No Government, No Force

To All My Valued Employees

To All My Valued Employees,

There have been some rumblings around the office about the future of
this company and, more specifically, your job. As you know, the economy
has changed  for the worse and presents many challenges. However, the
good news is this: The economy doesn’t pose a threat to your job. What
does threaten your job however, is the changing political landscape in
this country.

However, let me tell you some little tidbits of fact which might help
you decide what is in your best interest.

First, while it is easy to spew rhetoric that casts employers against
employees, you have to understand that, for every business owner, there
is a Back Story. This back story is often neglected and overshadowed by
what you see and hear. Sure, you see me park my Mercedes outside. You’ve
seen my big home at last year’s Christmas party. I’m sure; all these
flashy icons of luxury conjure up some idealized thoughts about my life.
However, what you don’t see is the BACK STORY:

I started this company 28 years ago. At that time, I lived in a 300
square foot studio apartment for 3 years. My entire living apartment was
converted into an office so I could put forth 100% effort into building
a company, which by the way, would eventually employ you.

My diet consisted of Ramen Pride noodles because every dollar I saved
went  back into this company. I drove a rusty Toyota Corolla with a
defective transmission. I didn’t have time to date. Often times, I
stayed home on weekends, while my friends went out drinking and
partying. In fact, I was married to my business — hard work,
discipline, and sacrifice.

Meanwhile, my friends got jobs. They worked 40 hours a week and made a
modest $50K a year and spent every dime they earned. They drove flashy
cars and lived in expensive homes and wore fancy designer clothes.
Instead of hitting the Nordstrom’s for the latest hot fashion item, I
was trolling through the discount store extracting any clothing item
that didn’t look like it was birthed in the 70’s. My friends refinanced
their mortgages and lived a life of luxury.  I, however, did not. I put
my time, my money, and my life into a business with a vision that
eventually, some day, I too, will be able to afford these luxuries my
friends supposedly had.

So, while you physically arrive at the  office at 9am, mentally check in
at about noon, and then leave at 5pm, I don’t. There is no “off” button
for me. When you leave the office, you are done and you have a weekend
all to yourself. I  unfortunately do not have the freedom. I eat, and
breathe this  company every minute of the day. There is no rest. There
is no weekend. There is no happy hour. Every day this business is
attached to my hip like a 1 year old special-needs child. You, of
course, only see the fruits of that garden — the nice house, the
Mercedes, the vacations… you never realize the Back Story and the
sacrifices I’ve made.

Now, the economy is falling apart and I, the guy that made all the right
decisions and saved his money, have to bail-out all the people who
didn’t. The people who overspent their paychecks suddenly feel entitled
to the same luxuries that I earned and sacrificed more than a decade of
my life for.

Yes, business ownership has is benefits but the price I’ve paid is steep
and not without wounds.

Unfortunately, the cost of running this business, and employing you, is
starting to eclipse the threshold of marginal benefit and let me tell
you why:

I am being taxed to death and the government thinks I don’t pay enough.
I have state taxes. Federal taxes. Property taxes. Sales and use taxes.
Payroll taxes. Workers compensation taxes. Unemployment taxes. Taxes on
taxes. I have to hire a tax man to manage all these taxes and then guess
what? I have to pay taxes for employing him. Government mandates and
regulations and all the accounting that goes with it, now occupy most of
my time.  On Oct 15th, I wrote a check to the US  Treasury for $288,000
for quarterly taxes. You know what my “stimulus” check was? Zero.. Nada.

The question I have is this: Who is stimulating the economy? Me, the guy
who has provided 14 people good paying jobs and serves over 2,200,000
people per year with a flourishing business? Or the single mother,
sitting at home pregnant with her fourth child waiting for her next
welfare check? Obviously, government feels the latter is the real
economic stimulus of this country.

The fact is, if I deducted (Read: Stole) 50% of your paycheck you’d quit
and you wouldn’t work here. I mean, why should you? That’s nuts. Who
wants to get rewarded only 50% of their hard work? Well, I agree, which
is why your job is in jeopardy.

Here is what many of you don’t understand … to stimulate the economy
you need to stimulate what runs the economy. Had suddenly, the
government mandated  to me that I didn’t need to pay taxes, guess what?
Instead of  depositing that $288,000 into the Washington black-hole, I
would have spent it, hired more employees, and generated substantial
economic growth. My employees would have enjoyed the wealth of that tax
cut in the form of promotions and better salaries. But – you can forget
it now.

When you have a comatose man on the verge of death, you don’t
defibrillate and shock his thumb, thinking that will bring him back to
life, do you? Or, do you defibrillate his heart? Business is at the
heart of America and always has  been. To restart it, you must stimulate
it, not kill it. Suddenly, the power brokers in Washington believe the
poor of America are the essential drivers of the American economic
engine. Nothing could be further from the truth; this is the type of
change YOU can keep.

So where am I going with all this?

It’s quite simple.

If any new taxes are levied on me, or my  company, my reaction will be
swift and simple.  I’ll fire you.  I’ll fire your co-workers. You can
then plead with the government to pay for your mortgage, your SUV, and
your child’s future. Frankly, it isn’t my problem any more.

Then, I  will close this company down, move to another country, and
retire. You see, I’m done. I’m done with a country that penalizes the
productive and gives to the unproductive.  My motivation to work, and to
provide jobs, will be destroyed and, with it, will be my citizenship.

So, if you lose your job, it won’t be at the hands of the economy; it
will be at the hands of a political hurricane that swept through this
country, steam-rolled the constitution, and will have changed its
landscape forever. If that happens, you can find me sitting on a beach,
retired, and with no employees to worry about….

Signed,  THE  BOSS

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