In years gone by, we were taught economics in high school. Although these classes were relatively simple, they gave us a basic understanding of day to day economics. Some of what we were taught was so simple that it’s hard to imagine someone not getting an understanding of the lessons. Stuff like saving 10 percent of what you earn, making sure you had a down payment before making a major purchase like a car or a house, knowing what percent of a paycheck could go for rent or purchase of a home, knowing how much interest you were paying and having a good plan for reducing your debt, and waiting to buy something until you could afford it.
We don’t do that with our personal finances, our state finances or most importantly, our country’s finances! Until we come to our senses and start living within our means like our parents and their parents did, we can expect to find ourselves progressively worse off. I heard an excellent explanation of why small businesses are not growing. A business owner is facing almost certain tax increases, additional punitive regulations, and increased health care costs.
Small business owners aren’t radical right wing idiots, they are mildly conservative, and have to be in order to survive in the competitive marketplace. They are not about to invest their savings and borrow against their assets in order to pay for a business expansion unless they are pretty sure they can get a decent return on that investment. In addition to the other worries that are facing them, we are almost assured there is going to be more bailouts in the near future. I’ve said all that in order to say this: no matter what your political affiliation is, find out where the candidates stand on fiscal responsibility. We cannot afford as a nation to continue spending resources that we do not have. We absolutely have to create a business climate that will encourage growth because growth means jobs and jobs will solve the economic woes we are facing. This absolutely does not mean that we should neglect our obligations to Social Security or other social programs that have been promised. What it does mean is that we should make sure our elected officials do not give those entitlements to those who did not earn and do not deserve them! Inform yourself about the candidates and where they stand on these issues. Check out their past voting records, see how the business publications rate them, find out if what they are saying is what they have actually done in the past. Only by finding out for ourselves and not letting the media lead us to false conclusions will we be able to pick candidates who will help get us out of this mess. Wow, I really got on my soapbox huh?