts and reform in American history.

I was going to say he made an elementary error in calling the American economy the largest in the world . . . but Trump was right, and I was wrong. I really did think the EU had higher GDP than we had. The rankings shift when we go to PPP (China > EU > USA) but still . . .

Rob said...

Trump used the "open for business" phrase before Walker--whenever his fly was undone.

Bruce Gee said...

That’s pretty disgusting, Rob.

Birkel said...

It is good that he is stealing from Governor Walker, my first preference for president in 2016.

The two characteristics they share, that matters most: both are capable of seeing how the power of the Leftist Collectivists is furthered and then attacking that power base directly.

Curious George said...

I stand with Trump, like Walker, because he does what he says; not just a big fancy talker.

Birkel said...

Rob mistakes Clinton for Trump.
Easy mistake.
Both were elected president.

AllenS said...

Walker will have to wait for 2024 to run for POTUS, because 2020 already has a winning candidate, the incumbent.

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

Anyone from Ohio. I think I remember Ohio state line sign had the "Open for Business" tagline back in the 90s or 00s.

donald said...

Fantastic!

Chuck said...

I thought Trump gave a great speech, and I'm not saying he plagiarized.

Barack Obama, October 31, 2013. "America is open for business":

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/us-is-open-for-business-obama-tells-foreign-investors/

The White House, January 20, 2012. "American is open for business":

https://obamawhitehouse.archives.gov/blog/2012/01/20/america-open-business

Hillary Clinton, February 9, 2008. "I am ready to make the case for the Democratic Party from universal health care to making it clear that once again America is open for business to the rest of the world, and the era of cowboy diplomacy is over."

http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/index.php?pid=76557

Bill Clinton, February 18 2007. "'Well, the first thing she intends to do, because you can do this without passing a bill, the first thing she intends to do is to send me and former President Bush and a number of other people around the world to tell them that America is open for business and cooperation again,' Clinton said in response to a question from a supporter about what his wife's 'number one priority' would be as president."

https://www.prisonplanet.com/articles/december2007/181207_b_Bush-Clinton.htm

Dana Perino as Press Secretary for President George W. Bush in 2008: "President Bush is thinking of the leaders around the country who are coming here this weekend, and he wants to make sure that they know that America is open for business. "

https://georgewbush-whitehouse.archives.gov/news/releases/2008/11/20081111-1.html

Big Mike said...

I suppose that Wisconsin is demonstrating that it is open for business by legalizing lemonade stands put up by kids in their neighborhoods. Apparently this is in response to police in Appleton shutting down a lemonade stand set up by two pre-teen girls back in 2011. Where is Appleton? That sounds like something I'd expect from Madison or Milwaukee, not from the rest of the state.

At any rate, given that the triggering event happened a mere seven years ago, it's good to see that the Wisconsin legislature is quick on its feet.

Hat tip to Dave Barry. Wait! Dave Barry?

Fernandistein said...

I tell the dogs to do their business in Texas.

Unknown said...

Trump has given a number of great speeches. Does anyone give him the credit he deserves?

wwww said...


I thought this line had a long tradition in American political rhetoric, "The business of America is business."


It's not being covered in American news, but there's a new TTP free trade agreement moving ahead for signature March 9th between Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam.

I've noted the increased inward focus of American news in the last year. As a result, I do not think many Americans are aware of the new TTP, unless they read or watch international news.

Matthew Sablan said...

"Does Walker have what it takes to run for President again?"

-- Sadly, the Walker momentum is probably gone, if there ever was any to begin with.

mikee said...

Yet Bill Clinton, a rapist, is still lionized by the Left.
He, too, should be forgotten in shame.

rcocean said...

The real reason Allen lost is the RNC and Senate Campaign fund didn't give him enough $$$. Instead they poured money into defending moderate/liberal Republicans in the Northeast - who of course lost.

Snark said...

"_______ is open for business" is about as promiscuous as a political catch phrase gets. I have heard it applied to dozens of places over the years by various governments at various levels.

Darkisland said...

I just listened to the speech, about 16 minutes, and thought it very well done. I like the campaign rally Trump speech better than this but for the audience it was spot on, sort of.

OTOH, if I had been in the audience, what I would have heard was "We're going to take your best businesses and industries because we're better than you." Absolutely true but if I was Germany going to lose another BMW or M-B plant, I would not be happy to hear this. If I was Ireland (I think it is) the announcement that Apple was taking $315BN out of my country would not have made me happy. It would be hard to see much joy for an oil producing country to hear that the US is going to take their markets.

Good on President Trump for telling it like it is.

I thought I had heard the "America is open for business" line before. A quick search turns up President Obama saying it in Florida in 2012. I thought it was quite a bit older from the 60s or maybe even the 50s but can't find anything offhand.

And President Coolidge said “the chief business of the American people is business.” I think President Trump realizes this and is setting us free to go about our businesses.

I've always liked President Trump and Mr Trump before. But I like him more and more each day. If he gets any better I'm going to want to become a woman and have his babies.

John "not tired yet" Henry

Chuck said...

Unknown said...
Trump has given a number of great speeches. Does anyone give him the credit he deserves?

I can think of one really great example. Trump's speech, a year ago, to the Joint Session of Congress. Trump was widely praised, from the Trump-skeptics at Fox News, to CNN, to a broad array of commenters across the political spectrum. Remember it? I'll bet you do.

It was a normal presidential speech; "normal" being a surprising counterpart to most Trump speaking engagements. Trump stuck close to the prepared text, which was mostly not too bad.

Here's the Trump-loathing New Yorker:
https://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/trumps-speech-to-congress-was-not-normal

The New Yoker put that out precisely because Trump had gotten so much surprised praise for actually doing a mostly-normal speech for once.

Here's the Althouse page from that night:
http://althouse.blogspot.com/2017/02/president-trumps-address-to-congress.html


rehajm said...

That 70s Show- Open for Business...

Kansas City said...

The Washington Post beat Allen by relentlessly pushing the Macacca story. It was brutal and obviously biased against him. Of course, Allen was stupid to make the statement. He apparently did not even know what the term meant.

traditionalguy said...

Walker was a courageous guy. If anyone gets the credit for Trump's strategy, it has to be Walker and not Bannon. IIR Walker was a Reagan man back when that stance risked attacks by the Secret Cheese Gestapo using secret prosecutions with a secret criminal case carefully designed look for a crime that was never there, but achieved a goal of to Bankrupting targeted political Defendants who had to pay their own legal fees.

Hmmm. That's RussiaGate redux.

Michael K said...

Walker was my first choice, also. He saw the money was not there and quit before running up a lot of debt.

I wonder how much Kasich owes ?

"The Washington Post beat Allen by relentlessly pushing the Macacca story."

The story was given legs by Larry Sabato who alleged he remembered Allen as a racist from their college days 30 years before.

I have not trusted anything Sabato says since the,

Molly said...

As Kansas City notes at 3:42: The Washington Post went a month or more when every edition had 10+ mentions of "macaca" (spell check wants me to say maraca). And the cumulative impact was to set more or less solidly in the public mind "Allen is a racist". In my opinion this macaca incident has been as influential as Watergate in setting the mindset of modern print journalists. "Collusion" can become a fact simply by repeated stories that use the term, even by saying "Is this proof of collusion?" "Trump associates deny collusion", etc. (And likewise for Trump competence, alheizmers) This approach requires not stories with new evidence, but just new stories over and over again to establish the narrative in the minds of the reading public.

Drago said...

LLR Chuck, who called obama "magnificent", remains unimpressed with Trump's speeches.

Unexpectedly.

Edward Willett said...

I can push the "Open for Business" slogan back to the early 1980s. In 1982, after the Progressive Conservatives, led by Grant Devine, turfed out the ruling New Democratic Party (democratic socialists) here in the Canadian province of Saskatchewan, winning the largest majority in the province’s history...

“The government was convinced that international investors shunned Saskatchewan because of its socialist reputation. A new image was needed. This was the main idea behind the ‘Open for Business’ conference co-hosted by the Saskatchewan government and the Financial Post on October 19-20, 1982.” - From Saskatchewan Premiers of the Twentieth Century, edited by Gordon Barnhart, University of Regina Press

The Tories' actual campaign slogan was, "So much more we can be."

Josephbleau said...

No Walker plagiarized HILLARY! since she told the Russians that the State Department was "Open For Business." Clinton Foundation sells our old broken Uranium 235 jewelry for Russian CASH!!!!!

Kevin said...

LLR Chuck, who called obama "magnificent", remains unimpressed with Trump's speeches.

Somedays I come here just to see how Chuck will spin the latest thing Trump did well.

We know what Inga will say, but watching Chuck try to say something without it being the Dem talking points can be quite funny.

Kevin said...

OTOH, if I had been in the audience, what I would have heard was "We're going to take your best businesses and industries because we're better than you."

How about they just service the US market from the US? Trump's speech could just as well have been received that they don't need to export everything to the US, but can invest to serve the world's biggest market IN the world's biggest market now that taxes have been equalized with the rest of the world.

Chuck said...

I don’t actually recall calling Obama “magnificent.” What exactly did I write? What was the context? Where is a link?

Because I have no illusions about Obama. I never once voted for him; and my general view of him is nothing like “magnificent.”

My default presumption in these cases is that you little shitheads are misquoting me, or mischaracterizing me, or just making stuff up.

Mike said...

LLR Chuck, who called obama "magnificent", remains unimpressed with Trump's speeches.

It almost pains me to point out that Chuck absolutely DID mention a Trump speech he liked. And it really was a good speech!

Drago said...

Chuck: "I don’t actually recall calling Obama “magnificent.”

Never go Full Inga, even if she is your biggest fan.

Unexpectedly.

Drago said...

LLR and #StrongDemDefender Chuck: "My default presumption in these cases is that you little shitheads are misquoting me, or mischaracterizing me, or just making stuff up."

A rule better applied to your beloved dems.

Drago said...

I sort of feel sorry for our LLR Chuck.

Once the House Intelligence Committee releases its memo can you imagine how furiously busy Chuck will be spinning to protect the dems?

And if anyone dares to criticize CNN, Durbin, Blumenthal et al I am pretty sure Chuck will completely lose it.

Chuck said...

You are a pussy, Drago. And a liar. You’ve been lying about me and what you fantasize about as my positions on various issues for as long as I can remember. You have no credibility. You’re not just a liar; you are a shameless, relentless, pathological liar.

Quote me and give us a link to wherever you think I made a judgment that Obama was “ magnificent.”

Dickin'Bimbos@Home said...

Obama: "we will tax rape you, and the hivemind collective will cover for me while I give it all to the mega corporate cronies who donated to my campaign."

Drago said...

"Bowe Bergdahl Republican" Chuck: "You are a pussy, Drago."

Ah yes.

There's the courage that led LLR Chuck to think seriously about joining the military but then he didn't 'cuz there was no draft.

Well played #StrongStolenValorBlumenthalDefender. Well played.

Drago said...

LLR Chuck: "You’ve been lying about me and what you fantasize about as my positions on various issues for as long as I can remember."

I've said nothing about your positions.

I only comment on the dems you defend vigorously and whose transgressions on which you passionately avoid any negative commentary while simultaneously making note of your vacuous criticism's of Trump for far less egregious actions/comments/behavior.

You provide endless, literally endless, examples of such on which to comment.

But only endless.

cf said...

I just watched Pres. Trump's Davos speech, and found it a marvel of straight-forward, no-nonsense delivery. As much as he noted his successes, his approach was humble and solemnly respectful to his audience. And the principles he identifies are so fundamentally sound, and already demonstrating their worth.

I will bet that he gained quite a few new "Come-Arounders" in that hall.

what a treasure this man is!

cf said...

. . . Oh, but your subject: Yes! Scott Walker was my first choice and my second choice.

But, wise America had a more amazing move in mind.

jaydub said...

"OTOH, if I had been in the audience, what I would have heard was "We're going to take your best businesses and industries because we're better than you."

I'm sure that was the foreign governments' takes, but I think he was talking to the business and industry leaders, not the government representatives. There is a lot real fear in Europe right now that the cheap energy, reduced regulations and corporate tax changes in the US are going to suck a lot of the available capital investment out of Europe. I saw a discussion on CNBC Europe a couple of weeks ago in which a German minister estimated that Germany, alone, was likely to lose several hundred billion euros in future investment capital given a European status quo situation. I'm sure Trump's speech did nothing to aleviate those fears, and good on him!

Qwinn said...

If Chuck didn't actually call Obama "magnificent", then you shouldn't say he did. He provides more than enough ammo that there's no need to exaggerate, it only makes him act even more like a martyr, which I think everyone is tired of.

gadfly said...

January 26, 2018 was a special night on Netflix, which premiered a five-part documentary entitled "Dirty Money." The special part that attracted my attention was the last part, which can be watched out-of-order called "The CONfidence Man." As you might expect from me, dear Trumpsters, it is all about Donald Trump - made for those who didn't care to delve into Trump's past. So here he is on display in all his hatefulness, dishonesty, stupidity and immorality - complete with Russian Oligarchs, gathered and tied together with greed and solipsistic self-love.

The documentary runs about an hour and supporters of the crook will find themselves on display cheering on the guy who will take their money and pride in the end. Let us pray for a quick return to the rule of law and sanity.

jaydub said...

@Gadfly: Jan 26 was also special because my somewhat conservative investment portfolio increased in value by around $22K. If, as you say, Trump's going to take my money in the end, he's going to need a much bigger wheel barrow than he would have on 8 Nov 2016. Just sayin...

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

So you're clarifying that Droopy/Dozy shouldn't get credit for parroting the shopworn line that he didn't create, but that he should get credit for parroting it.

Ok. Well done, business-types.

Curious George said...

"Qwinn said...
If Chuck didn't actually call Obama "magnificent", then you shouldn't say he did. He provides more than enough ammo that there's no need to exaggerate, it only makes him act even more like a martyr, which I think everyone is tired of."

Well, perhaps with the exception of Chuck.

James Graham said...

The WaPo can claim the scalp of George Allen.

They published one "macaca" article a day for a week or more.

Too bad.

He could have made it to the White House and might have been a big success.

Bad Lieutenant said...


Blogger gadfly said...
January 26, 2018 was a special night on Netflix, which premiered a five-part documentary entitled "Dirty Money." The special part that attracted my


Gadfly: Show us on the doll where the President hurt you.

Mr. President: Hit 'im again, Don!