We're hearing a lot about how big government needs to bail out the nation or the world will end as we know it. To date, the billions of dollars already spent haven't done much except feather a few political and corporate nests and expand bloated, intrusive government even more.
Perhaps, not suprisingly, the real heroes of this worldwide recesssion will end up being small business owners, the moms and pops who keep the capitalist engine chugging. And it's no different in Vermont.
For it to return to complete health, our state's economic recovery depends very heavily on the small business person - yes, the mom and pop shops out there. You may not believe it, or you may not care to admit it, but business is what makes our world go 'round - it ain't government.
This message is very clear in the newly updated "Vermont Small Business Profile" released last week by the Office of Advocacy of the U.S. Small Business Administration.
The most recent data show that the state has 18,937 small employers (they're actually giants in our opinion!), and they employ 63.5 percent of the state's workforce.
"Vermont depends on small business for jobs and economic growth," said Shawne McGibbon of the SBA's Office of Advocacy recently. "During this time of financial stress and economic instability, policymakers need to remember that the state's small businesses provide the economic base for its families and communities."
SBA's data shows that small businesses created 51.7 percent of the state's net new jobs from 2004 to 2005 (latest year available) - not government, not grants, not make-work projects. Vermont's economy depends on the health of its small businesses as does the entire national economy. You should be helping business, not hindering its operation with taxes and regulations.
McGibbon also said that "The U.S. has slightly more than 6 million small employers, or 99.7 percent of all employer firms, and they provide 50.4 percent of its private sector employment. These firms created 78.9 percent of the nation's net new jobs from 2004 to 2005, and they generated more than half of the private non-farm gross domestic product.
It's just like when we were kids and we did something very stupid. Who helped us out? Yup, mom and pop to the rescue - again.