As the so-called Super Committee failed to reach agreement on $1.2 trillion in deficit reduction, our politicians and their designated flame-throwers frothed in their “I told you so” antics, heaping blame on everyone besides themselves.
The real failure, of course, was to demonstrate to the American people that Congress simply cannot work together and this country is totally devoid of leadership.
In particular, it continues to reinforce the feeling of uncertainty and hopelessness among small-business owners that deficit spending will not be controlled, which means any sort of hiring will be postponed indefinitely.
The losers once again are the 14 million unemployed, who now face a very dire holiday season with little reason for optimism.
The latest labor statistics indicate that both the number of unemployed persons (13.9 million) and the unemployment rate (9.0 percent) changed little over last month. For too many months, the unemployment rate has remained in a narrow range from 9.0 percent to 9.2 percent.
And this is not the worst of it.
Millions more have simply stopped looking for work while others have taken part-time jobs just to survive. This has created the sad statistic that one of four American children live in homes below the poverty level.
No American citizen should find this acceptable.
Against this backdrop, our national debt recently exceeded $15 trillion, or 100 percent of our gross domestic product. We have spent ourselves into oblivion, yet, there are no jobs to be found. Something is very wrong.
Can anyone explain why this didn’t create any sense of urgency among the Super Committee members and our president to find common ground?
Sen. John Kyl of Arizona, one of six Republican members on the Super Committee, said: "By taxing people who provide jobs, you put off the day we have economic recovery and job creation in this country. It would hit those people; the small businesses who we all acknowledge are the ones who create the jobs." I couldn’t agree more.
As an entrepreneur, I am always looking for opportunities to grow my business and hire more people. But I can’t seriously consider this if oppressive taxes and other uncertainties hinder my ability to spend.
Like any good businessperson, I am projecting revenue and cash flow months out. I can’t get an accurate fix on it if I don’t know what kind of liabilities I may face. This simple reality shouldn’t be too hard to understand.
However, the taxes currently being proposed by the Democrats on the Super Committee would directly impact over 70 percent of our small businesses, which coincidentally created 70 percent of all new jobs in this country during the last decade.
I can agree to closing some loop holes while simplifying the tax code, if these result in some slightly higher taxes on some while reducing the burden on the majority of our job creators. But an across the board tax increase on our economic multipliers — our small businesses — just delays our recovery.
When I see a bi-partisan committee implode rather than compromise on economic issues that impact every American, it sends an ominous message that this country is rudderless. This isn’t the way forward to preserving a robust economy and stimulating job creation. It is like a sledgehammer smashing away at our economic superpower status.
This failure in equal measure resides with the president. His hands-off approach diminished the sincerity of his commitment to deficit reduction.
Locking people in a room and hoping that they come up with a plan is counter-intuitive. If 12 people can’t work together, an entire Congress isn’t going to do any better.
It’s time to go back to the drawing board. Start with the premise that any decisions made about the economy by Congress must have a direct correlation to job creation.
If an initiative doesn’t translate into jobs, it goes to the bottom of the agenda.
No pork, no pet projects.
Instead, every day is devoted to job creation. Every discussion about taxes must be applicable to creating an environment that encourages job growth.
Forget about taxing millionaires, forget about wasting money on solar energy bailouts, and forget about giving billions of dollars to corrupt contractors working in Iraq and Afghanistan.
If it adds to the deficit and if it doesn’t create U.S. jobs, they don’t get a dollar.
The majority of Americans has tuned out and could care less about the Super Committee.
But if they knew that every day, Congress would be doing nothing but finding ways to make us more competitive and passing job-generating legislation, they would be paying attention.
And any politician that veered from the job-creation path would find themselves voted out of office. No more hiding behind the white noise of nothingness.
It is time to tell the Super Committee, Congress and the president: "If you aren’t working to create jobs it’s time for you to find a new job yourself."
© 2013 Moneynews. All rights reserved.