Dave McArthur owns a few bakeries in St Louis, Missouri; McArthur's Bakery. His bakeries make treats of legendary appeal throughout the St Louis area and Dave is a local media personality as well. Most of us think apple turnovers and politics aren't really compatible in the same sentence, but recently Dave's made them so. He didn't want to. He never intended to. He was forced into a corner and for his own survival, he had to. Here's why.
Dave has to make his cold mixed doughy goodness hot; really hot in order to turn the goo into heaven in your mouth. Bakery, baker, bake, hot, heat, ovens -- don't touch!
In other words, Dave is a user of energy and he needs to use that energy efficiently to feed his family, pay his 88 employees, and pay his vendors. But Dave, and the rest of the bakeries throughout the United States -- along with the glass blowers, hamburger stands, plastic injection molders, you name it --, have a new headache: The American Clean Energy and Trade Act (ACES) or Cap and Trade.
You will have a new headache too, because as you'll see from this one American small business, things are going to change as promised and not in a hopeful way if this monstrosity becomes law. It already passed in the House of Representatives.
Dave asked -- no, I've seen him twice on Fox News and the Glenn Beck Show -- he begged his representative Russ Carnahan (D-MO) to tell him exactly how the cap and trade bill will affect him. In fact Dave merely wants to know if there is a maximum amount he can see in natural gas and electricity prices as a result of the bill. It's a yes or no answer. Yes, there is a maximum amount or no there is no maximum amount.
Carnahan, who promised to meet with Dave privately to discuss the simple yes or no answer, stood him up for who knows what reason. However, Dave did get a ridiculous, purposely difficult to understand, non-answer in the form of a letter from Carnahan's staff member. And condescending? Well, Russ wanted Dave to know that he "doesn't take comprehensive energy reform lightly" and made it impossible for Dave to figure out just how much more he will have to spend to heat up his donut dough. You see, at the time Dave asked Russ Carnahan the simple question, the good Congressman had not yet read the bill for which he voted. Ain't that America? It gets better.
Dave was informed that the University of Missouri could come and give Dave's bakeries an "energy assessment." Since McArthur's Bakery spends more than $100,000.00 per year in energy costs (his cost is actually $158,000.00), he qualifies for a no cost to him (but a cost to taxpayers) "energy audit, detailing operating expenses, energy consumption and an action plan to help reduce your overall costs and energy consumption."
Isn't that great? Who knows more about running a business than a bunch of university professors and students who have never run a business? Yeah, they will show up to tell Dave what he intimately already knows. It's like "giving" Dave a free, taxpayer funded firm-grasp-of-the-obvious. No condescension there.
Oh but wait, I forgot. Guess how Dave and his partner and brother Randy, after calls, letters, and e-mails to Carnahan, were able to finally get Carnahan's attention?
At one of McArthur's bakeries there is a scrolling electronic sign. You know, the kind that lets motorists know you can get 3 donuts for $1.49? (and I'm telling you in my opinion they are one thousand times tastier than Krispy Kremes). After weeks of frustration from being 100% ignored by the guy who is supposed to represent him, Dave ran "Russ Carnahan Voted to Close Us and Other Small Businesses" on the marquee.
Guess what? Threats came from the über-Democratically controlled city to force Dave to take down the words. Had Dave not claimed his Constitutional right to free speech, making his sign a local news story which forced the city to back down, do you think Carnahan would have immediately contacted Dave and Randy to discuss with them cap and trade? Neither do I, because until the sign went up, Carnahan ignored McArthur.
The result? A promised face-to-face meeting with Carnahan that was broken and in its place, a "political speak" letter answering none of Dave's questions; a sort of "Dave, I'm giving you permission to eat cake," response from King Russ Antoinette.
Where do I come in? It's where you should come in. Your government is methodically, purposefully, knowingly, forcefully and powerfully punishing hard work, free enterprise and the largest employment source, small business, out of existence or into subjection to its whims. It's not at the "are they really doing this?" stage anymore. It's very near the reality stage. For a number of reasons including our dumbed down school system, our Fourth Estate, our overall national apathy toward anything not related to American Idol, Michael Jackson, or The Big Me and worse, a lie that says crippling businesses will "Save the Planet."
The fact that a roaring successful, well known and loved local business is crying out for help against an oppressive government, falling on deaf and condescending ears, ought to send a chill and not a leg tingle down all of our legs -- and spines. Dave McArthur is but one small voice sounding a huge warning to expose the lie to us all and we better take action or it will be to our peril. He hasn't been there. He is there and he understands that we need to send this oppressive government back to where it actually represents freedom and the Constitution so that prosperity can survive and hard work can be rewarded.
I'm not motivated to get involved because Dave's dangerously good chocolate cake soon won't be available, nor because Dave's a friend of mine. Dave McArthur doesn't know me from Adam. I'm motivated because I know freedom is about to end in this nation at an afterburner speed by the very ones elected and sworn to protect and defend that freedom. Dave is living proof of that. Their aim is for pure power over you and I. Mine is for freedom, free enterprise and glazed donuts. Yours should be too. My vote is for Dave.