The deceptive fallacy of the one percent

I had a very hard decision to make this Saturday morning: wake up early in Columbus, Georgia and run along the Chattahoochee River, or run when I got back to sunny beautiful South Florida — guess what I decided? So after landing in sunny, blue-sky West Palm Beach, I drove home to Palm Beach Gardens, unpacked, and headed out to run the 5.5 mile loop around PGA National.

Right now the annual PGA Honda Classic is going on — must admit since I’ve been up in Georgia I have no idea who is leading. As stated, it is a picture perfect first day of March in South Florida and as I ran, I watched nice vehicles with the tops down driving into PGA National. And it hit me, I was surrounded by a bunch of one-percenters.

I have never swung a golf club in my life. However, I live at one of the most picturesque golf courses in America. As I ran, I went by several tees (hope I got that right) and slowed my pace to watch these skilled athletes. They represent the tops in their chosen profession, one-percenters. At some time they were just young men who learned the game of golf, but their dedication, hard work and sacrifice elevated them to a place of prominence.

It is no different than south of me in Miami where folks go to see another group of one-percenters play, back to back NBA champions the Miami Heat.

And north of me in Tallahassee, there is another group of percenters, the 2014 NCAA football champions, the Florida State Seminoles. As I write this missive, I’m watching NCAA college basketball as the Wichita State Shockers seek to do something never done before: finish a regular season 31-0, undefeated. Dang one-percenters.

I live right near the 14th hole and after my run and pushup/situp routine, I walked between the house over to the fairway and watched the crowd follow the action. Just in the distance I could see the golfers and I watched their precision swings — truly a form of art.

You see, all around us are those who climb the ladder of success and achievement to be the best. They are those who set goals and objectives and seek to exceed establish standards and records — to be one-percenters. My wife Angela possesses a double Bachelors degree, an MBA, and a PhD and was the first black female professor in the College of Business at Kansas State University, her alma mater. She is a one-percenter – and all that from the daughter of Jamaican immigrants, and a dad who served two combat tours in Vietnam, a military retiree.

I have been blessed myself in being a US Army Combat Battalion Commander and a Member of the US House of Representatives — a one-percenter. And guess what? We’re raising our daughters to exceed the standards and achievements we have experienced — to be one-percenters.

Who among you out there is raising your children to be just mediocre?

Americans cheer the winners. And in this country, no one settles for being just part of the herd. Imagine the irony, one of the most liberal cities in America, Seattle, won the Super Bowl, in a big fashion. The Seattle Seahawks are part of the one percent and do you believe for one minute that the fans of that great city, the 12th Man, would share that NFL World Championship title with Denver or San Francisco? So much for “fair share” and “shared prosperity,” huh Seattle?

So where did this insidious ploy of the one percent vs the 99 percent come from? It came from progressive socialists who would prefer we just all be mediocre. It comes from liberal progressives like Obama who would prefer us subjugated to government grace, rather than allow us the opportunity to achieve our own personal greatness.

It comes from those who seek power, by way of tyrannical dominance, and will divide and manipulate us in every manner possible. I do not disparage Tiger Woods or Lebron James for what they have accomplished, after all, they earned it. So why do Democrats demean and degrade Americans who work hard, sacrifice, and earn a higher standard of living? After all, the pursuit of happiness, greatness, is one of the unalienable rights for EVERY American.

When we allow the liberal progressive liars to make us believe that we cannot pursue exceptionalism, that they and they alone are the guarantors of such — then none of us will be exceptional, a champion in our own pursuit.

The deceptive fallacy of the one percent is nothing more than a political gimmick, a poll-tested marketing ploy to make Americans forget we are exceptional. It is a ploy to make us surrender our God given right to pursue being a one-percenter. So to Barack Hussein Obama and his progressive socialist acolytes, shove it up your arse. I am a one-percenter and damn proud to be so, because I am an American.

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50 Comments on "The deceptive fallacy of the one percent"

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Bob Smooper
Guest

You need to get a job West. Time to actually graft! Reading Drudge and running in the Florida sun is not good enough. Stop living off your wife’s salary and GET A HARD WORKING JOB.

Vet4u
Guest

Wrong forum to complain Mr Smooper, Mr West does an excellent informatory job to us the public. And I for one agree with and support his columns.

Emma Brown
Guest

Hey, Bob Smooper! why don’t you go get a job!?? Obviously you have time to criticize a man who has served this country with HONOR!! WHATEVER he decides to do, he deserves it!

Joe Yarnell
Guest

Hey Bob, he actually does have a job. He’s trying to teach ignorant, illiterate, or just blatantly stupid people what they have done by voting in an illegal, unethical, immoral bunch of socialist, Communists, Islam loving, America hating fools into the Government of the US. Apparently he hasn’t gotten through to you yet.

Middlemary
Guest

He has a pension and is working hard to get Conservatives elected! I’d say he has his plate full!

retired
Guest

After he served for this country, his taking some time to enjoy life- well deserved. Maybe Prez Clinton should get a real job, instead of living off doing speeches and chasing women.

Erik
Guest

It looks like you obviously need to get a job, as well…..you have lots of time to read and critique Allen West. Ha. You loser, go do something productive.

Myra Askew Hall
Guest

Wish you had run on the Riverwalk!

Erik
Guest

The best I’ve read from you. Really well-said. Thanks.

Wolverine
Guest

Allen West for PreZ !

Philanthropussy
Guest

You know if West runs for preZ, he’s going to have to do more than FOX interviews . I would LOVE to see him on MSNBC!!!! Rachel Maddow or Al Sharpton!!!! Even dancing on Ellen.

The_Patriot
Guest

He has more class than barry does. More respect for the office of the Presidency, more respect for the Constitution, more respect for the American People, more respect for the Bill of Rights, more respect for our military men and women. True men or women who get into the oval office should not be on Letterman, Ellen, Radical Madcow. The give Press conferences and Time on TV giving speeches addressing the public with respect. Not clowning around like a pompous ass.

akatom3565
Guest

To many people are willing to settle for mediocre or worse to avoid being disappointed or defeated. It is one thing to be beat by someone better it is a totally different thing to beat yourself. We used to create people who keep trying now we seem to perfectly happy not even trying!

Reba
Guest

They do not want the people to succeed anymore. They want everyone to be dependent on the Government. “Our Country” is drowning and we have no one out there that is willing to stop it.

Philanthropussy
Guest

Yeah!!! 1%!!! Who take jobs from Amer and take them to China to help their Econ!! Yeah!!!! Yeah for firing full time employees abd hiring part timers to save money !!!! And never passing on the savings to consumers !!

The_Patriot
Guest

that is called business, Businesses are in business to make money. The drive is the all mighty dollar. that is the true bottom line. Like it or not the government drives the businesses to find cheaper labor to make the bottom line better.
barry is trying to destroy this country and the middle class through the ACA.
Destroying small businesses which drive the economy. You want to save jobs? then lower taxes, stop the ACA act. Lower the minimum wage back to 7.85 and the jobs will once again start to appear.

Lorraine
Guest

To bring overseas jobs back you would need to drop union wages and pensions down to common sense levels, too.

The_Patriot
Guest
Yes and No. Get rid of the graft and corruption in Unions. The dues would then be lower. Get rid of the garft and corruption in the Government and taxes would be lower so people wouldn’t need to make so much to survive. It is however not a perfect world and you cannot get rid of all the corruption. Unions in fact keep companies honest. There are some (very few) benefits to having unions. Without unions people would make very little. The reasons unions formed to begin with was because of unscrupulous business practices. There is a point where yes… Read more »
Emma Brown
Guest

Yep, if ovomit and the Congress would make it easier for companies to stay here, and get rid of all the ILLEGAL ALIENS who are willing to work for smaller wages, we might HAVE more of those companies here to hire more Americans!!

Philanthropussy
Guest

Keep on thinking that hon. Companies do that with or without gov approval. They do it to make money no matter what .

markinla
Guest

Yeah, the Wall Street people who never have to eat their losses like the rest of us. How lucky we all are to have them and how unwarranted it is to be mad at them.

Arthur Nickerson
Guest

My question is a simple one: If being a wealthy person is so bad in the eyes of Liberals, why are so many of them, including our president and his wife, multi-millionaires?

Lorraine
Guest

And they associate with the wealthy, narcissistic people in hollyweird all the time.

Philanthropussy
Guest

Who said being rich is evil? And Obama had a couple millipn on off his books. Not like Romey who was born into it.

like I CM
Guest

Who said being rich is evil???? where have you been? Please put your Blackberry away before you hurt your thumbs again

bluuplanet
Guest
I agree with this article, but we shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that there IS evil at the top. It’s not the people we typically identify as 1% though. The actual bastion of evil is more like .0000001%. They gladly reside within the 1% like a single weed hiding in plain sight in a field–like a single silverside fish swimming in a swarming school for protection. Incredibly, this small percentage of the population that are international bankers and money managers aren’t really driven by money. They’re well past that. They are in charge of printing the money. We’ve seen… Read more »
marilyn
Guest

As I tried to explain to a young man who resented the 1% and the ‘bosses’ in his life and wondered why he wasn’t successful , I told him, if every guy with a job, it doesn’t matter what it is, Flipping burgers or manager or what if you approach your job like you are going for ‘Most Valued Player’ you will do well and be successful in life.

Robert L. Moore
Guest

Well said Marilyn.

marilyn
Guest

Envy is one of the worst sins. It poisons everything good. All of this BS from people who live in their head. Heads filled with the poison of envy. The people you hold responsible for your failure in life have no effect on anything you do in your life. If they are greedy, pity them for they are trying to fill a hole in their life. Those filled with envy are not better than those filled with greed..

mrmike
Guest

And people in America on welfare are typically in the top 15% of the richest people on planet earth. But they are lied to by the government and believe they are “poor”. If you have indoor running water (non-drinkable) you are in the top 20%.

timzank
Guest

Amen to that Colonel.

Chef-Frankie
Guest
Holy Crap, … you hit it square on the head Allen and I too am a 1%er. My cousin the other day sent me list of countries ratings via FB on Employer verses Employee compensation, Were Japan was 11 to 1 and American at the bottom of this list was 475 to 1. I told her it is a lie and why does she think it is wrong to succeed ? Well no response is all I got. Please keep up the good fight your a perfect example of an American in the JFK way. Ask not what your country… Read more »
Richard StJohn
Guest
Employer compensation ratio in 1965 was 18 to 1. In 2000 it was over 400 to 1. Some CEO’s make over 1000 times what their employees do. the average employee at Starbucks earned a little more than 25k in 2012. CEO pulled 28.9 million. 1135 to 1 ratio. And that isn’t the top of the list by any means. Average worker at JC Penny mad almost 30K while the CEO bagged 53.3 million for a ratio of 1795 to 1. You might want to offer your cousin an apology. I’m sure that isn’t a problem for a one percenter to… Read more »
Pam
Guest

Again, you are right. Even for someone that has the talent, you have to have a break. It depends on a lot of factors besides just talent. Seen a lot of gifted and smart people that never climb to the top of that mountain and they tried. Hard work will not get you there without a lot of other factors falling into place.

Shuckluk
Guest
Although true in some cases, I believe the majority work hard for their breaks. There’s a fine line between an earned break, which I don’t consider to be a genuine break, and an unearned break. Some understand the concept of working for their breaks, talent or not. The talented ones who do understand this rise to the top. And if one thinks about it, that is exactly the way we want it. Society absolutely and fundamentally needs leaders. What and how they are remunerated is essentially irrelevant, but they must be the best. Less would be chaos. Those lacking the… Read more »
Pam
Guest

Yes our President is a prime example of your theory.

John Walker
Guest

I disagree with most of what Allen West writes about. That being said he nailed this one. The socialist mentality that for someone to succeed others must fail is destroying this country. Wealth is not a zero sum game. It is not a fixed pie where for someone to have more others must have less. Success should be cheered not denigrated.

mr j
Guest

Whose raising their kids to be mediocre? Lots and lots of people. I’m a teacher and there’s lots of lazy parenting going on.

Pam
Guest

No, those are the one that are not doing any parenting at all.

dave pitts
Guest

the question is did they have children to become parents, or get a fatter welfare check

teewop
Guest

Perfectly said and explained !!

Verity
Guest

Excellent. My thoughts exactly.

Richard StJohn
Guest
One-percenter has several different connotations in different parts of our society. I take issue with the implied belief that anyone can achieve the highest levels of success through hard work. Obviously hard work is the key to success and it cannot be overstated. But at the same time some people are simply not born with great intelligence or physical gifts. I am fairly smart, was a good athlete, but fell far below the lofty highest of achievers. i don’t feel the least bit bad about it either. For far more is involved. How many people in our society have the… Read more »
Reba
Guest

Very well said.

49_67_71_77
Guest

I have never seen these points expressed as well as you did. thanks

The_Patriot
Guest
I use to race sculls, at the time I was 39, I was never number one, but like you I was happy I did the absolute best I could do. That is all anyone can ask of you. You do the best you can for yourself day in and day out and you are a success. You may not be a 1%’er in monetary means or stature of life but you are a 1%’er because you gave it your all in everything you do. That’s what counts. Just because they are rich and have a God given talent does not… Read more »
Reba
Guest

Well said!

fedup
Guest

Very well said, Mr. West….and as a Proud Canadian, agree 100%. We MUST keep the Socialists out of Government in Canada and the U.S.A…..are you listening Americans-Canadians? You should be…..

Pam
Guest
@ Richard StJohn That pretty much sums it up. I have seen talented singers that never make stars because they didn’t find that one song or one who found one song but never again. I have my self seen people promoted over me because they we male and I was twice as capable. That’s just life. I have never been rich but I have been broke and raising twin daughters by myself and wondering how I was going to keep a roof over our heads and feed and clothe them. But I worked hard and I am proud of my… Read more »
tullmargaret
Guest

they pulled that number out of their ass
!!!