Politic365

 
 


Policy

7:42pm December 30, 2012

Fiscal Cliff: Working Minorities and Entrepreneurs Focus on Investments

DownloadedFile-8

Listening to President Obama and the Congress over the past few months tug at the steering wheel while the van heads toward the fiscal cliff, I can’t help but wonder if their social policy agenda does not include”The Black Enterprise Bunch”; those black and Hispanic Americans who work, run their own businesses, and invest in other areas besides a house with a lawn and a white picket fence.

The progress report delivered by Mr. Obama last Friday gave me no further hope that anything of significance would result from budget talks with the House and Senate leadership. Mr. Obama left his apparent major social policy goal, a nation where everyone pays their fair share in taxes and other burdens, essentially intact and has not wavered from tax policy that calls for raising tax rates on the wealthy as the means for getting there.

In comments about the fiscal cliff, leadership in the Congress echoed his social and public policy sentiments. House Assistant Minority Leader James Clyburn, Democrat of South Carolina, has emphasized the unfairness of asking Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security benefits recipients to bear the burden of extended tax cuts for the wealthy. House Financial Services committee member Maxine Waters, Democrat of California, and the committee’s future ranking member has reiterated that tax fairness should be the policy to fund the government’s responsibility for delivering services. Americans, according to Ms. Waters, want all people to pay their fair share and closing loop holes should not be enough.

But while the political rhetoric emphasizes how pots of entitlements should be maintained, whether in the form of social welfare benefits for the poor or tax benefits for the well off, the discussion has not fleshed out social policy for the investor, business owner, or entrepreneur; those who leverage capital, whether self-financed or obtained by borrowing funds, in order to generate income. In short, growth has never been given primary consideration by Democrats or Republicans during the debate, and in order for entrepreneurs and business owners to experience growth in their businesses, the social policy of national economic growth and the appropriate tools that bring it about must always be at the top of the discussion.

Political leadership appears to ignore that, according to the U.S. Department of Labor, 53.2% of Black Americans and 59.5% of Hispanic Americans are employed. As of 2011, approximately 29.2% of Black Americans and 19.5% of Hispanic Americans are employed in management, professional, or related occupations, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Black and Hispanic Americans are also business owners. The United States Bureau of the Census reported that in 2007, there were 1,921,907 Black-owned firms in the United States generating $137 billion in revenues. Hispanics owned 2,259,857 firms in the United States, generating $345 billion in revenues.

These business owners also hire people. The Census Bureau reported that Black-owned firms employed 920,198 workers in 2007 while Hispanic-owned firms employed 1,935,688 workers. The question is, how does a social policy goal of ensuring Medicaid, Medicare, and Social Security are maintained as we know it via a tax policy that taxes people at a certain wealth level promote economic growth millions of minority owned firms that employ millions of people?

The answer is, it doesn’t, with the possible exception of extending the Bush tax cuts for individual households and businesses. Tax cuts for the middle class and small businesses will encourage more spending, the type of consumer spending that spurs demand for goods and services produced by these very minority firms. Fiscal action that encourages derived consumer demand should be the only focus in Washington over the next forty-eight hours.

Hopefully someone in Washington will have the maturity to say, “Hey, someone hit the brakes and everyone else get your hands off of the steering wheel.”



About the Author

Alton Drew
Alton Drew provides advocacy, legal and legislative analysis, and legislative monitoring services for not-for-profit associations and foundations with a particular emphasis on broadband adoption, spectrum, and local community development. Using various social media platforms, Mr. Drew amplifies messages for not-for-profit associations and foundations as part of their online media campaigns. Follow him on Twitter @altondrew; Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/alton.drew.5; or visit him at www.lawandpoliticsofbroadband.com or www.lawandpoliticsofcapital.com.




 
 

 
latina entrepreneurs

How do you push Latinas to be tech entrepreneurs?

This post originally appeared in Más Wired.  Just 1.5% of computing occupations in the country are filled by Latinas, a startling Bureau of Labor Statistics number that illustrates the importance of pushing Latinas into the t...
by Sara Inés Calderón
0

 
 
131223_tom_wheeler_fcc_commissioners_ap_328

Designated Entity Rules and Secondary Market Transactions Should Be a Top-line Priority for the FCC

America’s tech and telecom sectors account for one-sixth of the nation’s GDP, and in an increasingly digital economy, spectrum is a vital resource for economic growth and entrepreneurial opportunity. This is particu...
by Kristal High
0

 
 
flags4

Election 2014: Governor Christie, McDonnell, and Scott – What Do They All Have In Common?

Three Things You May Not Know About Voters of Color in New Jersey, Virginia, and Florida. What does Governors Chris Christie, Bob McDonnell, and Rick Scott all have in common? They’re all from states rocked by scandal? No. Th...
by Kirk Clay
3

 

Advertisement
 
african-american-history-month

National African American History Month 2014: Civil Rights in America

Progress in America has never come easy. Through centuries of struggle and hard-won victories, our country has been shaped by generations of Americans who believed this could be the Nation envisioned in our founding principles ...
by Guest Contributor
1

 
 
computer_science

First Class Digital Citizenship: Clarion Call of the Modern Civil Rights Movement

MMTC has a long history of advocating for greater diversity and inclusion in the technology and telecommunications sectors, and they’re sure to pursue first class digital citizenship among its top priorities in 2014 and beyon...
by Kristal High
0

 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>