Cain: Not rich? No job? Blame yourself
October 5th, 2011
04:33 PM ET
10 years ago

Cain: Not rich? No job? Blame yourself

(CNN) – If you're dissatisfied with the economy, or unemployed, Herman Cain thinks you should take a long, hard look in the mirror.

In an interview with the Wall Street Journal posted Wednesday, the up-and-coming GOP 2012 contender and former CEO of Godfather's Pizza summed up his bewilderment about recent demonstrations on Wall Street.

"Don't blame Wall Street," Cain said. "Don't blame the big banks. If you don't have a job and you're not rich, blame yourself."

The conservative radio talk show host described the protests as "planned and orchestrated to distract from the failed policies of the Obama administration, though he admitted he didn't "have the facts to back this up."

Demonstrators have gathered to protest big banks during the "Occupy Wall Street" movement, but their grievances don't end with the economy. The protesters, mainly youth in their twenties, have addressed issues from police brutality to union busting, although they are also upset with the war in Afghanistan, the environment, and the state of the world in general.

The "Occupy Wall Street" movement has also drawn support from unions.

But for Cain, the demonstrations simply amount to "anti-capitalism."

Allowing the banks had a "big part" in the 2008 economic crisis, the candidate, who's known for his bombast and has been rising in national polls pointed out, "We're in 2011, okay?"

"When I was growing up I was blessed to have had parents. That didn't teach me to be jealous of anybody and didn't teach me to be jealous of somebody," Cain explained.

"It is not a person's fault because they succeeded. It is a person's fault if they failed. And so this is why I don't understand these demonstrations and what is it that they're looking for."

Cain spokesman JD Gordon declined to add a comment on the candidate's interview.

Also see:

State of the Race without Christie

Romney picks up new backers

Perry brings in $17 million in third fundraising quarter

Filed under: 2012 • Economy • Herman Cain • Jobs • Wall Street
soundoff (328 Responses)
  1. Lisa P

    What if I don't have a job and I *am* rich? As a "job creator" I get to pay taxes on my "capital gains" at half the rate that those suckers who have to work for me for a living, making more money for me!, have to pay on the paltry amount they earn as wages (note to self: must cut wages so workers can be taxed less)! Isn't life sweet! I can't imagine why anyone would object to this wonderful arrangement!

    October 5, 2011 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  2. DB

    If this does not cause voters to ensure Cain's defeat, they deserve Cain's inhumanity. Good thing about a democracy is that you get exactly what you deserve. USA certainly deserves people like Cain, Palin, Bachman, Perry, Obama, Pelosi, ... as "leaders"!!!

    October 5, 2011 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  3. Jimbo

    He's probaly correct but nobody wants to hear that, he should have kept his mouth shut.

    October 5, 2011 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  4. logic in LA

    Sounds like a true Republican. That must be a tan he's sporting because he sounds like an old white guy these days. And I'm sure Godfather Pizza under his reign paid 100,000.00 a year to all of it's employees so they could attain the wealth he is talking about.
    He has done well for himself but its the meek that will inherit the earth.

    October 5, 2011 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  5. joesnopy

    Well Cain and the Baby Boomers are the problem. They sold the young for self. Well most of the kids were not born when the baby boomers started selling your America to China and India. Well the middleclass in China is happy.

    October 5, 2011 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  6. GOP = Greed Over People


    It is refreshing to finally see a member of the GOP come right out and say they hate poor people. No trying to dismantle programs that help them, just state up front you do not deserve help.

    Guess this white boy has been brainwashed too!

    Sorry, Cain, but you cannot be President to just the rich and successful.

    October 5, 2011 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  7. lizzzzz

    I don't know but about him being callous, although I do know many people on welfare and they are very happy. They do not want to work, they want to sit home and get their checks in the mail, food stamps, etc. There are many people who do not want to work but want be supported, it has become a way of life for many. I thought it was just supposed to be a helping hand. These are the people who vote democrat because they don't want to lose their benefits.

    October 5, 2011 07:07 pm at 7:07 pm |
  8. Liz

    so when i was laid off because of the economic downturn in sacramento; that was MY fault?

    wow. if he's elected then our country deserves to go down the tubes.

    October 5, 2011 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  9. Liz the First

    Don't have a job because the CEOs outsourced all the jobs overseas? the factories went to robots instead of people? because the rich bankers crashed the economy with their mind-boggling greed? tough cookies according to this rich idiot. granted, there are some folks holding out for the perfect job, but not many. most unemployed will take anything that will feed their families. why doesn't mr. 'let them eat cake' pressure his fellow big businessmen to start hiring? oh, can't do that, that would improve the economy and make Obama look good. can't have that. crushing poverty and double-digit unemployment? that's ok, just don't do anything to make Obama look good. this, folks, is TREASON!!!!!!!! purposely hurting the country to regain political power? what else would a sane person call it??????????

    October 5, 2011 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  10. Glenn Roundy

    Personally i will not work. Why Should I So you can later give my job to some other country for less money
    And if i break my back for you what are you going to do for me. Let me tell ya somthin i have noticed in the Workplace.
    The more work i do for you the less you appreciate and the more you will try and take advantage of the fact That I
    Put food on your Plate By the taxes I have paid and the sweat i have shed so you can point a finger and pay a man
    or woman next to nothing to do a job you yourself are unwilling to do and to robita you are correct we as
    Americans Have come to expect somthing for nothin amd then when you do work for it you get paid next to nothing
    because your hard work is paying for your bosses million dollar home jet cars a waste.
    This is our fault becuase until we wage war on the greedy wealthy you the person who works hard and sweats
    the most will continually be taken advantage of

    October 5, 2011 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  11. Mike Dallas

    "though he admitted he didn't "have the facts to back this up."

    My parents raised me and taught me that is called a lie, and is bearing false witness against thy neighbor.

    October 5, 2011 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  12. Sunnysmom

    We need to do more than just protest on Wall Street..we need to stop buying as many of their products as we can. Unfortunately, due to concentration of power by large multi-nationals, it's difficult but certainly not impossible. Buy local and American made products only.

    October 5, 2011 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  13. Former Republican, now an Independent

    It's not hard to see through a guy who is in the pocket of the people on Wall Street now is it?

    October 5, 2011 07:17 pm at 7:17 pm |
  14. d

    Then why does he keep blaming the President for the state of the economy? According to Mr. Cain, couldn't anybody who wanted a job just go and get one? Seems like Obama's out of the equation entirely.

    October 5, 2011 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  15. Mah

    This is just extremely offensive.

    October 5, 2011 07:24 pm at 7:24 pm |
  16. Sophie

    I'm no prude, but this saying holds true through the ages:

    "24Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” Matthew 19:23-24"

    A study found Republican men to be the happiest in the US – explained by the fact that they have no conscience or feel any responsibility toward their fellow man!

    October 5, 2011 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  17. Dennis1020

    I'm a lifelong moderate Democrat, early 60s, and I have to agree that many people do need to look in the mirror for an answer of why they are unemployed. Many lack the education to compete in today's job market, many simply do not have a good presence or appearance for looking for a job, many are too incompetent and/or irresponsible to hold a job, and too many say if they can't make $20/hour they're not taking a job. I know several people, mostly younger, who are content to collect unemployment and are making absolutely no attempt to find employment. I do have great compassion and sympathy for the honest, hard-working people who have lost their jobs–and there are many–but absolutely no sympathy for those in the categories above.

    October 5, 2011 07:27 pm at 7:27 pm |
  18. moi

    Absolute megalomaniac with no desire to empathize with the population's majority. I do not need an ignorant, egotistical lecture from one successful man on the sufferting of my entire family. If he gets elected, he may put the economy back on track- but ON THE SAME OLD TRACK is not what the millenials are about. We need ethical economy, distributive justice and corporate funds out of government so we can elect someone that won't fund a new bubble for the next 2008. This is 2011, ok?! And we are still not over the devastation a few men caused the globe with their greed and cold blooded investments due to a lack of oversite. This man will not only lose my vote, but has become my worst nightmare.

    October 5, 2011 07:27 pm at 7:27 pm |
  19. rick

    So, I retired from the Army last March after 21 years of service. I applied for jobs daily for 10 months before I got a Part Time job. And this is my fault somehow. Get a reality check buddy. I didn't qualify for unemployment because my ex-wife gets half of my retirement by law and another 600 a month in child support. Left me with the house knowing I was unemployed, so of course foreclosure was imminent. Car got repossed. Do not qualify for food stamps because my retirement is in my name even though the majority of it goes to my ex. So, my grocery shopping is limited to the local food bank. Again! Get a grip dude!

    October 5, 2011 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  20. "The GOP biggest deception is getting the Poor and Middle class to believe they are out to help them"

    LOL...he is DONE!!! I often wonder where is all that good Christian compassion the GOP is always touting? He don't get it, that folks are protesting because most of Wall Street is what cause the problem due to GREED!!!

    October 5, 2011 07:29 pm at 7:29 pm |
  21. W. Buffeet

    This man would make a WONDERFUL President.

    October 5, 2011 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  22. Mark

    Why are we still playing the blame game? Aside from a few unscrupulous individuals or bad investments, most of our failures are our own.

    October 5, 2011 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  23. Mack

    Too all jailed criminals who committed crimes in 2008, just invoke the "Cain defense". Just explain to your jailer that your crimes were sooo 2008, and to just get over it. Then close with the zinger and just remind them that whatever you may have done it was ultimately the fault of the victim. No harm, no foul right? Genius Mr Cain!

    October 5, 2011 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  24. FactChecker

    Yes. Because human nature changed suddenly two years ago. Or was it because the massive mortgage fraud bubble burst and person wealth in the U.S. lost $11 Trillion in about 1 year? Cain, you are a child with child-like beliefs.

    October 5, 2011 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  25. D. Gerth

    Mr. Cain is simplistic in his views, I cannot believe he gets any airtime.

    October 5, 2011 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
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