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The Small Business Administration Could Be Closed In The Next 30 Days

3:09 pm in Uncategorized by Lloyd Chapman

I predicted President Obama would resurrect Ronald Reagan’s plan to permanently close the Small Business Administration (SBA) by combining it with the Department of Commerce in November of 2008.

Ronald Reagan

Obama resurrected a Reagan-era plan to close the Small Business Administration.

In addition to being a conspiracy nut, I’m apparently also clairvoyant because that is exactly what the President announced he planned to do in January of 2012.

I think it’s fascinating that not one journalist in America contacted me and asked me how I knew. I’m also astonished that, so far, not one journalist has reported that President Obama’s plan to “streamline government” by combing the SBA and the Department of Commerce is identical to Ronald Reagan’s plan to permanently “close the SBA.”

President Obama’s staff must have seen the TV news reports from 1985, that showed the violent opposition most members of Congress had to Reagan’s plan to close the SBA. Senators like Carl Levin, Lowell Weicker and James Sasser pounded Reagan’s budget director David Stockman as he testified before Congress to push for the closure of the SBA.

Journalists like Peter Jennings, Tom Brokaw, Irvin R. Levine and Ann Compton covered the story for the prime time news.

Because of the overwhelming opposition in Congress and the attention the issue received from the mainstream media, Regan’s plan to close the SBA failed. Thank God it did, as a result over the following three decades, millions of small businesses were allowed to get their start with SBA-backed loans and compete for the 23 percent of all federal contracts that are required by law to be awarded to small businesses.

Apple Inc. and Federal Express are just two household names that got their start with help from the SBA.

Fast forward to 2013.  I have lost count on the number of press releases and blogs I have written trying to sound the alarm about the impending doom for the only agency in government to assist the 28 million small businesses where most Americans work that create over 90 percent of net new jobs.

Not one journalist has reported that President Obama’s plan to close the SBA, or should we say “streamline government” is identical in every way to Ronald Reagan’s plan to close the SBA.

There hasn’t been a word out of a single member of Congress objecting to the pending closure of the tiny federal agency that has helped to launch millions of small businesses. Why?

Here is the single most astonishing thing about this whole issue; I am the only person in the United States of America that has voiced any objection to closing the SBA. Where are all these national organizations that claim to represent the interests of American small businesses? The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) claims to be the “voice of small business in America.” So far, their voice has been silent. What about the U.S. Chamber, the American Small Business Chamber of Commerce or the National Small Business Association? They haven’t said a word. No press releases, no TV appearances, no blogs, no nothing. Why?

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Can there be a new Apple Computer or Federal Express Without SBA?

7:52 am in Uncategorized by Lloyd Chapman

 

Apple Computer and Federal Express are just two examples of thousands of firms that got their start with the help of the Small Business Administration (SBA).

President Obama has announced his intention to resurrect Ronald Reagan’s plan to permanently close the SBA by combining it with the Department of Commerce.

When Ronald Reagan caved into pressure from the nation’s largest defense contractors and agreed to try and close the SBA, the mainstream media and Democrats in Congress mounted a formidable opposition. Small business advocates like Senators Carl Levin, James Sasser and Lowell Weicker defeated Reagan’s plan to close the SBA and dismantle all federal small business programs.

Journalists like Peter Jennings, Tom Brokaw, Ann Compton and Irving R. Levine all came to the aid of American small businesses.

As a result, during the last 30 years, millions of small businesses were able to get their start, compete for federal contracts, receive loans, flourish and create millions of net new jobs in America.

According to the latest data from the U.S. Census Bureau, small businesses are responsible for over 90 percent of net new jobs in America, over 50 percent of the private sector workforce, over 50 percent of the GDP and over 90 percent of U.S. exporters. A study by the Kauffman Foundation found 100 percent of all net new jobs in America, since 1980, have been created by small businesses.

Reagan was honest and blunt that he wanted to permanently “close the SBA” by combining it with the Department of Commerce. President Obama has learned from Reagan’s failed attempt to “close the SBA” so he has renamed his SBA closure plan, “streamlining government” and “combining agencies.”

So far, it has been extremely successful in avoiding media attention and not one journalist in America has reported Obama’s plan to close the SBA is identical in every way to Ronald Reagan’s plan to close the SBA.

Without the political opposition and accurate media coverage Reagan faced, President Obama will likely be successful in closing the SBA and bringing an end to the only agency in American history to assist the 28 million small businesses that create up to 100 percent of the nation’s net new jobs.

Without coverage by the mainstream media, by the time most Americans find out the SBA has been shuttered and all federal small business programs are to be dismantled, it will be too late.

If the SBA is closed, millions of future companies like Apple and Federal Express will never exist. Their positive impact on our economy and our society will never be known. The devastating negative impact of the SBA’s closure on our nation’s economy will be felt for generations.

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No Matter Who Takes The Wheel On November 6, Small Businesses Are In For A Bumpy Ride

3:42 pm in Uncategorized by Lloyd Chapman

President Obama has announced on several occasions his desire to essentially close the Small Business Administration (SBA) by combining it with the Department of Commerce. Anyone who has been in Washington long enough to have lunch knows the Department of Commerce is essentially a division of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. The U.S. Chamber and I aren’t exactly close friends.

President Obama

If Mitt Romney wins this election, he will start talking about closing the SBA before Anne gets the new curtains ordered for their White House bedroom. Despite their unending campaign baloney about investing in the middle class and creating jobs, Republicans, since Ronald Reagan, have had it out for the SBA. Reagan tried closing the SBA twice. The corporate bosses want that 23 percent of the federal contracts allotted to small businesses and they want it now.

President George W. Bush tried to starve the agency to death during his administration by cutting the SBA budget and staff by almost 50 percent. The agency was so understaffed during the Hurricane Katrina aftermath that 2,000 temporary employees had to be hired to assist the storm victims in receiving SBA backed loans to rebuild their businesses. He told his SBA appointee, Administrator Hector Baretto, that he wanted the agency closed by the end of his first term. Some mouthy guy in California launched a PR campaign that made that assignment a lot more difficult than Bush and Barreto had ever expected and the SBA was saved. Barrreto was ultimately fired for his failure to fulfill his mission.

Fortune 500 firms and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce have lobbied to close the SBA for decades. The Small Business Act mandates that a minimum of 23 percent of the total value of all federal contracts be awarded to small businesses. Why do corporate giants want the SBA closed? It’s really quite simple – GREED. The corporate giants that call the shots in Washington DC want every penny the federal government spends to go straight into their pockets.

The fact that small businesses are responsible for more than 90 percent of all net new jobs in America, 50 percent of the private sector work force, more than 50 of the gross domestic product (GDP) and more than 90 percent of all U.S. exporters doesn’t mean a hill of beans to the most ruthless corporate giants ruling the roost in Washington DC.

Let’s take a quick inventory, the U.S. is in the midst of the worst economic downturn in 80 years, small businesses are responsible for the overwhelming majority of net new jobs, and there is only one miniscule federal agency to service the 27 million small businesses where the majority of Americans work.

The corporate-backed, corrupt politicians see this issue a different way. They don’t want to squander a measly $900 million a year on the only federal agency that services the small business that are responsible for the vast majority of net new jobs. Forget the fact that the SBA’s budget is roughly one tenth of one percent of the budget allotted to the Department of Defense (DoD), which outright loses or misplaces almost 10 times as much money a year as it takes to run the SBA. There is obviously no way we can ever balance the budget and cut the deficit without closing one of the smallest agencies in Washington DC, right?

In all seriousness, the best way to determine if a politician is an outright, lying crook and a conman is to just look for one that proposes to close the SBA under the guise of saving money to balance the budget and cut the deficit.

Any honest elected official in Washington would realize that doubling the SBA staff and budget is the best way out of our economic recession. The SBA budget was higher 30 years ago than it is today. We need to reopen the SBA field offices the Bush administration closed. We need to reinvigorate each and every federal program to help our nation’s chief job creators – small businesses.

Hey, I’ve got a wacky idea, why don’t we stop giving federal small business contracts to some of the biggest companies on earth? Every year, for the past seven years, the SBA Office of Inspector General (SBA OIG) has named the diversion of federal small business contracts to corporate giants as the number one management challenge at the SBA.

I know it sounds crazy to quit giving billions of dollars a month in federal small business contracts to Fortune 500 firms but, who knows, it just might help the 27 million small businesses that are the irrefutable engine of economic growth and job creation in this country.

Creative Commons photo by Bernard Pollack on Flickr.