It’s not a good practice to comment on our government or politics while conducting business. We are not paid political entities and there is no upside to creating ill will or hurt feelings with our customer base. I have tried over the past 30+ years to adhere to this policy. However, these are not ordinary times and everyone I meet is concerned. The upside to our government’s dysfunction is that more of the population is engaged at a level I have never witnessed. Young and old, liberal and conservative, employed , unemployed or retired, owners and workers alike are voicing their opinions (and frustrations) to anyone that will listen.
The common thread I find with all I read and hear from others is the total disregard for “ any sense of fairness” in today’s political arena. This “fairness issue” transcends all levels of government from national to local interests. All of us have seen the polls- and it is not pretty and it certainly does not bode well for the future. The fact is that everything from taxes, medical issues, immigration , bail outs etc. fail any reasonable “fairness test”.
I listened to the CEO of Caterpillar last week voice his opinions on the current market conditions. He remarked that business owners are aware that Washington is not working for Americans and that both parties share equal blame! He went on to say that many of his peers (in similar positions) believe that job growth will only improve in the US if revenues are increased (a.k.a. taxes) AND spending is decreased, leading the country to a sense of fiscal responsibility. Like most, he suggested that Congress and the President check their egos and political alliances at the door and begin to “work for those they represent.” Companies have an abundance of cash reserves that they are ready to spend once they “ see that a plan for this economy exists.”
You can argue the timing of when the wheels began to fall off the wagon, but that solves nothing! Taking stances and stating that compromise is not an option solves nothing ! Blaming and campaigning instead of governing solves nothing. Prosperity in the US will only occur when we produce goods and services in this country, where all involved are rewarded for their efforts with some sense of fairness. It makes sense to me if current individuals in government fail to make progress before November 2012 the outcome should be that they ALL lose their privileges… and their jobs!
-Kevin Burnett, Exec. Vice President