Latest Pajamas Media Column (‘ATMs and Other Machines are Exempt from ObamaCare’) Is Up (Update: An ATM ‘Guest Posts’ at Boehner’s Site)
It will go up here at BizzyBlog on Saturday (link won’t work until then; the title won’t have “ATMs” in it, though it’s a good if imperfect hook at the moment) after the blackout expires.
Special thanks to PJM for getting the column up so quickly after submission.
Supplement: Not emphasized in the column was the point that it isn’t just existing businesses which make decisions on how to structure themselves. The decision on whether or not to hire people is one over which start-up and early-stage businesses must also agonize.
The default decision in today’s economic landscape is not to hire if it can at all be avoided. How is it accomplished? Three ways:
- The founder or founders do things themselves or use free spouse/partner/family help.
- They outsource as many functions as possible to other companies, who then get to wrestle with the hiring/non-hiring decision.
- They use temporary help services (495,000 of the 550,000 jobs added since the recession ended are temp jobs).
To slightly amend a quote from the column: ” If you believe that having additional employees — or any employees — around will become cost-prohibitive in 2014, you avoid hiring them today.”
Those who do come onto the payroll are given the clear understanding that it’s part-time, involves no employee benefits, and that it could end at any moment.
Also: In a radio appearance on a station down in Georgia during the past week, the host told me the story of an entrepreneur she knew who had to let about 20 people go when his business seriously contracted during the recession. She said that he now survives with about four employees (I don’t remember the exact number she said), but that he has decided not to staff up in the future — even if it means not growing as fast as he would like — so that he doesn’t have to repeat the wrenching experience of terminating good people. The guess here is that this entrepreneur is not alone in his outlook.
UPDATE: It’s good to see Speaker John Boehner’s peeps have a sense of humor (internal links and bolds are in original) –
Guest Post: Blame Washington Democrats’ Economy, Not the ATMs!
Posted by An Automated Teller Machine (ATM) on June 15, 2011
I didn’t do it.
President Obama says I’m to blame for high unemployment – part of the “structural” problems with the economy. Yes, he actually said my electronic brethren and I – who dispense cash and make lines move a little more quickly at the airport – are part of the reason 1.5 million fewer Americans have jobs than when the “stimulus” was enacted.
But before the president fingered us as responsible for job losses, he sought to take credit for the sluggish economy.
And even DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) said this morning that Democrats own the economy. I don’t. I’m just an ATM. I don’t own anything.
So if there are any “structural issues” with our faltering economy, as the president said, it’s likely because of his policies – not ATMs. For example:
- SPENDING TOO MUCH: Democrats want to spend more of your money (and rack up more debt). I want you to spend it. The Democrats who run Washington spent almost a trillion dollars on a “stimulus” that didn’t work (and bragged about it during “Recovery Summer”) — and they want to spend more! They haven’t passed a budget that spurs job growth and stops spending money we don’t have (note: Republicans have), and even worked with an army of lobbyists to fight spending cuts. You won’t catch me spending any of your money; I just want you to have it.
- TAXING TOO MUCH: Democrats want to take away more of your money through tax hikes. I just give you your money. Democrats imposed massive job-crushing tax hikes, penalties, and mandates in their health care law. And many want new tax hikes on small businesses. ATMs? We just give you your money. Sure, a lot of ATMs charge higher fees than we used to – and I apologize for that, seriously – but it’s only because Democrats in Washington made us do it (see Dodd-Frank regulations – and the next bullet). Democrats treat you like an ATM; I am an ATM.
- REGULATING TOO MUCH: Democrats complicate life for job creators by creating more red tape. I simplify things. The regulatory onslaught of recent years has paralyzed small businesses. From ObamaCare to Dodd-Frank, the national energy tax to the government takeover of the internet, excessive regulations – imposed and proposed – raise costs and create an environment of uncertainty that hurts job growth. Me? I just let you walk up, punch in some numbers, and take some cash. Simple.
ATMs and airport kiosks (and even teleprompters) are tools that help make life a little easier. Republicans have a plan for jobs that would make life a little easier for families and small businesses (Jobs.GOP.Gov) by removing barriers that are holding back our economy.
Instead of treating the American people like an ATM – and then blaming us for our economic woes – maybe the White House should take a cue from Republicans and focus on jobs?
Or perhaps ATMs really are smart enough to have opinions of their own …