Govt Goes After Biz Cell Phones

In yet another attack on free enterprise and entrepreneurs –see yesterday’s post on the Campaign for Free Enterprise — the government is considering taxing cell phone’s issued by business. According to the WSJ, the government is thinking about counting cell phones at ‘fringe benefits’ and thus eligible for taxation.

Gotta love the US Government — tax a tool/technology that has brought incredible efficiency and opportunity to business users so that corporations such as GM, Chrysler, and AIG can be bailed out.

Am I the crazy one here or is it ‘our dear leaders’ in DC who are off their rockers?


To Policy Makers: A Small Dose of Schumpeter

While we have been bailing out folks for awhile now, in the next few months as the Obama team and the powerful Dem Congress set and implement their agendas, expect more bailouts via tax cuts, mortgage adjustments, and spending on everything from bridges to “National Bee Museum” parking lots.

We offer up a nugget from Schumpeter’s 1934 work The Theory of Economic Development, in the hope that some policy makers will remember that creating new things (not preserving old ones) is at the core of sustainable growth that raises living standards. Here is J A Schumpeter explaining a core motive of entrepreneurs:

“there is the joy of creating, of getting things done of simply exercising one’s energy and ingenuity… Our type seeks out difficulties, changes in order, delights in ventures”

We hope that policy makers take this simple idea — that the creation of the new, not the protection of the old, is what keeps entrepreneurs and economies moving into the future. So spend if you will, but please find people and groups focused on facing challenges and creating new futures, not preserving ‘glorious’ pasts and avoiding more difficulties.

Pelosi’s $25 Billion Business Plan Competition

The other day, this blog announced the First Annual Save Detroit Business Plan Competition. It appears that the leadership in congress feels this is a good idea and is also demanding plans. Pelosi’s Save Detroit Business Plan Competition is awarding up to $25 billion in prizes!

From CNN Money, “It is all about accountability and viability,” said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif. “Wepelosi [need to] see a plan where the auto industry is held accountable. Until they show us the plan, we cannot show them the money.” (Note to the Speaker Pelosi– I would love to be on the judging panel to decide who gets the money… contact me soon so we can determine our judging criteria. thank you)

We will forward all plans submitted to our competition to speaker Pelosi and leader Reid. So be sure to include how much of the $25 billion your plan requires (if you are using government funds in your plan). Thanks for submitting your plan to campusentrepreneurship / @ /!

The Coming Civil War: Corporations v Entrepreneurs

I just read in the USA Today that a group of CEOs is asking for a $500 billion dollar stimulus package. Good for them, bad for entrepreneurs. With all of the money going from Washington to corporate giants, it is becoming obvious that entrepreneurs and those in high growth industries have been forced into a civil war against old line corporations. 

The government is clearly choosing its side (after years of patronage this was obvious) and will favor their hand picked corporate friends over new, more radical companies offering creative destruction. (Is the government going to give $$ to Tesla Motors?)

Entrepreneurs have had a great run over the last 25 or so years, but that era may be coming to an end. The obvious irony is that only entrepreneurs can pull us back onto a sustainable path of innovation and growth. 

As an entrepreneur I am trying to ignore this reality and stay focused on building my firm, but I know the landscape has shifted and I can’t help but be appalled by what I am seeing and reading.  

As my partner and I use our savings and investments to self-fund our business, bloated corporations, homeowners, governors, and unions demand trillions from the government. Trillions that entrepreneurs will pay in the end. The first shots of the economic civil war have been fired and entrepreneurs are already on the defensive.