Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Size Matters?

A couple of interesting nuggets from yesterday's Wall Street Journal:

The first concerns the willingness of more and more businesses to wade into politics and spend money to protect their interests:

"Businesses have traditionally had little appetite for political risk," the Chamber's Mr. Miller said before a rally with Republican Senate candidate Rob Portman at an Ohio plant that makes upholstery for planes and cars. This has been changed, he said, by concern that Democrats in Washington are pursuing policies that will hurt business. "That threat to their businesses has brought them to the fight," he said.

One of the key points that was mostly lost in the kerfuffle over Target donating money to a group that was supporting pro-business politicians was why they would risk alienating customers in such a manner. The answer is that Target, like many businesses throughout the country, is damn worried about the direction the country is headed and what that means for their bottom line.

Another article explained how businesses (big and small) are joining together to Fight Obama's Job Plans:

Democrats hope that the small-business loan package will highlight their commitment to "Main Street" businesses. Instead, small-business owners are mobilizing this week to oppose an obscure provision in the health-care law that would require them to file a 1099 tax report for every vendor transaction valued at $600 or more. The measure, intended to recover taxes on unreported income, would create "a tremendous paperwork compliance burden," the NFIB says. Democrats have voiced similar concerns.

The Senate is expected to vote Tuesday on two measures that would scale back the reporting requirements. Both are expected to fail. On Wednesday, the Chamber of Commerce is bringing several hundred small-business owners to Capitol Hill to press lawmakers for the provision's repeal. It has sent protest letters to lawmakers signed by 3,000 business owners.

"Of all things in the health-care law, this is going to be a priority for the business community. It's not going away," said Bruce Josten, chief lobbyist at the Chamber.

Election-year efforts by the White House and Democratic lawmakers to tax multinationals to pay for small-business and other hiring initiatives have backfired, business leaders say. The Business Roundtable, which includes chiefs of U.S. multinationals, will release a study Tuesday slamming proposals that the group says ignore the interdependence of large and small businesses. The study advocates for policies that favor both large corporations and the small businesses that sell $3 billion a year in goods and services to them.

It's encouraging to see business interests resisting the efforts of Democrats to try to divide them into big (bad) and small (good) groups. The idea that you could impose punitive taxes on big businesses without having a negative impact on small businesses is ludicrous. Who supplies these big businesses anyway? Small businesses. And what is a big business really, but a small business that has enjoyed great success.

The Obama administration and Congressional Democrats need to come up with plans that are good for business writ large. There will be no true recovery for the US economy until the climate for business, all business improves.