The Home Depot legend wasn’t mincing words in my interview with him yesterday. He wants small businessmen to join www.jobcreatorsalliance.org, and he wants the president and his team to get a clue. The complete transcript is here. Key exchange:
HH: Let me ask you, Bernie Marcus, people will be very interested in this, do you think we can turn this around? Can this economy go back to the era of growth that Home Depot experienced in the 80s and 90s? Is that possible again?
BM: Listen, the American people are very resilient, unlike other people in the world. We just have to get out of their way. We just have to allow them to grow. And if we don’t do that, and we can’t keep putting in impediments. Look, I know so many small business people today. Nobody wants to expand. They’re not willing to expand today. There’s such uncertainty out there. You have a group of people in Washington today, where they’re the bad guys. I mean, if a man has a successful small business, and he’s making $200,000 dollars a year, he’s the enemy of the world.
HH: Yeah. Do you think the President understands this at all, Bernie Marcus?
BM: I…look, look. I’m sure this guy is, I’m sure his head is in the right place. He just doesn’t understand it. He never worked for a day in his life. How would he know it?
BM: He never had to make a payroll, and he has surrounded himself…there’s a statistic that’s very important. They had a statistic on how many businesspeople worked in every administration. The typical one, the smallest one was something like 35% were in the business world. This administration, it’s 8%. He’s surrounded by college professors, he’s surrounded by economic professionals, but nobody has ever created a job in this administration.