How do you stimulate the economy? Don’t do it with a stimulus package. Just remove the brakes by cutting the red tape.
Here’s a look at bureaucracy at its finest. If you’re ready to be a new entrepreneur or small business owner, then you may want to know some of the infuriating things (regulations, processes and whatever else) that can get in your way even as you try to get your idea off the ground. Some parts of the United States aren’t that friendly towards their business-oriented citizenry. Allow me to present to you a few scenarios of government policies in play; I’d love to hear what you think about them!
As a small business owner, I watched with interest this video created by InstituteForJustice, a civil liberties law firm.
The Institute for Justice also has an interesting youtube channel you could check out.
How To Create More Jobs In America? Cut The Red Tape!
The position taken here is that unemployment in America may be resolved, not by stimulus programs, but perhaps by tax reform. These tax reforms should not cost taxpayers any extra, but should aim to create a broader tax base for states and cities.
Ridiculous, often complicated regulations that beset workers and entrepreneurs do exist, not unlike the frivolous, irrelevant pork barrel projects that we come to hear about once in a while. Small business is particularly impacted by these inane laws and restrictions. We may ask ourselves: how can we create jobs when our hands are tied? In some areas, there are just way too many hoops to jump through that serve as an immediate deterrent to starting a business. If you’re a would be entrepreneur living in Milwaukee, L.A., Houston, D.C. or Miami, you’d probably say: why bother?
Chip Mellor, the president and general counsel of the Institute for Justice, said, “If the nation is looking to the federal government to create jobs in America, it is looking in the wrong place. If we want to grow our economy, we must remove government-imposed barriers to honest enterprise at the city and state levels. Remove those barriers, and you will see a return to the optimism and opportunity that are hallmarks of the American Dream.”
The path to small business ownership is already strewn with risks… why make it any harder? If the government can’t support or encourage its local entrepreneurs, then why not just get out of the way? Obviously, it’s because of the self-serving nature of some government bodies.
Starting A Business Was Never So Painful
Here are some highlights from the video:
- Milwaukee, WI doesn’t allow you to start a new business anywhere (even your garage) unless you pay for a commercial lease first. For closing a business in Milwaukee, you’ll need a government issued license and will have to submit an itemized inventory of everything that you are selling.
- Los Angeles, CA requires a permit for you to open a used bookstore. As the owner of a used bookstore, you’re required to be fingerprinted, while anyone who sells you books may need to be fingerprinted too. Each book you have for sale needs to be stamped with an identification number that identifies the book and where it came from. And if this is not enough, you’ll have to hold on to a book for at least 30 days before it can be sold.
- Houston, TX has a beef against balloons, it seems. You can only use them to sell cars. I did try to find out a bit more about this policy. Hmmm… is it as bad as it sounds? The point here is that lots of people are up in arms when stuff gets in the way of their “property values”.
- Washington D.C. requires you to have a license before you can launch an interior design business.
- Want to be a street vendor? Miami, FL requires a series of occupational licenses, certificates, $500,000 insurance and a myriad of other forms and documents. Expect to swim in paperwork!
After all that, I guess I’m sort of glad that I only have to worry about different matters here in the SF Bay Area (e.g. taxes, cost of living, public school system, budget deficit).
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