A letter from the Boss:
To All My Valued Employees,
There have been some rumblings around the office
about the future of this company, and more specifically,
your job. As you know, the economy has changed for
the worse and presents many challenges. However, the
good news is this: The economy doesn't pose a threat
to your job. What does threaten your job however, is
the changing political landscape in this country.
However, let me tell you some little tidbits of fact which
might help you decide what is in your best interests.
First, while it is easy to spew rhetoric that casts
employers against employees, you have to understand
that for every business owner there is an untold Story.
This back story is often neglected and overshadowed
by what you see and hear. Sure, you see me park my
Mercedes outside. You've seen my big home at last
years Christmas party. I'm sure; all these flashy icons
of luxury conjure up some idealized thoughts about
However, what you don't see is the BACK STORY :
I started this company 28 years ago. At that time, I
lived in a 300 square foot studio apartment for 3 years.
My entire living apartment was converted into an office
so I could put forth 100% effort into building a company,
which by the way, would eventually employ you.
My diet consisted of Ramen Pride noodles because
every dollar I spent went back into this company. I drove
a rusty Toyota Corolla with a defective transmission. I
didn't have time to date. Often times, I stayed home on
weekends, while my friends went out drinking and
partying. In fact, I was married to my business -- hard
work, discipline, and sacrifice.
Meanwhile, my friends got jobs. They worked 40 hours a
week and made a modest $50K a year and spent every
dime they earned. They drove flashy cars and lived in
expensive homes and wore fancy designer clothes.
Instead of hitting the Nordstrom's for the latest hot
fashion item, I was trolling through the discount store
extracting any clothing item that didn't look like it was
birthed in the 70's. My friends refinanced their mortgages
and lived a life of luxury. I, however, did not. I put my
time, my money, and my life into a business with a vision
that eventually, someday, I too, will be able to afford
luxuries my friends supposedly had.
So, while you physically arrive at the office at 9am,
mentally check in at about noon, and then leave at 5pm,
I don't. There is no "off" button for me. When you leave
the office, you are done and you have a weekend all to
yourself. I unfortunately do not have the freedom. I eat,
and breathe this company every minute of the day. There
is no rest. There is no weekend. There is no happy hour.
Every day this business is attached to my hip like a 1 year
old special-needs child. You, of course, only see the
fruits of that garden -- the nice house, the Mercedes, the
vacations... you never realize the Back Story and the
sacrifices I've made.
Affirmative Action came into being, in order to right the
wrongs of some previous generation. Forced me to
go out and look for people based on their skin color.
And, so I did. What did I find? I found a bunch of
people who had no qualifications to work at my
company. I hired them because the government made
me to do it. What I got? Bunch of lazy whiners and
complainers who stole everything including switch
plates and light bulbs.
Now, the economy is falling apart and I, the guy that
made all the right decisions and saved his money, have
to bailout all the people who didn't. The people that
overspent their paychecks suddenly feel entitled to the
same luxuries that I earned and sacrificed a decade of
my life for.
Yes, business ownership has is benefits but the price
I've paid is steep and not without wounds.
Unfortunately, the cost of running this business, and
employing you, is starting to eclipse the threshold of
marginal benefit and let me tell you why:
I am being taxed to death and the government thinks
I don't pay enough. I have state taxes. Federal taxes.
Property taxes. Sales and use taxes. Payroll taxes.
Workers compensation taxes. Unemployment taxes.
Taxes on taxes. I have to hire a tax man to manage all
these taxes and then guess what? I have to pay taxes
for employing him. Government mandates and
regulations and all the accounting that goes with it,
now occupy most of my time. On Oct 15th, I wrote a
check to the US Treasury for $288,000 for quarterly
taxes. You know what my "stimulus" check was?
Zero. Nada. Zilch.
The question I have is this: Who is stimulating the
economy? Me, the guy who has provided 14 people
good paying jobs and serves over 2,200,000 people
per year with a flourishing business? Or, the single
mother sitting at home pregnant with her fourth child
waiting for her next welfare check? Obviously,
government feels the latter is the economic stimulus
of this country.
The fact is, if I deducted (Read: Stole) 50% of your
paycheck you'd quit and you wouldn't work here. I
mean, why should you? That's nuts. Who wants to get
rewarded only 50% of their hard work? Well, I agree
which is why your job is in jeopardy.
Here is what many of you don't understand ... to
stimulate the economy you need to stimulate what
runs the economy. Had suddenly government
mandated to me that I didn't need to pay taxes,
guess what? Instead of depositing that $288,000 into
the Washington black-hole, I would have spent it,
hired more employees, and generated substantial
economic growth. My employees would have
enjoyed the wealth of that tax cut in the form of
promotions and better salaries. But you can forget it
When you have a comatose man on the verge of
death, you don't defibrillate and shock his thumb
thinking that will bring him back to life, do you?
Or, do you defibrillate his heart? Business is at the
heart of America and always has been. To restart
it, you must stimulate it, not kill it. Suddenly, the
power brokers in Washington believe the poor of
America are the essential drivers of the American
economic engine. Nothing could be further from
the truth and this is the type of change you can keep.
So where am I going with all this?
It's quite simple.
If any new taxes are levied on me, or my company,
my reaction will be swift and simple. I'll fire you
and your coworkers. You can then plead with the
government to pay for your mortgage, your SUV,
and your child's future. Frankly, it isn't my problem
Then, I will close this company down, move to
another country, and retire. You see, I'm done. I'm
done with a country that penalizes the productive
and gives to the unproductive. My motivation to
work and to provide jobs will be destroyed, and
with it, will be my citizenship.
So, if you lose your job, it won't be at the hands
of the economy; it will be at the hands of a political
hurricane that swept through this country, steamrolled
the constitution, and will have changed its landscape
forever. If that happens, you can find me sitting on a
beach, retired, and with no employees to worry about....
Signed, THE BOSS
"The problem with socialism is that you eventually
run out of other people's money."
(W1BSV + Brass Rat '57 EE)
Click to see the full signature.