Monday, September 13, 2010

CPSIA - More Hypocritical Small Business "Help"

760 days have passed since ANY Democrat in Congress did ANYTHING to help us on the CPSIA. There are only 51 days left until Election Day.

Today we heard more blather from our Fearless Leader lecturing Congressional Republicans on an asserted lack of commitment to small business. He's totally on the side of small business. or so he contends. Here's his take of the status of the so-called "embargoed" small business bill that he wants to pass to solve all our economic problems:

"And you hear some of my friends on the Republican side complaining that, well, we’d get more business investment if we had more certainty. Well, here’s an example where we could give some certainty right away. Pass this bill. I will sign it into law the day after it’s passed or the day it is passed. And then right away I think a lot of small businesses around the country will feel more comfortable about hiring and making investments."

The problem, according to Mr. Obama, is Republicans. Aha. And what about all the other things we know? I have documented in this space for two solid years the deafness of Congressional Democrats to our pleas. We have basically grovelled for scraps and been totally stuffed. Even the micro-businesses (as represented by the well-known HTA) have been spurned cruelly by the CPSC and by Congress. We are being asphyxiated and no Dem can be bothered to notice.

Of course, I think it's RICH to be lectured by Obama over "certainty". He says he has a quick fix to "certainty" - just pass his bill and magically everything's okay again. Ummm, that may be just a tad over-simplified. In the children's product industry right now, we have a ten-ton anvil dangling over our heads with the pending testing frequency and component testing rules at the CPSC, all with the potential (likelihood?) to squish small businesses. This Dem-run agency has begun to ignore public comments, as evidenced by its ridiculous dismissal of comments on the definition of "Children's Product". Taking comments is a pain in the neck, especially if the draft rules make no sense. You keep having to rewrite everything . . . . Is it any wonder why people are not investing in this market? Given that we must also deal with the pending cost deluge of the health care bill and unspecified tax hikes - for many people, the fetal position is the new work posture.

And what is happening right now, simultaneously with Mr. Obama's lectures about how to make life better for small businesses? Well, Mr. O and his Dems are cynically opposing rescission of the penal 1099 provision in the Obamacare bill. Know about this small business killer yet? You will now have to file 1099 forms with the IRS for all merchandise your business buys (over $600 per year per supplier). The paper blizzard won't just affect your suppliers, but also your customers (to whom you are a supplier). Try to estimate the number of forms flying back and forth every year courtesy of this new rule. How will you handle this new paper pushing exercise? We estimate that these forms will cost us $50-$100 to prepare and file (more than a P.O. because of demanding record keeping requirements and possible liability for errant filings) - for our thousands of suppliers and customers. Do the math - this will slaughter small business. Death by a thousand (paper) cuts.

The Republicans want to kill it. The Dems admit it was a mistake (they say they were "blindsided" - everything bad is "unintentional", rather than poorly-conceived or simply incompetent). Nonetheless, the Dems don't want to delete it. Why? Well, amending this provision "opens the door" to amending other parts of Obamacare. Whoa! Can't do that . . . even if their stupid provision will kill your business. Too bad for you (and me), I guess. See this article from today's Wall Street Journal.

I will hand it to the Dems - they have created their own cruel kind of certainty. I am absolutely certain they don't care what I think or what happens to the jobs our company provides. That seems quite certain nowadays.

This can't continue . . . . PLEASE help on Election Day.


Anonymous said...

Amazing, isn't it? You can't tell me that Mr. O. doesn't know how the CPSIA is affecting small businesses. So enough with the political grand-standing and speech-ifying, and DO something to help small businesses that the small businesses are BEGGING for.

halojones-fan said...

Hardly surprising that they were "blindsided" by the bill's provisions when they were proudly declaring that they hadn't read the bill and angrily denouncing people who suggested that they ought to do!

Anonymous said...

Maybe we should listen to Barry O, he does have management experience, oh wait maybe not. But he did run a small business before he...oh wait, maybe not. Of course, he has the educational training to understand how a business is run right?
I know Jimmy Carter is smiling and feeling fuzzy knowing he has been overrun by Obama as the WORST president EVER!

Wacky Hermit said...

Thanks to the 1099 requirement, I'm going to be switching my Sam's Club business membership to a personal membership; otherwise I'll be issuing a 1099 for my groceries. I'll be buying my mailing envelopes, ink, and paper elsewhere, I guess.

I really don't think the Washington elites know what a "small business" really is. They think a "small" business is one that has 100-500 employees or something. Commissioner Adler made a remark about how "small businesses" can implement Six Sigma stuff. HELLO?!?!? How many mom-n-pop stores with a handful of employees even know what Six Sigma is? How many Etsy sellers? My husband works for a company with something like 200 employees, and they don't do Six Sigma or any of that stuff. Heck, I only know what it is because a friend of mine told me about a job opportunity teaching it at her (larger business) workplace.

They just don't see all this micro-sized economic activity: the people who sell stuff on eBay, who take a few piano students, who put extra veggies out at the farmer's market, who make crafts for Christmas boutiques, who sell tamales car-to-car outside the supermarket. It all adds up to quite a bit, and it makes a huge difference in people's quality of life. It may not rise to the level of what Washington considers a "small" business, but they buy clothes and lessons and Christmas presents for their kids with that money. And no matter how many laws they make in Washington, it won't go away, it'll just become illegal, because people need these things.

halojones-fan said...

@Hermit: Well, there it is again; the country's being run by B-school grads who can't even conceive of a company that does less than three million dollars of sales in a year. They have no concept of how a single craftsman could make enough money to support an entire family.

jennifer said...

The 1099 thing is like CPSIA on steroids and is the only reason they are paying any attention to it. It affects EVERYONE.

I saw a little bit of that speech and it was terrible and weird that it was held on someones lawn in Fairfax. He doesn't give anyone any information. All he does is blame Republicans that the bill isn't passing. Who is writing these speeches? Let's talk about why they aren't passing. What is in them? Why is everything becoming more polarized?

Oh - my favorite find this week is that he has a children's book coming out this fall! The proceeds go to a good cause but um not the best timing I wouldn't think.