Friday, November 19, 2010
Our government is making it harder all the time. Please make it stop:
As a Democrat whose politics are undeniably liberal on social issues, I lamented the outcome of the midterm elections. But as an entrepreneur with two software start-ups under my belt, I couldn't help but celebrate - and more than a little. As the fall campaigns wore on, I had found myself listening closely to the Tea Party, nursing the hope that its message would push both major parties to change the way they do business.
To understand my motivation, pick up the November issue of Washingtonian magazine. The annual Salary Survey notes on Page 81 that top trade association leaders (industry lobbyists) make multimillion-dollar salaries to "keep tabs on what the federal government was doing or might do."
These outsize earnings are symptomatic of a disease that is slowly killing the American economy. We are creating so much regulation - over tax policy, health care, financial activity - that smart people have figured out that they can get rich faster and more easily by manipulating rules on behalf of existing corporations than by creating net new activity and wealth. Gamesmanship pays better than entrepreneurship.
Absolutely, positively, read the whole thing. Especially if you're one of those liberals who claims not to understand why the Obama administration's regulatory policy is working against its fiscal policy (meaning, of course, that the fiscal stimulus is wasted, and our children's standard of living is compromised for very little benefit).
Title reference explained here.
"We are creating so much regulation - over tax policy, health care, financial activity - that smart people have figured out that they can get rich faster and more easily by manipulating rules on behalf of existing corporations than by creating net new activity and wealth."
This could have come right out of Atlas Shrugged.
Modest Proposal: An excise tax on lobbyists. 90% of revenue. All of them. Lobbyists have to register, so this wouldn't be that hard to police.
They want to use the tax code to social engineer, so turnabout's fair play.
We know we're starting to "recover" when the unemployment rate in DC equals that of Ohio. It's that simple.
Today, I signed the agreement to sell one small business (to Europeans) and if could sell my other business for a reasonable price, I would in a heartbeat. It is just too tough dealing with all the government crap, day in and day out. Labor regulations, environmental regs, ERISA, EEOC, mandated but unpaid sales tax collection, costs of hiring, etc etc. Let the government create businesses, if they are so damn smart.