07/30/10 — Economic worry: There are ways to address flailing economy ... but more taxes isn't it

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Economic worry: There are ways to address flailing economy ... but more taxes isn't it

It sure isn't easy to listen to the news these days.

As if any of us needed to be reminded, government officials announced today that the alleged economic "recovery" might very well be fizzling.

And some experts are wondering whether we are headed for a significant, double-dip recession.

There seem to be a whole lot of people who do not get why this happening -- or have any clue what to do about it.

And for us, the peanut gallery, it just gets scarier and scarier.

Truth be told, there are some easy steps that could be taken almost immediately to make the climate for business a little friendlier.

And despite what some might suggest, it is there where the first tentative steps could be made toward getting confidence up again.

Look at it this way: You are a business. You have watched orders from your customers dropping significantly over the past few months and it does not look like it is going to get any better.

You look at your balance sheet so far for the year and you see that you are headed for a pretty steep profit decline.

What would you do if it were your family budget?

Would you invest money in a new car, a new floor for the kitchen or get those repairs to the roof done?

No way. You would squirrel away the money into a rainy day fund.

Part of what is scaring businesses these days is the looming tax bill next year. With all kinds of talk about taking away the Bush tax cuts and even some talk of increasing taxes rates on some of the "wealthiest" Americans (which include many small businesses, by the way), some people are afraid that if they begin to take tentative steps to grow their business again, they will find themselves in a pickle when tax time rolls around.

So, that's why businesses are still not hiring and very few are investing in growing their operations.

Turning this around requires more than speeches and "stimulus" spending. An aggressive plan to make more money available -- and aggressive cuts in spending in Washington -- will build confidence that someone "gets it."

And that more than anything else is what we need.

Published in Editorials on July 30, 2010 10:30 AM