Posted by John Park on Feb 4th, 2009
Feb 4

Forgive me while I go on a tirade.
As you know, federal, state and local governments are suffering from major budget woes.  In CA, the franchise tax board (State IRS) is sending officials door-to-door to investigate if small retailers are properly collecting sales taxes.  Yes, they are going door-to-door to penalize small businesses and to levy heavy fines in cases where they might be operating as a retailer without a reseller permit.  Of course, they seem to be starting in lower income cities and in cities with a high-density of immigrants where tax codes might be difficult to understand or wade through.  The bright officials in CA have decided that this is a really good way to collect some revenues by kicking the small businesses while they are down.
When I learned of this, I was just outraged.
I really believe the “idiot level” of the federal, state and local governments have hit new heights in the past 6 months.  I don’t know any other group of people that can do more to stimulate an economy than small businesses.  I am referring to business with less than 25 employees—the real small businesses.  Every owner I know will almost immediately invest back in to their businesses whenever extra funds become available.  Small businesses are the “unsung heroes” holding this faltering economy together.  In essence, they are the duct tape. 
As idiots give other idiots billions of dollars of our tax money to companies on wall street and to the banks only to see them go on luxury retreats and to spend a million dollars to decorate an office, I am just astonished at the level of incompetence of our elected officials.  By the way, let’s not forget it’s these same companies who got us in to this mess in the first place.
In the meanwhile, small business owners work from dawn to dusk, 7 days a week, trying desperately to stay afloat.  They aren’t asking for bailouts.  They borrow from credit cards, ask their small staff to take pay cuts, cry quietly as they have to fire someone they consider family and their offices are decorated with a mix match of left-over furniture from luxurious places like Ikea and Staples.
Aside from the campaign trail video clips at some pancake restaurant, small businesses are pretty much being left alone to fend for themselves.  It’s kind of like how the smartest kid in the class gets the least attention from the teacher.  I think it’s fair to say that our officials have no idea what is going on in “real” small businesses.  We certainly shouldn’t be looking towards the SBA for help—the most useless organization in government.  For example, the news was all over the fact that the auto industry suffered a 50% decline in sales last month and mentioned the closure of auto dealerships across the country.  Of course this is bad news but the auto industry does not operate in a bubble.  What about the janitorial service who used to clean these local dealerships?  What about the diner next door who used to serve lunch to all of the employees of the dealership?  What about the guys who used to install the add-on stereo systems?  What’s happening to these businesses?
Instead of spending almost a trillion dollars in pork to grow the government, how about doing something meaningful and substantial for the “real” small businesses?
Here are some off-the-cuff ideas.
1)  Give 10,000,000 small businesses with less than 25 employees a pre-paid credit card for $10,000.  It would only be offered to businesses that have been around for at least 1 year and the card can only be used for a pre-approved list of vendors or product types (business expenditures). Cost = $100 Billion
2)  Loosen the rules for small businesses with less than 25 employees to be able to do business with the federal government.  These rules are cumbersome and have criteria many small businesses cannot clear like years in business, revenue minimums and initial filing costs.  Cost = Practically Nothing
3)  Offer no interest/unsecured loans to small businesses with less than 25 employees.  Have the businesses prove a track record of profitability.  Cost = Much less than the money we loaned to the auto industry and wall street
Do you have any good ideas?  Believe me… they need some good ideas.

The Death of Capitalism in a Presidential Election Year

Posted by John Park on Oct 18th, 2008
Oct 18

Abraham Lincoln Pro Capitalism

In this year of 700 Billion Dollar bailouts, 85 Billion Dollar loans to companies that like to spend 500K on company retreats, and possible write-offs of loan amounts speculative homeowners willingly signed for because of greed and envy: I can’t help but fall back on my true to the core capitalistic principles.  The fact that our politicians are now taking the lead from financial market decisions made in Europe might have something to do with it as well.
Both Barrack Obama and John McCain have abandoned CAPITALISM for an election.  In a Capitalistic Society, some will fail and some will succeed based on decisions made by individuals and because of market conditions (Timing).  Government should implement policies to grow these principles and afterwards, GET OUT OF THE WAY.  Government should not serve as a deterrent to failure.  Without failure, success cannot exist.
Now, you know how I REALLY feel.  Would you expect a Biz Crusader to have any belief other than the above?
As an example…I would like to offer you a few quotes from another Biz Crusader.
“Property is the fruit of labor…property is desirable…is a positive good in the world. That some should be rich shows that others may become rich, and hence is just encouragement to industry and enterprise. Let not him who is houseless pull down the house of another; but let him labor diligently and build one for himself, thus by example assuring that his own shall be safe from violence when built.”
“The prudent, penniless beginner in the world labors for wages a while, saves a surplus with which to buy tools or land, for himself, then labors on his own account another while, and at length hires another new beginner to help him. . . .  Many independent men, in this assembly, doubtless a few years ago were hired laborers. . . .”

On 888, China wants you to know one thing.

Posted by John Park on Aug 8th, 2008
Aug 8

KFC in Beijing China


The Olympics are starting today in Beijing, China.  The communist regime has spent over $44 Billion dollars in preparation for the games.  Keep in mind that this figure is based on Chinese math where a skilled construction worker makes $15 dollars a day.  Aside from the obvious euphoria of nationalism spilling into every corner of the massive country, there is also a more deeper and important reason for the huge expenditure.
The message is crystal clear.  China is OPEN for business.  That’s right.  China wants the young man to go EAST.
This country of 1.3 Billion people, roughly 4 times the size of U.S., is determined to become an economic superpower at any cost.  China is not a sleeping giant.  It is a giant doing jumping jacks.  So, how should we view this situation as American business owners?  Is it an opportunity?  Should we learn Chinese?  Do you remember in the nineties when we were all supposed to learn Japanese?
The big American companies are already doing business, a lot of business, in China.  GM and Ford are actually making money in China.  Did you know that the #1 luxury car in China is a black Buick sedan?  KFC is growing at a profit pace of 30% per year and of course the Golden Arches are there as well.  This sounds pretty good, right?  Well, it’s not good for Americans or American businesses.  The problem is we’re not exporting these products and services to China.  Instead these American brands are being produced in China by Chinese workers for Chinese people.  And, as soon as they meet the demands of their own people, the same American brands will then be exported back to the United States.  That’s right, we will be importing Fords and Chevys from China sooner than later.
The success of global economics depends largely on one country sending their products to another country.  This allows for the producing country to employee more people and to reap the financial benefits.  Because of the huge gap in labor costs, there is almost no incentive for China to import products from the U.S.  The only exception is the stuff they cannot make themselves.  This fact is essentially the key to seizing the enormous business opportunity created by China.
What do the Chinese people need during this exponential grow stage that they cannot produce or produce enough of themselves?  If you’re thinking about doing business in China, this is the question you have to answer to determine if your product or service qualifies.  If you firmly believe it does, it might be time to explore your global business aspirations.  Opportunities like China present itself maybe once or twice in a century.  We don’t have to watch the game from the sidelines.  Let’s jump in and show the Chinese what the “American Dream” is all about.



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