Tag Archives: Small business

The small business myth

BOOK REVIEW

Lobbying America: The Politics of Business from Nixon to NAFTA, Author: Benjamin C Waterhouse.
The Land of Enterprise: A Business History of the United States, Author: Benjamin C Waterhouse.

By Benjamin C Waterhouse – Although love for small business may seem like a timeless feature of capitalism, the widespread belief that small entrepreneurs hold the keys to economic revival is relatively recent.

A key moment in the modern myth-making around small business came in 1978. That’s when MIT economist David Birch published claims – which he repeated in testimony before Congress – that small firms had accounted for 80 per cent of all new employment opportunities between 1968 and 1976. Critics quickly pointed out that Birch’s findings were quite wrong, largely because he defined firm size according to how many employees worked in a given location (like a branch office, factory, or store), not how many the firm employed altogether. In fact, most job creation, in the 1970s and today, comes from a small number of very fast-growing firms, while most small firms either fail (killing jobs) or remain small.

Birch later admitted that the 80 per cent figure was a ‘silly number’, but the claims took firm root in popular mythology and political rhetoric by the 1980s.

Historically, however, ‘small business’ did not exist in any meaningful sense until the advent of ‘Big Business’ in the late 19th century. Before the emergence of large, vertically integrated, and diversified corporations, ‘small business’ was simultaneously everywhere and nowhere, and no one spoke on its behalf. more>

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CONGRESS WATCH Water Rule Adds to Flood of Regulation: EPA’s Latest Overreach, Karen Kerrigan, sbecouncil.org Once More, Economy Exhibits Weakness, Nelson D. Schwartz, NYTimes.com Committee Exposes Program Duplication at the SBA, House Committee on Small Business/US Congress Democrats, Republicans slam … Continue reading

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CONGRESS WATCH NSBA Survey: Tax Complexity A Major Problem for Small Firms, nsba.biz Committee Examines Burden of Tax Compliance for Small Businesses NSBA Survey: 40% of small firms spend 2 full workweeks on tax compliance, House Committee on Small Business/US … Continue reading

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CONGRESS WATCH Red Tape Rising: Obama’s Regulatory Frenzy, heritage.org Red Tape Rising: Five Years of Regulatory Expansion, James L. Gattuso and Diane Katz, heritage.org Graves Applauds House Passage of the REINS Act, House Committee on Small Business/US Congress Graves Applauds … Continue reading

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CONGRESS WATCH Interest Paid on Gov’t Debt to ‘Dwarf Virtually Every Federal Expense’, Daniel Halper, weeklystandard.com Hanna Subcommittee Exposes Job-Killing Business Regulations and Occupational License Requirements, House Committee on Small Business/US Congress Regulatory Watch, House Committee on Small Business/US Congress … Continue reading

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CONGRESS WATCH The president’s power grab, Jonathan Turley, latimes.com Regulatory Watch, House Committee on Small Business/US Congress Committee Examines Rise of 3D Printing Technology and Small Business Impacts, House Committee on Small Business/US Congress Photo Gallery, House Committee on Small … Continue reading

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CONGRESS WATCH Indications Show 23 Percent Goal For Small Business Contracting Met in 2013, House Committee on Small Business/US Congress The Federal Government Shorts Small Businesses Again, Misses Contracting Goal For Seventh Straight Year, House Committee on Small Business/US Congress … Continue reading

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CONGRESS WATCH CMS Report: Two-Thirds of Small Businesses Will See Premium Hikes under Obamacare, House Committee on Small Business/US Congress Graves Introduces Legislation To Create More Opportunities For Small Businesses, House Committee on Small Business/US Congress Graves Applauds House Passage … Continue reading

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CONGRESS WATCH Study: Small biz health, Tim Devaney, Hill Committee Examines Economic Potential of Wireless Innovations from Small Businesses, House Committee on Small Business/US Congress Regulatory Watch, House Committee on Small Business/US Congress

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CONGRESS WATCH The Budget and Economic Outlook: 2014 to 2024 (pdf), CBO Obamacare’s scorekeepers deliver a game-changer, Dana Milbank, Washington Post Survey: Small Business Employment Off to Slow Start in 2014, Gabrielle Karol, foxbusiness.com Committee Examines Economic Impact of FAA … Continue reading