So, I know probably 90% of the society will disagree with me on this one. Because, come on, Gaby, businessmen only want to do themselves good, and politicians are there to make the lives of common people better.
Do they, really?
Obviously, in their day to day work, businessmen do focus on making the most money possible for their business, rather than the average Joe and his wellbeing. To be honest, it makes perfect sense, because why would they care about someone they don’t know? Don’t tell me you spend your days wondering about how people across the country are doing. I, for one, don’t.
Politicians, on the other hand… They spend their lives, day in, day out, making sure every citizen of their country is happy, has enough to live on, the country is developing at a steady pace, and all that jazz. Or is it more true that, although they do occasionally pay some attention to the average Joe, they appear to be using a good portion of their energy trying to insult their opponents, or seize some portion of the power for themselves. Or disappear when times get hard, deciding they would rather have a holiday than deal with a mess they had created. Like Boris Johnson, Nigel Farage and David Cameron have in the recent weeks. They’re so engrossed in making sure you and I have good lives, that they decided to step down and… do nothing for us.
Of course, there are good politicians in the world. There are also bad businessmen. Like those who defraud or embezzle. Like the one in the Money Monster movie. But do you not have a feeling that the good politicians are the ones who work at a more local level? Those actually in touch with their community, who understand its needs. Ones whose positions maybe don’t grant them amazing power or offer big salaries. I feel like these might be the ones who actually fit the average person’s definition of the politician. But I digress.
With businessmen, I feel like there’s much less of a divide. Whereas high level politicians will tell you anything they think you want to hear if only it means you will vote for them (like Nick Clegg when he promised he won’t increase university tuition fees. Then tripled them). Which, frankly, is quite petrifying. Every 4-5 years (depending on the election type and country we vote in), we fall for the same set of empty promises and outright lies.
Now, businessmen are rarely regarded as positive figures by an average person. They don’t promise them to change their lives. Actually, they don’t really promise them much, unless they’re selling some product. Yet I will still trust a businessman over a politician. Why? Because a businessman might bring me money in the process of getting money for themselves. A politician will promise to bring me more money, but most likely will only bring themselves more power.
One thing that people forget about when it come to big business is that, even if they pay some laughable taxes, percentage-wise (like 2%), it is still a hefty amount of money, which the government can later use to fulfil their promises. Or not. Those business will also give jobs to hundreds, or even thousands, of people, who will later pay income tax. Which, yet again, will fund the actions of the government.
We do need politicians. Someone needs to organise healthcare, armed forces, education. Someone needs to make sure there are new roads being built, new laws being passed, and that the businessmen are controlled.
But we also need businessmen. They ensure there are taxes coming into the treasury, and that the economy is moving forwards, not backwards. We need entrepreneurs, risk takers, who will innovate. They might fail sometimes. Or quite often, even. Through no fault of their own, or because they’re stupid. But they will make far fewer empty promises in the process. So yes, I do trust them more.
Now look around you. At your computer, phone, shoes, books. Whatever it is you have at the arm’s reach. And tell me which of those you have because of a decision that was made by a politician. And which ones are a result of some crazy person coming up with a crazy idea, like selling books at affordable prices (Penguin) or making computers usable and available to common person (Microsoft).
Because if you’re waiting for the politicians to make you happy, just because they said so, then, well, you’re kinda screwed.