Economy and Jobs in Michigan
Beaver Aerospace and Defense, Inc.
July 24, 2003
3:29 P.M. EDT
Thank you for the warm welcome. Thanks for letting me come by to say hello.
(Laughter.) First, let me just say I appreciate the hardworking folks here
at Beaver Aerospace for making sure that Air Force One functions properly.
(Laughter.) Otherwise, it might have been a long flight. (Laughter.) I appreciate
what you do for America's defense. I appreciate your hard work. I appreciate
your talent. I appreciate you help make this country strong.
I want to thank Bill Phillips and his family for inviting me. You know,
one of the great things about America is the entrepreneurial spirit of our
country. And Mr. Phillips is an entrepreneur. (Applause.) And one of the
things we've got to do in America is keep that entrepreneurial spirit alive
and well. And Mr. Phillips knows what I know -- you can be an entrepreneur,
but without good workers, good, dedicated, hardworking people willing to
run the machines and show up on time and work hard, the entrepreneurial spirit
is kind of empty. And so, first of all, I want to not only thank the Phillips
folks, I want to thank the people who work here in this facility. Thanks
for making America go. (Applause.)
And I am interested in making sure every one of our fellow citizens who
wants to work can find a job, and that's what I want to talk about today.
I want to talk about how to make sure this economy is strong and vibrant,
so our citizens can work and families can be hopeful for the future.
First, I want to thank the Secretary of Commerce, Don Evans, my long-time
friend. I appreciate his service. He's part of my economic team that is staying
focused on economic vitality and growth. I appreciate so very much Jack Kirksey.
He's the mayor here. Mr. Mayor, you've got a tougher job than I do. (Laughter.)
You've got to empty the garbage and fill the pot holes. (Laughter.)
I appreciate the State Attorney General, Mike Cox, for joining us today.
He's right here from Livonia. I want to thank members of the legislative
body: Senator Laura Toy and John Pastor, who have joined us today. I want
to thank the Chief of Police, who's with us. I want to thank the President
of the City Council that's with us. I want to thank you all for coming. We've
got quite a distinguished group.
I want to share the name of one person you've probably never heard of; it's
a fellow I just met when I landed at the airport. And his name is Walter
Piper. Walter is right there. Walter has been an active member of what they
call SCORE, which is Service Corps of Retired Executives. That should tell
you two things, or three things about Walter. One, he is retired. (Laughter.)
Two, he was an executive. And three, he is in service. And what he has done
is he's decided to provide counsel and advice to people who want to start
their own small business. He is volunteering his time to try to make the
community in which he lives a better place.
The reason I bring that up is there's a lot made about how strong we are
militarily. And we are strong militarily. And we will remain strong militarily.
(Applause.) But the true strength of America is found in the hearts and souls
of our fellow citizens. The true strength of our country is found in those
hearts and souls that have heard the universal call to love a neighbor just
like you would like to be loved yourself. No, the strength of our country
is the compassion of our fellow citizens, people like Walter who are willing
to dedicate their time and talents to make somebody else's life better.
My call to you is when you see a neighbor in need, when you see somebody
who's hurt, don't turn your back, but love them just like you would like
to be loved yourself. (Applause.)
This country of ours has faced many challenges over the last couple of years,
and I believe those challenges have brought out the best in America. Terrorists
declared war on us. On September the 11th, a date we will not forget, people
who hated our country, hate it for what we stand for, hated the fact that
we love freedom, declared war on the United States of America, and war is
what they got. We are hunting down the killers one at a time. (Applause.)
We are, slowly, but surely, dismantling the al Qaeda network. And we will
continue to find them and to bring them to justice. We owe that to this generation
of Americans and future generations to come.
In Afghanistan, a cruel regime, a brutal regime, had turned that country
into a training camp for terrorists. I declared as clearly as I could, if
you harbor a terrorist, you're just as guilty as a terrorist. So we removed
the Taliban from power, and freed people from the clutches of a barbaric
In Iraq, a brutal dictator was arming to threaten the peace. This brutal
dictator defied the demands of the free world. For years, he thumbed his
nose at the United Nations Security Council, time and time again. We gave
him plenty of time to disclose and disarm. He chose defiance, and the regime
of Saddam Hussein is no more. (Applause.)
Our brave troops still face danger in Iraq because there are people there
who hate the thought of a free society. They can't stand freedom. And they're
dangerous. But we're finding these terrorists, as well, and we're bringing
them to justice. As you know, earlier this week, two of the favorite henchmen
of Saddam Hussein were brought to justice. They were discovered and their
violent careers ended in justice. These two sons of Saddam Hussein were responsible
for hundreds and hundreds of people being tortured and maimed and murdered.
And now the Iraqi people have seen clearly the intent of the United States
to make sure that they are free and to make sure that the Saddam regime never
returns again to Iraq. (Applause.)
Our brave men and women serving to free -- make sure Iraq is free are serving,
as well, on the war on terror. A free and democratic and peaceful Iraq will
not threaten America and our friends with illegal weapons. A free Iraq will
not provide harbor and money to terrorist organizations which would like
to hurt America. A free Iraq will not destabilize the Middle East. A free
Iraq can set a hopeful example for the entire region. And as the pursuits
of freedom replace hatred and resentment and terror in the Middle East, the
American people will be more secure and the world will be more peaceful.
We owe a significant debt of gratitude to the men and women who wear the
uniform of the United States of America. (Applause.)
Our nation has responded to challenges here at home, as well. Think about
what we've been through. As I was showing up into office, the stock market
had been falling for nearly a year, and the country was headed into recession.
And then after the recession came the attacks of September the 11th, a significant
attack on our homeland. It caused the economy to sputter. It significantly
affected our capacity to generate jobs.
And then we found out that some of our fellow citizens forgot what it means
to assume responsibility. They didn't tell the truth. Corporate CEOs around
this country didn't tell the truth to their shareholders and their employees,
and that shook the confidence of America. And then, of course, the drum beat
of war shook the -- began to affect the ability for this economy to grow
We've overcome a lot because we acted. First and foremost, in 2001, I worked
with Congress to pass tax relief. And history will show that the recession
we're in is one of the shallowest recessions our country has had. We passed
tough laws that say to a corporate criminal, if you lie, cheat, or steal,
you will be held to account. (Applause.)
Last year, when it looked like the economy was still sputtering and wasn't
strong enough, when we realized too many Americans were still struggling
to find work, and too many families were having trouble meeting their monthly
bills or saving for their child's education, we acted again, and I convinced
the Congress to pass the Jobs and Growth Act.
And that's a significant development in terms of economic vitality, because
the more money people have in their pockets, the more they will demand a
good or a service. And when somebody demands a good or a service, in this
economy of ours, somebody will produce a good or a service. And when somebody
produces that good or a service, it means somebody is more likely to find
The jobs and growth plan came at the exact right time in our history. Part
of that jobs and growth plan is to increase the child credit from $600 to
$1,000 per child. But I thought it was necessary to act quickly, so I asked
Congress to make it retroactive to January 1st of this year, and they agreed.
Today, I went to Philadelphia. I saw firsthand the checks that are being
printed, that are fixing to be sent to the people who have got children who
qualify for the child credit. That is -- $13 billion is going out the door
to be in the pockets of our fellow citizens; $13 billion for more money for
people to save or to spend, but to do with it which you want to do with it.
After all, we're talking about your money, not the government's money. (Applause.)
Part of the Jobs and Growth Act continue to bring down the marriage penalty.
Seems like to me that the tax code ought to encourage marriage, not discourage
marriage. I don't know why you want to penalize marriage. But part of the
Jobs and Growth Act also reduced the overall tax rates people pay. It cut
the individual tax rates across the board. You're going to have more money
in your pocket. That's what we want. That's part of the economic jobs and
The interesting thing about reducing taxes, as well, it helped a lot of
small businesses. And the cornerstone of any good jobs plan is to encourage
small business growth. A lot of small businesses pay tax at the individual
tax rate. They're subchapter S's or they're what they call sole proprietorships.
And so when you hear us talking about rate reduction, I also want you to
think about your neighbor who is a small business owner. And their taxes
are going down. And that will have a positive effect on economic vitality
We also changed the policy on taxes on dividends and capital gains. And
let me talk about what that means. It means many companies have now decided
to pay a dividend to the people who own the company, the thousands of shareholders
all across our country. Many others have increased their dividend. And as
a result, there are billions of dollars of cash now going into the economy,
to the people, to the shareholders, large and small. And that will encourage
savings and investment and spending.
Now, let me talk about the jobs act in terms of small business. Not only
will it affect small businesses by reducing the income taxes on small businesses,
we allowed small businesses to deduct more money up front when they buy new
equipment. And that's important. We want people to buy more equipment. You
know why? Because somebody has got to make the equipment. When there's an
incentive for small businesses across the country to buy a new piece of machinery
to make their business more productive, it means somebody has got to make
that machine. And when somebody makes that machine, it means somebody is
going to be working, making the machine.
Here at Beaver, you're going to save about $70,000 on taxes. And that means
more money that goes into research to develop new products. And that's important.
If I were a worker here, I'd want to be on the cutting edge of new products.
I'd want the people who run this company being -- thinking about how best
can I use my talent and my skills to build a new product to stay competitive.
As Bill Phillips said, it gives us the money to do some research.
But he also said, it gives us some money to build new products. He's already
hired 14 workers this year. He says to me, the tax relief will enable him
to hire 10 more workers. That's 10 more people working. (Applause.) There
are small businesses -- see, we're not talking about just this company here.
There are companies all across the country like this company. And if you
have 10 hired here and 10 hired there and 10 hired over there, and all of
a sudden those 10 start adding up. And our fellow citizens are getting back
to work. And that's what we're here to talk about, how to get Americans back
Mike Gendich is here with us. I had a chance to visit with Mike. He owns
a company called Metalmite. He makes parts for Beaver Aerospace. He had a
backlog of orders of only two-and-a-half weeks over the past three years.
His orders are picking up. That's a good sign. See, when the small business
guy's orders begin to pick up, he begins to get a little confidence, a little
bounce in his step. And the backlog is now two-and-a-half months. He's added
three workers in the last two months. And now, with $22,000 of tax relief,
he's decided he can afford a vertical milling machine, to keep those three
workers busy, to make sure they're more productive.
But somebody has got to build that vertical milling machine. And so the
some person out there whose job is more secure, or perhaps a new job, thanks
to the fact that Mike is taking advantage of the tax relief. And that's what's
important for our fellow citizens to know. There's a ripple effect throughout
our economy. As people make decisions, whether you're a consumer, or whether
you're a small business owner trying to buy a machine, it affects economic
vitality and growth. It affects more than just one life. And that's the whole
purpose of the tax plan, was to have a ripple effect throughout the economy
that's positive and far-reaching.
Nevin Groce is with us. He's from Grand Rapids. He owns L & G Industrial
Products. He said, times are a little slow. But all of a sudden, he's beginning
to see action being taken, and he sees a better future for his company. He's
going to save $20,000 under the 2003 tax relief act.
He says that what he's thinking about doing is buying a large industrial
saw. In other words, here's a guy whose business isn't quite the way he wants
it to be, but he's getting optimistic because he's got a little more money
in his pocket -- more than a little money -- $20,000, which is a lot of money
for a small business. And so, he's thinking positively. He's thinking about
making new investments.
Dennis Orlewicz is here. He's a small business owner, Magnum Manufacturing.
He's an S-corp. That means he pays taxes at the individual income tax rate.
We've reduced the taxes on his business by $3,500. It will save him $8,000
-- individually, and then $8,000 in his business. Excuse me. He's thinking
about buying a $250,000 machine. His quote is, "Tax relief makes investment
Here's what I'm telling you. We've got to focus on small businesses, first
and foremost. Most new jobs in America are created by entrepreneurs and small
business people. The plan I'm describing to you creates incentive for people
to make investments to make their small business more competitive, to make
their workers more productive. And when they make investment, it helps somebody
else who has to make the machine in the first place. The jobs and growth
bill is important for economic vitality in America. (Applause.)
I want to make sure the jobs and growth bill extend to all our citizens.
The child credit must be given to low-income Americans, as well. They passed
a bill in the Senate. They passed a bill in the House. They need to get the
differences resolved and to my desk. I want the benefits of tax relief all
across the spectrum of our society. (Applause.) Economists were saying this
economy is picking up. They're feeling positive about America and its economic
future. They know what I know; we've been through a lot and we're strong.
Interest rates are down. That makes it easier for a person to buy their
house. If you got your house, and interest rates are down, it means it makes
it profitable to refinance your house, put a little extra money in your pocket.
Inflation is low, which is positive. Productivity is up. No, signs after
sign after sign says we're poised for growth so people can find work.
But there is more to do. I want to share some other thoughts with you. First,
we need an energy policy in America. We need a policy that recognizes we
can do a better job of conservation, that we can do a better job of developing
technologies that will enable us to develop energy sources in a cleaner way.
But I'm worried about natural gas. See, the demand for natural gas is going
up, but the supply isn't, which means it's going to start affecting people's
pocketbooks. We've got to do something about that. We need an energy plan.
We need to be less dependent on foreign sources of energy. (Applause.) The
House passed a bill the Senate is stuck in the Senate. They need to get moving
and get a bill to my desk.
We need to make sure that we have -- diminish the number of frivolous lawsuits
in our society. (Applause.) Pushing hard for class-action reform. The House
passed a bill, the Senate has got to act. It's junk lawsuits that are affecting
the cost of your health care. Listen, if you got hurt by a bad doc, you've
got to have your day in court. But what we don't need is lawyers fishing
for a rich settlement all across the country, which means you're either driving
up the cost of health care or you're driving the docs out of business. One
of the things we ought to make sure in America is health care is affordable
and accessible. (Applause.)
When you're good at something, you ought to make the environment such that
you can move product. If you're good at manufacturing, you want to sell it
all around the world. If you're good at growing crops, we want to be able
to sell our crops around the world. If you're good at growing cows, we ought
to be selling our cows around the world. (Laughter.) One way to make sure
that we can increase jobs is to get some of these countries to open up their
markets to United States products. We're competitive. We've got the best
workers in the world. (Applause.)
These are some of the things we can do to make sure this economy grows.
I'm interested in helping people find work. I want it so that everybody in
America who wants to work and can't find a job today can work. I also know
that we've got to help people who are trying to find work. Sometimes technology
races ahead of the work force. Sometimes people can't find work, even though
they want to. So what I proposed to the Congress is they create what they
call unemployment accounts, for people that are seeking jobs that are hard
to find a job.
This basically says that you get $3,000 to help yourself find a -- to help
find a job. And you can use the money the way you see fit. For example, if
you need child care, it will help you pay for the child care, or if you need
extra job training, or if you need to move to a community in which there's
a job. And part of the incentive in there is if you can find a job within
13 months, you get to keep the balance of the money from what you've spent
to help yourself find a job and the $3,000 as a reemployment bonus. We've
got to help our workers be ready to work and find work. (Applause.)
Now, I know you've heard talk about the deficit in Washington, D.C. Yeah,
we've got a deficit. We've got a deficit for a couple of reasons. The main
reason is, is that when you're in a recession, less money is coming into
the Treasury. When the economy slows down, there's less tax revenue coming
into the U.S. Treasury. And we've been going through slow economic times.
Another reason we've got a deficit, because I asked Congress to spend enough
money to make sure our troops had the best equipment necessary to fight and
win war. (Applause.) Anytime this nation puts one of our youngsters into
harm's way, we'd better -- and we will -- make sure they get the best training,
the best equipment, the best possible support.
And so we got a deficit. But I've got a plan to cut the deficit in half
over the next five years. It starts with making sure this economy grows.
First thing you want to do in trimming the deficit is to make sure you get
more revenues into the Treasury. The best way to get more revenues in the
Treasury is not raise taxes, slowing down the economy, it's cut taxes to
create more economic growth. That's how you get more money into the U.S.
And the other way is you make sure Washington doesn't overspend, that there
be fiscal discipline. (Applause.) I got the Congress to support a 4-percent
increase in discretionary spending. That's about the size the average household
budget will increase this year. If it's good enough for the households in
America, it ought to be good enough for the House of Representatives. (Applause.)
They agreed to the budget of a 4- percent increase in discretionary spending,
and now we intend to make them -- hold them to their word. There's going
to be budget discipline in Washington. That's how you deal with the deficit.
The main -- my main focus is making sure our citizens can find a job, and
I believe it's going to happen. See, I believe in the future of the country
in all aspects because I know the character of our people. This country has
been through emergencies and scandals and war and recession, and we have
responded. We're a strong country, because we're full of strong people. We've
got people of character. (Applause.) We've got determined people. We've got
people who understand values. We've got people who understand service to
something greater than yourself. This is a fabulous land, and I am so honored
to be the President of the greatest country on the face of the Earth.
Thank you for coming. Thank you for giving me a chance. May God bless. Thank
you all. (Applause.)