Obama to Elevate the Small Business Administration to Cabinet Status

 

From the Wall Street Journal this morning:

President Barack Obama said Friday that he will exercise his executive authority to elevate the head of the U.S. Small Business Administration to a cabinet-level position.

The announcement came along with a broader proposal from Mr. Obama to combine the SBA with five other government offices that would become a single, streamlined agency. Under the Obama plan, the SBA administration would no longer be in the Cabinet once the reorganization is complete.

… “As of today, I am elevating the Small Business Administration to a cabinet-level agency,” Mr. Obama said. “Karen Mills, who’s been doing an outstanding job leading that agency, is going to make sure that small-business owners have their own seat at the table in our Cabinet meetings,” he said.

Several media outlets are already reporting this as a testament to the president’s commitment to American business. Personally, I think it’s a rather telling insight into the administration’s complete misapprehension of the nature of commerce. The fact that the president and his staff think the biggest gift that they can provide to American business is making a mind-numbing bureaucracy that’s in the business of handing out other people’s money incrementally less complicated (and really, how many federal employees do we think will get pink slips as a result of the reshuffling?) speaks volumes.

America’s small businesses don’t need a seat at the table in the Cabinet Room. They need everyone who does have a seat at that table to leave them well enough alone.

There are 20 comments.

  1. flownover Inactive

    So it will only be a cabinet level appointment until it’s not ?

    pushme.jpg

    • #1
    • January 13, 2012, at 10:51 AM PDT
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  2. MFQuinn Inactive

    I can think of no more an empty gesture, no greater evidence of impotency and complete misunderstanding of the problem and its solution than to elevate the head of SBA to cabinet-level position. Let’s hope the candidates don’t overlook this allegory for how Obama “solves” problems.

    • #2
    • January 13, 2012, at 11:13 AM PDT
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  3. Douglas Inactive

    This is political pandering, but under an Obama Administration, a Small Business Secretary would primarily busy himself with ladling on new regulations on small business. It’ll help small business the way the Department of Education made schools better.

    • #3
    • January 13, 2012, at 11:27 AM PDT
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  4. Valiuth Member

    I say he just bring back the NRA, because clearly small businesses fail because of too much competition…

    • #4
    • January 13, 2012, at 11:32 AM PDT
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  5. Misthiocracy grudgingly Member

    He’s trying to sell it as an austerity measure. Combining agencies means cutting jobs!

    Yeah, right…

    • #5
    • January 13, 2012, at 11:37 AM PDT
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  6. Nobody's Perfect Inactive

    Streamlined. Streamlined. Where have I heard that before?

    Oh, yes – the Department of Homeland Security.

    Washington’s idea of streamlining is to take a leaky dinghy and turn it into a leaky battleship.

    • #6
    • January 13, 2012, at 11:45 AM PDT
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  7. Sisyphus Member

    The last thing that the SBA does is represent small business to anyone, anywhere. It is the chief mechanism for forcing federal initiatives and regulations to a broader level of the business community, and to nurture fledgling companies into a federal compliance and pay-to-play culture. Every not small company doing business with the federal government has a staff for compliance with small business requirements (which change from contract to contract) and is mentoring some number of small businesses into the crony culture.

    The cost of compliance for both the small subcontractor and their often much larger prime contractors is never calculated. While some teams do an excellent job of matching small companies to requirements, there are also quite a few unhappy stories.

    The American tax payer never sees the costs. The end result is one more stack of perverse incentives replacing the invisible hand.

    • #7
    • January 13, 2012, at 11:50 AM PDT
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  8. Sturt Inactive

    Robert Townsend’s Up the Organization (New York: Knopf, 1970):

    “I was to learn later in life that we tend to meet any new situation by reorganizing; and a wonderful method it can be for creating the illusion of progress while producing confusion, inefficiency, and demoralization”.

    • #8
    • January 13, 2012, at 11:56 AM PDT
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  9. Percival Thatcher

    What the long suffering small businesses of America need is more government…

    Man, that’s deep. It’s like contemplating the cardinality of the set of all cardinal numbers. At a certain point, the synapses of your brain start to fuse.

    • #9
    • January 13, 2012, at 11:59 AM PDT
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  10. Glenn the Iconoclast Member

    C’mon, be fair. According to at least one report, Pres. O. doesn’t pay any attention to half the people in his Cabinet anyway.

    • #10
    • January 14, 2012, at 3:09 AM PDT
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  11. Jimmy Carter Member

    CUT TAXES!

    • #11
    • January 14, 2012, at 3:18 AM PDT
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  12. Liver Pate Inactive

    This is like putting an airbag on a bike when you already wear a helmet, Mr. President.

    • #12
    • January 14, 2012, at 3:55 AM PDT
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  13. MACHO GRANDE' (aka - Chri… Coolidge

    Once again, I’m forced to ask: If SBA elevation was critical in terms of job creation, why wait 3 years to do it? Did it just dawn on Barry that this was a great idea?

    It’s the unguarded cynicism of his office, and his policies, that’s really starting to grate on my senses. Like an unsubsidized cheese grater, the cynicism cuts deeply, frequently, and stings more every time its applied.

    The subsidized cheese grater is still waiting for the prototype to roll off the assembly line. It’s solar powered. And built in Seattle.

    • #13
    • January 14, 2012, at 5:29 AM PDT
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  14. CoolHand Inactive
    Douglas: This is political pandering, but under an Obama Administration, a Small Business Secretary would primarily busy himself with ladling on new regulations on small business. It’ll help small business the way the Department of Education made schools better. · Jan 13 at 10:27am

    THIS!!!

    The last damned thing I need is any more “help” from the government (ANY government).

    At present they all appear to be looking at my hind quarters in much the same way I look at a cheeseburger, which I must say is quite disconcerting.

    That being the case, I most certainly do not want those hungry eyed functionaries endowed with any more power or money, or they may very well “for my own good” me to death.

    I already feel like a passenger on the Titanic, bobbing in the cold water with no hope of rescue. And now they want to go ahead and “help me” by hanging a lead life preserver around my neck. What a choice, freeze to death or drown.

    Oh how I miss the days when nobody knew I existed.

    • #14
    • January 14, 2012, at 5:58 AM PDT
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  15. iWe Reagan
    iWe

    You all miss the real point, which is to provide a much faster track for a company to pay off the government, and at the highest levels so the people in charge benefit: We should dub it the Crony Capitalism Proposal.

    • #15
    • January 14, 2012, at 12:05 PM PDT
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  16. Richard T. Taylor Inactive

    Clearly this is just step one. The real action comes when he appoints a small business czar.

    • #16
    • January 14, 2012, at 12:07 PM PDT
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  17. DrewInWisconsin, Thought Leader Member
    Douglas: [U]nder an Obama Administration, a Small Business Secretary would primarily busy himself with ladling on new regulations on small business. It’ll help small business the way the Department of Education made schools better.

    My thoughts exactly. This is about co-opting a group that the Obamadministration sees as public enemy #1. Their missing: infiltrate and destroy from within.

    • #17
    • January 14, 2012, at 12:11 PM PDT
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  18. DocJay Inactive
    DrewInWisconsin
    Douglas: [U]nder an Obama Administration, a Small Business Secretary would primarily busy himself with ladling on new regulations on small business. It’ll help small business the way the Department of Education made schools better.
    My thoughts exactly. This is about co-opting a group that the Obamadministration sees as public enemy #1. Their missing: infiltrate and destroy from within. · Jan 13 at 11:11am

    Bingo. Keep your enemies closer and we small business owners are the enemy in Obama’s eyes. Darn capitalists!

    Goodness me, I cannot wait to be told to hire a minority LGBT as part of my loan requirements in the future. The 50 employee obamacare disaster will be pared down to 1 employee mandates as well. Where will it end? Who is John Galt?

    • #18
    • January 14, 2012, at 12:35 PM PDT
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  19. Jack Richman Member

    Obama must love small businesses because he made so many of them — out of medium-sized businesses.

    • #19
    • January 15, 2012, at 2:13 AM PDT
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  20. BlueAnt Member

    The announcement came along with a broader proposal from Mr. Obama to combine the SBA with five other government offices that would become a single, streamlined agency.

    Wait, what?

    Under which organizational theory does combining 6 bureaucracies into one, without reducing the scope of their responsibilities or regulating power, create something that can be described as streamlined?

    “Synergy” was such an overused (and under-realized) concept in the 1980’s era of mergers, it became a joke by the early 1990’s. Where synergies and opportunities for savings do exist, they are always a result of eliminating specific red tape and process redundancies. So what is the exact nature of the “streamlining” that can be achieved by this newly conglomerated agency?

    • #20
    • January 16, 2012, at 5:37 AM PDT
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