Book Reviews

“No Thank You, Mr. President” makes the news! Spotlight with Gerry Dick on Inside Indiana business promoting Elkhart’s ability to stand strong in a weak economy. Listen and share your feedback! small logoProvocative New Book Offers Advice Michigan Businesses Can Benefit From

POSTED ON 10/5/2010 by Tony Rubleski

The title of John Cohoat’s book, No Thank You Mr. President, just by itself got my attention when I was perusing business book titles a couple of months ago. With a huge mid-term election just around the corner and the economy continuing to be the elephant in the room, this page turner is packed with a different economic message: staying tough, no whining allowed!

The book’s foreword is written by legendary football coach Lou Holtz, and has additional commentary and bonus commentary from marketing legend Dan Kennedy, whose track record of working with successful small businesses is astounding during his 30 plus year career in business.

Read the rest of Tony’s review on

Glenn Beck's Booklist small logoNo Thank You, Mr. President! Glenn Beck shares the story…

POSTED ON 10/4/2010

On September 18th Glenn Beck was at The Pursuit sponsored by the Michiana 9/12 Coalition in Angola, IN. While there he shared the brief story of the people in town who stood up against handouts from the government and decided to instead put in more time and effort to do what is right in helping their small town survive the economic disaster. This incredible story can be found in a book called No Thank You, Mr. President: How Real Businesses From Elkhart County, Indiana Stood Up to Fight and Thrive on Their Own in Spite of the Economic Turmoil by author John S. Cohoat.

You can read the rest of this review on Glenn Beck’s Book list. You can also watch Glenn’s commentary on this book.

Business and Media Research CenterBook Highlights Economic Recovery Without Government Help

‘No Thank You, Mr. President’: Elkhart County not a victim, but an example of triumph
By Kyle Gillis Business & Media Institute

POSTED ON 6/21/2010 11:10:57 AM

Tough times don’t last; tough people do.

That’s the theme of author John S. Cohoat’s new book “No Thank You, Mr. President,” which tells the story of 10 private companies in Elkhart County, Ind., that made their own way to economic recovery without government handouts.

“My hope is that these stories provide some inspiration for you or make you remember why our capitalist economic policies and truly American way of life is the answer,” Cohoat wrote in his first chapter, titled ‘Why This Book? 

Why Now?’

Cohoat characterized Elkhart County, in the northern part of the state near South Bend, as a hard-nosed area able to take care of itself. His portrayal stands in contract to the national media’s portrayal of the county as the “poster child for all that is bad with our economy.”

In 2009, President Obama visited Elkhart County to promote his “stimulus” 

legislation. All the networks used his visit to supplement their infomercial for the $787 spending plan. NBC’s Chuck Todd went so far as to claim that Obama’s and Elkhart’s fates were intertwined when Obama returned to the county in August 2009.

“Of all the hard-hit places, Elkhart, Indiana, is the barometer by which President Obama believes he will be and should be judged on his ability to turn around the economy,” Todd said. kept a running blog called “The Elkhart Project” that ran from March 2009 until March 2010 chronicling the “tales of struggle and recovery from the epicenter of America’s economic meltdown.” The blog presents Elkhart as a victim in need of a government savior.

Cohoat’s book, however, focused on the confidence and entrepreneurial spirit of the residents and workers of Elkhart County. He directly refuted the “victim” label in the chapter titled “Victims Need Not Apply,” 

which profiled Larry Shank of AE Techron Inc.

“Larry’s attitude is that government officials often see their role as finding a way to fix problems for its people,” Cohoat wrote, “but Larry says Elkhart County’s message is, ‘just get out of our way, and we’ll find a solution.’”

Compare that with Mike Stuckey’s February 2010 story, ‘A city’s mixed feelings about Obama’s impact.’ The “Elkhart Project” post didn’t cite opposition to the stimulus until 22 paragraphs into the story and wrote it off as conservative, Glenn Beck-inspired resistance.

“’I honestly think if the government would just get out of the way and let us go back to work, it would be better,’ said Graber, a founding board member of the Michiana 9-12 Project, a group inspired by conservative TV and radio host Glenn Beck that stresses family and religious values over government solutions,” Stuckey wrote.

Rather than underreporting stimulus costs or championing further intervention, as many in the media have done, Cohoat’s book provides a picture of America’s ability to recover by working hard and letting the free market work its way out of the recession. Additionally, Cohoat broke the media trick of exclusively interviewing stimulus supporters and discovered business owners who not only oppose the stimulus but are actually succeeding without its help.

3 Responses to “Book Reviews”

  1. Joe Perino says:

    John, I read about your book in the recent issue of ND magazine and was moved to write and tell you how right you are… you’re a credit to Elkhart and its citizens. The economy will improve when government plays the referee role and doesn’t take over the game … getting big government out of the way to let people do what they do best will put our country back on the right track.

    All the best .. your old classmate – Howard Hall, Class of 1976


  2. John says:

    Very tardy in my response. Thanks for the comments. Writing the book has been an interesting experience. We’ll see if the government starts to get the message. The problems are huge.
    You should come back to the Reunion this summer! I think Rich Zaweski will be there. Just saw Neil Gillespie a few weeks ago.
    Give me a call.

  3. John says:


    I want to take the opportunity to Thank You! for 2 things:

    1. Writing your book

    2. Giving me a copy.

    It is really great John! I really can apply it to my business. I relate to what Dan talked about in the end with fighting to keep my business going. The page on cash flow was really helpful and also about not waiting till my business was fixed before expanding. I am at that point now and it almost gave me a push to go further regardless of outside circumstances.


    Jeff Japkowski
    Ski Construction Company LLC

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