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Madam Speaker, the taxacrats are at it again, cooking up new taxes to try to pay for the government takeover of health care. This time they want to raise taxes on small businesses. The so-called rich the taxacrats are targeting are America's entrepreneurs, the engine of the American economy.
Madam Speaker, taxes are the root of all Federal mischief. Businesses with less than 500 employees produce half of America's gross national product and account for the majority of our jobs. The taxacrats want to force these small businesses to buy health insurance for all of their employees, whether they can afford it or not. And if they don't, they will have to pay stiff fines, and of course, that will kill jobs.
The taxacrats also want to take $540 billion in taxes out of budgets of small businesses to pay for their nationalized health care boondoggle. Small businesses need a tax break, not a tax hike.
Madam Speaker, it has always been the American entrepreneurial spirit creating new small businesses that have made this country work. There is an ebb and flow of businesses closing and new ones opening up. But these days, more are closing than opening. By the end of May, commercial bankruptcies were up 52 percent this year compared to the first five months of last year.
Eva Christian owns a popular European-style restaurant called Cafe Boulevard in Dayton, Ohio. She is one of the 8,300 businesses that have already filed for bankruptcy protection this year. Eva is trying to keep her cafe open and her workers employed while she tries to work things out with creditors. She says that the rising cost of food and energy combined with local unemployment have made it tough because her regular customers don't come around anymore. She cannot afford to be forced to give health care coverage to her employees, and her ability to bounce back will be smothered by the taxacrat not only health care proposals but new taxes on small businesses. So she will just close up.
Making matters worse, the high cost of energy is making everything cost more. The taxacrats refuse to expand the drilling for oil and natural gas here at home that would bring not only prices down but create millions of American jobs and not send them to Saudi Arabia. They want to kill the coal industry that supplies most of our electricity. They don't want to build more nuclear power plants that provide limitless clean energy. Their solution is to tax energy consumption on all Americans. All that will do is decrease the energy supply and cause energy costs to go up. There is no transition fuel and no energy source to transition to for at least 10 more years. That's not going to power our industries or fill anybody's gas tank so they can even get to work.
When the government took over General Motors and put it into bankruptcy, the small businesses nationwide that supplied the auto industry took a big hit. Seat belt manufacturers, floor mats, rearview mirrors, spark plugs, windshield wiper blades and electrical wires and washers, including hoses, belts and gaskets, all of the parts and pieces that come together to make automobiles, were losing jobs.
When big business files for bankruptcy, it affects the small businesses that supply them--small businesses, as you may recall, Madam Speaker, that got no bailout. They weren't important enough to keep from failing or politically influential with this administration, so they just went out of business. When the new Government Motors put hundreds of their dealerships out of business, it hurt the local strip malls, restaurants, dry cleaners, grocery stores, sandwich shops, gas stations, on and on, and that causes financial struggles for the industries who supply these small businesses.
Madam Speaker, America's small businesses offer the best hope for new job creation. The government needs to get out of their way. Stop sucking the oxygen out of the economy with higher taxes and higher energy costs. Let America's entrepreneurs keep more of their own money to pull the country out of this mess. That says it in a nutshell: let them keep more of their own money.
Taxacrats want to control America's economic engine; however, they want to seize the wealth created in this country and spend it on their special friends and special interest groups. America's economy doesn't work that way. No economy ever has. If the government seizes the wealth it created, that these businesses created, however, it kills any incentive to create wealth. Just ask the former Soviet Union. Why do you think they went out of business? Why would anybody in their right mind invest money, blood, sweat, and tears to build a company from scratch only to hand the fruits of their labor over to the government? Governments don't create anything. They just seize it. They don't create jobs. They create taxpayer programs.
America's economy is the most successful in the history of the world, and the reason is easy to figure out: freedom. Freedom to create and grow an idea into a company, a dream to make it a multinational corporation. It makes no sense at all to kill the greatest economy on God's green earth, along with the freedom and liberty that created it. You cannot help the poor by economically killing the rich. It's been said, You don't make the poor rich by making the rich poor. Madam Speaker, taxes are the root of all Federal mischief.
And that's just the way it is.
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