Bernie Marcus: Bernie Sanders is the enemy of every entrepreneur


NEIL: HOME DEPOT OPENED THE ITS FIRST DOOR 40 YEARS AGO. THINK OF WHAT WAS GOING ON THEN. A RECESSION AND LONG GAS LINES. KEN LANGONE JOINING US EXCLUSIVELY TO REFLECT ON THAT SAYING THEY WERE DIFFERENT TIMES. MIDDLE OF A RECESSION, LONG GAS LINES AGAIN.>>BAD TIMES. BAD TIMES.>>NEIL, WE COULDN’T GET A BANKER TO GIVE US A LINE OF CREDIT. WE HAD NO MONEY. KEN RAISED TWO MILLION DOLLARS. WE WERE OPENING FOUR STARS FOR TWO MILLION DOLLARS. WHICH CAN’T BE DONE. WE HAD NO MONEY. NO BANK IN ATLANTA WOULD GIVE US MONEY. KENNY’S FRIEND ALL OVER IN CHICAGO, IN FACT ONE MEMBER OF THE BOARD, HIS FATHER WAS THE BIGGEST BANKER IN DALLAS.>>BARRY COX.>>HIS FATHER WAS AN INVESTOR. WOULDN’T GIVE US A LOAN. NEIL: WHAT DIDN’T THEY LIKE BIT?>>NO CREDIT. WE HAD AN IDEA. ALL WE HAD. THE CONCEPT DIDN’T MAKE SENSE. WE GOT INVESTORS TO GIVE US LETTERS OF CREDIT WE WERE ABLE TO USE TO GO TO BERNIE’S FRIEND RUTH FLEMING AT SECURITY PACIFIC BANK. WE TOOK THE LCs, GOT A 3 MILLION-DOLLAR LINE OF CREDIT. NEIL: YOU OPENED UP STORES. YOU WERE HANDING OUT DOLLAR BILLS TO GET THEM TO COME IN.>>YEAH. NEIL: DID THAT BRING MUCH TRAFFIC?>>NO BECAUSE THEY LEFT THE AIR OUT OF THE PAPER. IF ANYTHING COULD GO WRONG, IT WENT WRONG. IT WAS AJC, A DOUBLE TRUCK, DOUBLE PAINED, THEY LEFT IT OUT. NEIL: YOU LOOKED LIKE A FOOL OUT THERE?>>WE WENT OUT ON THE HIGHWAY TO HAND MONEY OUT. PEOPLE DIDN’T EVEN KNOW WHO WE WERE. SO, BUT I CALLED THE, THE PUBLISHER OF THE PAPER AND I DIDN’T SCREAM AT HIM. I SAID, YOU JUST PUT A KNIFE THROUGH MY HEART. NEIL:>>THE GUY SAID WHY? YOU LEFT THE AD OUT. FOR THAT HE GAVE US BACK OF THE FIRST PAGE FOR THREE YEARS. YOU COULDN’T BUY. NEIL: THAT IS GOLD. YOU WOULD BE RELENTLESS, POLICE PEOPLE LEAVING HOME DEPOT, IF THEY DIDN’T ANYTHING, YOU WANT TO KNOW WHAT WAS GOING ON?>>I USED TO SPEND MY TIME OUTSIDE THE STORE, THEY WOULD LEAVE WHAT DIDN’T YOU FIND. YOU DIDN’T HAVE SUCH AND SUCH. GIVE ME YOUR ADDRESS AND I WILL HAVE IT TOMORROW OR TONIGHT. BUY IT AT COMPETITOR, KNOCK THE PRICE DOWN BY A THIRD, MAKE SURE THE STORE HAD IT AT THAT PRICE. NEIL: INCREDIBLE.>>WHEN YOU START A BUSINESS, THIS HOME DEPOT IS PROBABLY THE POSTER-CHILD FOR CAPITALISM. WHEN I HEARD HERE BERNIE SANDERS TALKING ABOUT SOCIALIZE, THIS COULD NEVER HAPPEN IN A SOCIALIZED — NEVER HAPPEN. NEIL: BUT IT HAPPENED IN A PRETTY DIFFICULT ECONOMIC PERIOD.>>INTEREST RATES WERE 21%. NEIL: RIGHT.>>AND WORSE. NEIL: WHY DID YOU CHOOSE THEN TO DO THIS?>>BECAUSE I GOT FIRED. NEIL: I UNDERSTAND. HE DIDN’T CHOOSE T WAS FATE. WE GOT FIRED.>>WE DIDN’T KNOW JIMMY CARTER WOULD BE IN THE WHITE HOUSE. NEIL: IF YOU KNEW WHAT YOU WERE DEALING WITH IN THE ENVIRONMENT, DID YOU EVER SAY, MAYBE WE HAVE TO POSTPONE THIS UNTIL WE’RE OUT OF THE RECESSION?>>NO, NEVER, NEVER. PEOPLE NEEDED PRODUCT. PEOPLE STILL HAD THE BUILD HOUSES. PEOPLE STILL HAD TO FIX THINGS. WHAT WE STARTED TO THE DO IT YOURSELF CRAZE IN AMERICA. IN AMERICA. THAT WAS A BIG DEAL. NEIL: BUT DID YOU KNOW THAT WAS COMING AT THE TIME.>>IT WAS SOMETHING ELSE. BECAUSE WHERE THE WORLD WAS. WE WERE ABLE TO GET LEASES FROM JCPENNEY WHICH WAS HERE ON SIXTH AVENUE RIGHT UP THE STREET, WE WERE ABLE TO GET LEASES ON FOUR STORES IN ATLANTA. NEIL: TREASURE ISLAND WAS ONE OF THEM.>>THEY WERE SHUTTING THEM. THEY WERE SHUTTING FOUR TREASURE ISLANDS. PART OF THE DEAL WAS, YOU REMEMBER THIS? WE FAV, WE WERE GOING TO GIVE JCPENNEY WARRANTS AS PART OF THE RENT. NEIL: WOW.>>FOR 10% OF THE COMPANY. NOW TWO DAYS BEFORE THE CLOSING I’M CALLING THEM, HEY, WE HAVE PAPER WARRANTS. THEY’RE A NUISANCE. WE DON’T WANT THEM. KEEP THEM.>>SECURITY PACIFIC BAKE ALSO DIDN’T TAKE ANY WARRANTS. NEIL: IDIOTIC MOVES.>>IT WASN’T IDIOTIC. YOU HAVE TO UNDERSTAND AT THE TIME, IF YOU LOOKED AT IT, YOU KNEW THE BUSINESS, YOU WOULD SAY THIS IS A FAILURE. THERE IS NO WAY THEY COULD SUCCEED. HOW DO YOU SELL PRODUCT AT A THIRD LESS THAN EVERYBODY ELSE? HOW DO YOU HAVE QUALIFIED PEOPLE ON THE FLOOR OF THE STORE. HOW DO YOU HAVE INVENTORY THAT IS FIVE TIMES WHAT EVERYBODY ELSE HAS. NEIL: HOW DID YOU DO THAT? THERE WERE BIGGEST COMPETITORS.>>VOLUME. VOLUME. NEIL: YOU DIDN’T HAVE VOLUME.>>BUT WHICH EXPECTED IT. NEIL: IN THE BEGINNING YOU HAD A LOT OF EMPTY BOXES, ON THE SHELVES.>>BUT THAT WAS INVENTORY. WE HAD NO COMPETITORS REALLY. NEIL: I THINK THEY WERE IGNORING YOU.>>THEY DIDN’T THINK IT WOULD WORK. SEARS ROEBUCK WAS THE COMPETITOR. THEY WERE THE BIGGEST COMPETITOR. I USED TO FOLLOW THEM ON RETAIL ANALYSTS ON WALL STREET. I WOULD GET UP AND I WOULD SAY, LOOK WE’RE A A GNAT ON THEIR REAR ENDS, JUST IGNORE US. THEY REALLY DID. NEIL: EVERY VISIONARY COMPANY STARTS OUT THAT WAY.>>WE OFFERED KROGER 10% OF THE COMPANY FOR $2 MILLION WE HAD GOTTEN STARTED. THEY CAME BACK AND SAID, YOU CAN’T HAVE LOW PRICES, HIGH SERVICE AND WIDE ASSORTMENT, STILL MAKE MONEY. THAT WAS IT. THEY WALKED AWAY. THEY DIDN’T DO THE DEAL. THAT WAS THEIR REASON. MICROSOFT WAS THE SAME WAY. PEOPLE DIDN’T BELIEVE. NEIL: ABSOLUTELY.>>THEY COULD HAVE OWNED THE COMPANY, IBM. THEY DIDN’T. THEY GAVE THEM THE TECHNOLOGY. WE HAD THE SAME THING. NEIL: IF YOU WERE STARTING IN ENVIRONMENT LIKE WE ARE TODAY, MUCH LOWER TAXES, MUCH MORE STABLE ECONOMIC ENVIRONMENT, WHAT DO YOU THINK?>>FIRST OF ALL IT WOULD BE VERY DIFFICULT TODAY. NEIL: YEAH.>>THE GOVERNMENT IS REALLY WORKING AGAINST YOU. ONE OF THE THINGS KENNY AND I WERE TALKING ABOUT IN THE CAR COMING UP HERE, WHEN WE, BEFORE WE WENT PUBLIC, I MADE A COMMITMENT TO PEOPLE THAT I HIRED. I SAID LOOK, IF WE’RE SUCCESSFUL, WE HAVE A PUBLIC OFFERING, EVERY SINGLE PERSON WORKING HERE WILL GET STOCK IN THE COMPANY. AND ARTHUR AND I LIMITED OUR SALARIES. NEIL: RIGHT.>>WE TOOK NO OPTIONS. WE’RE THE ONLY COMPANY I KNOW OF, NO OPTIONS. WE NEVER TOOK AN OPTION, EVER, EVER. I COULD BE AS RICH AS WARREN BUFFETT TODAY. BUT I WOULD RATHER HAVE EVERY ASSISTANT MANAGER, EVERY MANAGER, SECRETARIES — NEIL: YOU NEVER PAID MINIMUM WAYNE.>>NEVER ONCE PAID A MINIMUM WAGE.>>NEVER MINIMUM WAGE. BUT EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM, LOOK WE HAD A GREAT STORY TODAY, THERE WAS A GUY WORKING FOR US 36 YEARS. HE SPOKE TO GREG MINEAR. I’M RETIRING. HE SAID, WHY ARE YOU RETIRING? THE TRUTH OF THE MATTER MY DIVIDENDS ARE WORTH MORE THAN MY SALARY. MAKING MORE MONEY ON DIVIDENDS THAN MY SALARY. NEIL: YOU MADE A LOT OF MILLIONAIRES.>>BY THE WAY THE CORNERSTONE OF OUR BELIEF FROM DAY ONE WAS PEOPLE IN THE STORE. WE ALWAYS BELIEVED IF THIS WAS GOING TO WORK, WE HAD TO GET THE RIGHT PEOPLE, MOTIVATE THEM, AFTER WE GOT THEM, WE HAD TO RESPECT THEM. AND WE DO.>>AND YOU DO. REASON WHY I MENTIONED IT, YOU’RE BOTH BILLIONAIRES. YOU HAVE FREIGHT SUCCESS. THERE IS THE PUSH FROM THE BILLIONAIRE’S CLUB. HEARD A GROUP WANTS HIGHER TAXES, GEORGE SOROS, CHRIS HUGHES, FACEBOOK COFOUNDER, HOST OF OTHERS. DESCENDANTS OF FAMILY EMPIRES, ABIGAIL DISNEY, PRITZKER, THEY SAY TAX US MORE. WHAT DO YOU THINK OF THAT.>>WELL THEY TRUST THE GOVERNMENT MORE THAN I DO. NEIL: RIGHT.>>I CAN’T TELL YOU HOW MUCH MONEY WE’VE GIVEN AWAY. MY FOUNDATION ACTUALLY HAS GIVEN AWAY OVER $2 BILLION. I WOULD RATHER GIVE IT AWAY THAN HAVE SOME CONGRESSMAN GIVE IT AWAY. WE BUILT HOSPITALS. WE GUILT THE GEORGIA AQUARIUM WHICH YOU HAPPENED TO BE AT. NEIL: BEAUTIFUL.>>THE CARDIAC UNITS, STROKE UNITS. NEIL: LANGONE MEDICAL CENTER.>>NYU. WE DO BETTER WITH OUR MONEY THAN THE GOVERNMENT. WHY WOULD I WANT THE GOVERNMENT TO HAVE IT? ANYTHING THEY TOUCH — NEIL: DO YOU GET ANNOYED, BIG OL’ TARGETS, NOT SPECIFICALLY ON YOU, THE RICH, ALL THESE DEMOCRATIC CANDIDATES, TO A MAN OR WOMEN THEY SINGLE OUT NICE LIKE YOU, THIS IS WHAT HAPPENED TO CAPITALISM.>>WAIT A MINUTE. WHAT HAS HAPPENED TO CALL — CAPITALISM. TWO, THREE, FOUR OF US, HUMBLE ORIGINS. EVERYONE OF THE FOUR OF US. HIS FATHER WAS A PLUMBER. ENORMOUSLY SUCCESSFUL FINANCIALLY. LOOK WHAT WE’VE DONE. BUT I HAVE A DIFFERENT POINT. I HAVE NO TROUBLE PAYING MORE TAXES PROVIDED IT IS USED TO REDEEM THE FUTURES OF THE YOUNG PEOPLE TODAY. WHAT THE HELL AM I DOING? WHAT IS BERNIE DOING GETTING SOCIAL SECURITY? WE SHOULDN’T GET A CHECK. FIX IT. MAKE THAT HAPPEN. NEIL: BUT IT DOESN’T HAPPEN?>>WHY? BECAUSE THEY HAVEN’T GOT THE GUTS IN WASHINGTON. NEIL: BERNIE SANDERS IS OUT TODAY WITH A PLAN THAT WILL TAX WALL STREET TRADES, PENNIES ON THE DOLLAR, BUT IT’S A START TO PAY FOR AMONG OTHER THINGS, COLLEGE DEBT, FREE COLLEGE DOWN THE ROAD.>>DON’T BRING UP BERNIE SANDERS. THAT IS A RED FLAG IN FRONT OF ME. HE IS THE ENEMY OF EVERY ENTREPRENEUR THAT WILL BE BORN IN THIS COUNTRY AND BEEN BORN IN PAST. NEIL: HE REPRESENTS HALF THE CANDIDATES VIEWS.>>WE DON’T HAVE, OUR KIDS TODAY, DON’T LEARN WESTERN CIVILIZATION. THEY DON’T LEARN HISTORY. HISTORY REPEATS ITSELF. YOU SEE THINGS HAPPENING OVER AND OVER AGAIN. NEIL: IF HE BECAME PRESIDENT WHAT WOULD YOU GUYS DO?>>MOVE TO AUSTRALIA.>>WHAT COULD HE DO? HE CAN’T DO ANYTHING TO US. HE WILL AFFECT MY GRANDCHILDREN. LET ME BRING UP ONE THING. NEIL: SURE.>>BERNIE SANDERS TALKS ABOUT SOCIALIZED MEDICINE. MY FOUNDATION NOW IS WORKING ON ONE ISSUE, THAT IS TAKING CARE OF THESE VETERANS, KIDS WHO FOUGHT IN AFGHANISTAN, IRAQ. YOU KNOW THAT 20 A DAY COMMIT SUICIDE. 20 EVERY SINGLE DAY. WHAT IS BERNIE SANDERS DOING ABOUT THAT? WHY DOESN’T HE SHUT IS MOUTH AND DO SOMETHING ABOUT THESE KIDS? THEY GO TO THE VETERANS ADMINISTRATION. THEY CAN’T TAKE CARE OF IT. THE PROOF IN THE PUDDING IS, 20 A DAY ARE COMMITTING SUICIDE. IF IT WAS MEASELS, THE CDC, THE WORLD WOULD BE IN AN UPROAR BUT IT IS KIDS THAT PUT THEIR LIVES ON THE LINE, THAT ARE TREATED SO BADLY, I DIDN’T HEAR ONE SINGLE CANDIDATE TALK ABOUT IT. BY THE WAY, TRUMP IS FULLY SUPPORTIVE OF THIS. HE HAS DONE SOME THINGS THAT COULD FIRE PEOPLE, THAT HAVE DONE THE WRONG THING AT THE VETERANS ADMINISTRATION. THE VETERANS ADMINISTRATION IS WHAT MEDICAL CARE IS GOING TO BE LIKE IN THE NIGHT IF BERNIE SANDERS IS ELECTED. NEIL: YOU MENTIONED THE PRESIDENT. LET ME GET YOUR TAKE. THE PRESIDENT SAID IF I’M NOT REELECTED EXPECT A MARKET CRASH, WHAT DID YOU THINK OF THAT?>>I DON’T KNOW ABOUT THAT BUT LET ME GO BACK TO BERNIE SANDERS. BELIEVE IT OR NOT CHAVEZ IN VENEZUELA CAME INTO POWER THROUGH DEMOCRATIC PROCESS. IF THE PEOPLE IN AMERICA TODAY, THE FELLOWS WITH THE HARD HATS ON, IF THEY WANT TO KNOW WHAT THE FUTURE HOLDS FOR THEM FOLLOWING BERNIE SANDERS, GO TO CUBA, GO TO VENEZUELA, GO TO RUSSIA, GO TO EASTERN EUROPE. GUESS WHAT? IT DOESN’T WORK. IT NEVER WORKED. AVERAGE VENEZUELAN LAST YEAR LOST 34 POUNDS. THERE IS NO FOOD DOWN THERE. NEIL: LOOK THEY HAD A LOT OF RICHES TO BEGIN WITH.>>ONE OF THE WEALTHIEST COUNTRY IN THE SOUTHERN HEMISPHERE. IT WAS SITTING ON A HUGE POOL OF OIL. NEIL: LATEST EXAMPLE. BUT, DONALD TRUMP HAS SAID, THESE ARE THE CAST OF CHARACTERS THAT THEY ARE REPLACING, THIS IS WHAT YOU HAVE TO LOOK FORWARD TO. HE ALSO SAID WALL STREET WOULD BE SO STUNNED BY THE ALTERNATIVE, THAT IT WOULD CRASH.>>I HAVE LEARNED AFTER 60 SOMETHING YEARS IN THE BUSINESS. DON’T GUESS THE MARKET. MARKET WILL DO WHAT IT WANTS TO DO. I HOPE TO GOD FOR SAKE OF ALL OF US, THAT TRUMP IS WRONG. WHEN WE CHANGE STRUCTURE OF NATION, THAT IS RISKY GAME. THERE IS A GOOD SHOT WE HAVE SEVERE ECONOMIC DOWNTURN IF AMERICAN PEOPLE GO IN THAT DIRECTION. THAT IS WHAT HAPPENED IN

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