In response to the release of yet more terrible jobless claims numbers this AM, President Obama renewed his call to lower taxes on small business and to ease the small business credit crunch. The legislation, which promises to lower certain taxes on small business and to increase federal funding of loans to small businesses through various means, is "stuck" in Congress. Mr. Obama blamed the Republicans for "blocking" the bill: "'There will be plenty of time between now and November to play politics,' Obama said. 'Let’s put aside the partisanship for a while and work together.'”
I think this is rich, personally. We run a small business and I know what it feels like to be a small business in the Obama-cized children's product market. We are facing skyrocketing costs nicely matched with soft revenues and mounting taxes (funded by the company, too). Cost increases include $300K in new medical plan expenses to accommodate the terms of the Obamacare initiative, plus astronomical all-in costs for increased safety testing under the new CPSIA rules and related manias. The increased testing has yet to reveal any useful information of identify any health threat that constitutes a human safety risk - so all that money is wasted.
These costs have a common link - they are both a result of increasing regulation. I know, I know, Mr. Obama has lectured us that we really need all these new regulations. Well, I don't agree, but in any event, we see these regulations as major impediments in our business. These high costs affect our cash flow and our business outlook - to the bad. Do the Democrats think we maintain our sunny disposition when we face a shaky market lacking confidence (soft revenues), higher costs (a lot higher) and mounting cash needs from higher taxes and other federal regulatory expenses? This is rather a recipe for managers who want to hide until the storm passes. Who will spend money on new investment now? While we are not cutting our product development efforts, we haven't bought new equipment, fixtures or additional office/warehouse space in several years now. And we have no plans to do so. Welcome to the Dems' economy. No wonder new jobless claims are over 500,000 in the last month.
In the case of the CPSIA, the Dems are only too happy to whack us with heavy regulations, all justified by imaginary benefits. The imaginary benefits of the new CPSIA regulations are as invisible as the imaginary problems they are designed to solve. The absence of data on effectiveness is matched by the absence of data suggesting that there was a problem in the first place - the "know nothing's" jacked up your costs and destabilized your business to no purpose. Now Mr. Obama wants to fix it all with another handout. Throwing money at the problem is new style. And after that handout is parcelled out, the Dems will proceed to raise taxes on higher income individuals (read, small business owners, particularly S Corp owners) to attempt to staunch the hemorrhaging Federal deficit, and then express "shock" at the sluggish economy. No doubt the next step will have to be more handouts and perhaps Cap-and-Trade to raise more costs. What a great cycle. . . .
Is there another way? Well, as for small businesses in the children's product market, I would note that the voluminous new CSPIA rules (two feet high and growing) impose massive costs on industry (to comply) AND on government (to enforce). I think of the stupid health official bent on enforcing his food handler's license rule against the little girl in Portland operating a lemonade stand - many of the new CPSIA rules are pointless from a safety standpoint and cost big money to administer as well as to comply with. If the Dems seriously want to stimulate the economy and add jobs, here's an efficient way to do it for NO out-of-pocket cost - DROP your boundless regulations and go back to something more modest and manageable. This also means that the Obamite idea that life is better with lots more government needs to be shelved. I submit the recent rules on testing frequency and "reasonable" testing programs as evidence that inviting bureaucrats to become involved in operating businesses brings nothing but trouble, inefficiency and devastation. There must be a better way.
Hey, I figured out some time ago that I am talking to myself here. The CPSC certainly doesn't care or understand what I am talking about (or else they might have done something about it perhaps 300 blogposts ago). The Democrats in Congress likewise are deaf and disinterested. I cannot name a single Democrat, NOT ONE SINGLE DEMOCRAT, who will stand up in front of their peers and demand significant amendment or revocation of the CPSIA. The Dems are in lockstep agreement - no light shines in if your head is in the sand, after all.
You can't work with people like this.
I urge you (URGE YOU) to select the CPSIA perpetrator of your choosing and WORK to knock them out of Congress in this election cycle. Remember - they are trying to put YOU out of business. You need to return the favor.
Return the favor . . . this is my theme song until polls close on November 2. Then the party begins.