A Chicago-based magazine has just released the recording of a telephone conference call last June in which Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, speaking to a group of small business owners organized by the National Federation of Independent Businesses, urges employers to “make it very clear to your employees what you believe is in the best interest of your enterprise, and therefore their job and their future, in the upcoming elections.”

The practice is perfectly legal, and employers should utilize it to influence the vote of their workers, Mr. Romney said. The GOP candidate presumably does not feel that this is another case of the intimidation of hourly-wage or salaried employees by their bosses.

Mr. Romney’s remarks came at the end of a conference call in which he assailed President Obama’s policies as being not good for business, and Mr. Obama himself as being anti-business. “And whether you agree with me or you agree with President Obama, or whatever your political view, I hope—I hope you pass those along to your employees,” he told the business owners. Mr. Romney said he believes that what employers tell their employees “will figure into their election decision, their voting decision…”

The recording of the conference call was reportedly published June 17 by In These Times, the Chicago magazine, and re-printed by online outlets, including The Huffington Post and ThinkProgress, according to a report on June 18 by The Slatest, a widely-read online news source. That story may be accessed here.

Readers of The Global Conversion will recall that we pointed here to a widely circulated story a few days ago about the owner of a Florida time-share company who apparently took Romney’s advice, telling his estimated  7,000 employees in a memo from the front office to them all that if Mr. Obama was re-elected and then raised taxes on the super-rich as he had promised, he did not see how he could keep his business operating at its present level and that he would probably have to lay off some employees.

The man, who a few years ago listed his net worth at over a billion dollars, was featured on a recent television program as now attempting to build the Biggest House in America, a 90,000-square-foot mansion depicted here.

What all of this raises in terms of The New Spirituality is the perennial question: What, if anything, can Those Who Have More reasonably be asked to share with Those Who Have Less? Mr. Romney has already announced the income tax rate he pays is a fraction over 14%—which is much less than the rate that most Americans of 1/100th of his income pay. Warren Buffet, the multi-billionaire, likewise announced a few months ago that he pays a tax rate that is less than his secretary’s. Mr. Buffet said that this is patently unfair. Mr. Romney has indicted that there is nothing wrong with this.

And you say…?

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