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The Scuttling of the U.S.S. Small Business Act: 'Tiers' of a Clown. (Part Three of Nine)

Posted By Guy Timberlake, The American Small Business Coalition, LLC, Sunday, October 09, 2011
Updated: Saturday, October 22, 2011
Wait for it...

Did you hear that? That was the sound of seawater flooding another compartment of the great vessel responsible for job creation, ongoing innovation and an entrepreneurial spirit long since forgotten by many companies not on this ship's passenger list.

The cause is not an accident. Critical hatchway's are being opened by opponents and opportunists who through political and corporate posturing (and nefarious activities), are working hard to sink the collection of government programs providing assistance to legions of small and microbusinesses often referred to as the 'backbone' of the U.S. economy by pundits and practitioners.

Beyond the typical opposition to anything creating benefit for the underdog, there is an ever-increasing chorus of activity calling for the demise of set-aside programs related to government contracting. This includes a combination of:

  • detractors who believe all contractors are unnecessary;
  • those who prefer the perceived safety and security of working with an organization with the cash reserves to buy small countries, and;
  • inaction of those elected to positions to effect meaningful change.

All of this contributes to the methodical chipping away of the foundation of these programs.

Not sure what I'm talking about?

Tiers of a Clown. The opening lines of this Smokey Robinson hit include "Now if there's a smile on my face It's only there trying to fool the public..." which seems representative of some companies who have achieved the "other than small business" tag. While happy with their growth, many are desperately trying to get back into the cover of small business programs.

How you ask?

For one, they are lobbying for a dramatic increase to the size standards, which effectively shuts the door on start-up companies. They are also working to have the current small business programs tiers expanded to include benefits for them. That's not how they describe it, but considering government agency downsizing, tightening budgets, the only way mid-tier companies can get a program is by stripping away resources from the current programs for small businesses or having themselves re-inserted into the small business tier. One mid-tier group's strategy seems set as they have publicly opted to set their aim at the small business community and not "man up" to face their real adversaries.

It is what it is.


The Chief Visionary

"The person who says it cannot be done should not interrupt the person doing it."

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