Interesting Email

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West Chester
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Interesting Email

Post by West Chester » Tue May 05, 2009 6:43 pm

To All My Valued Employees.

There have been some rumblings around the office about the future of this company, and more specifically, your jobs. 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 a back 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 my life.

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 forth100% effort into building a company, which by the way, would eventually employ you.

My diet consisted of Ramen Pride noodles because every dollar I saved 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 Goodwill store extracting any clothing item that didn't look like it was birthed in the 50'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, some day, I too, will be able to afford these 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.

Now, the economy is falling apart and I, the guy that made all the right decisions and saved his money, have to bail-out all the people who didn't. The people who 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 now.

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 fire you. I fire your co-workers. 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 any more.

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.

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, Your boss
If said posting of nude women includes her holding fish AND a large set of antlers (Non-photoshopped), then it can stay. Otherwise, No nudity on the Drake board. Skimpy? OK. Side-boob? Approved. -nemo

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Outcast
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Re: Interesting Email

Post by Outcast » Tue May 05, 2009 8:50 pm

So I suppose this means I'm not gonna get the rest of my subscription now that Nemo's decided to retire huh?
Outcast's initial response to you is just the sort of mean, immediate, unnecessary, gatekeeper-bullshit newbie-bashing that I've come to hate on my own board. But then, somehow, miraculously, in only six posts, you managed to earn it. -nemo


"Around here service is not just another six letter word." -Gaper's Pimp

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ditchdoc
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Re: Interesting Email

Post by ditchdoc » Tue May 05, 2009 9:17 pm

To My Beloved Boss,

Exactly what we thought you'd do. That's why we got together and put out a contract one your selfish ass. Enjoy your short retirement.

The People Who Kept You In Business
Ignorance is curable. Stupidity is forever.

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Rhyacophila
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Re: Interesting Email

Post by Rhyacophila » Tue May 05, 2009 9:54 pm

ditchdoc wrote:To My Beloved Boss,

Exactly what we thought you'd do. That's why we got together and put out a contract one your selfish ass. Enjoy your short retirement.

The People Who Kept You In Business
If you kept him in business you wouldn't be writing the letter :coffee
I guess being fat and ugly isn't enough for the powder monkey - hes got to be an asshole too. (RvW)

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ditchdoc
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Re: Interesting Email

Post by ditchdoc » Tue May 05, 2009 10:35 pm

Uh, it was, allegedly, taxation that made him quit. Not his employees.
Ignorance is curable. Stupidity is forever.

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West Chester
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Re: Interesting Email

Post by West Chester » Wed May 06, 2009 1:21 pm

I believe the bigger picture is that Washington believes that the economic stimulus of this country is the poor spending a few extra bucks they get in their pocket as opposed to the small businesses who actually employee those poor and middle income Americans.

In essence, if the taxes get high enough people will not have the incentive to start up those businesses (which something like 50% fail in the first year) and they too will just sit around and wait for government handouts. Unfortuantly, a death spiral will occur where less and less businesses are around to pay higher and higher taxes and the government will face huge budget deficits.
If said posting of nude women includes her holding fish AND a large set of antlers (Non-photoshopped), then it can stay. Otherwise, No nudity on the Drake board. Skimpy? OK. Side-boob? Approved. -nemo

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Upsetter
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Re: Interesting Email

Post by Upsetter » Wed May 06, 2009 1:58 pm

First off, someone else posted this chain letter a while back; its nothing new.

Secondly, 40% of the stimulus bill, or well over 300bil of the total 780bil went to tax cuts. Most of those tax cuts went to small businesses and individuals in the working lower to lower middle classes (20K to 50K). I even got a small tax cut making more than that.

Third, did you know that 70% of our GDP relies on consumption by the average american? Moreover, that 20% of the global GDP relies on teh same? So, yes, putting money into peoples' pockets is critical, esp when that money is then spent and goes to businesses that have seen dramatic dropoffs in demand. It doesnt help much when you give money to someone who stuffs it under the mattress for when the markets turn around and he can start speculating successfully again. All the private capital that is sitting on the sidelines right now, worried about excessive risk, is a big part of the world's economic woes right now.

Fourth, I think you need to do some research on the myriad of incentives out there to encourage small business start ups. Both the feds and just about every state, including mine, which is about as miserly as they come, provide numerous tax breaks, loan discounts, favorable credit rates, free classes in accounting and marketing, etc. to help start ups. You just have to put forth the effort to look around and see whats available to you.

What both the stimulus and the proposed budget threaten are not dramatically raised taxes nor penalizing small businesses, as the dude bitching in the letter suggests, but running large fiscal deficits and growing debt to countries like China. That risk is real and I too am worried about it. The guys in charge felt this bank crisis was serious enough to bring the whole thing down; Im not qualified to judge, just glad they did something about it, and what they did appears to be working.

FWIW, Obama isnt going to raise your taxes, he isnt going to raise my taxes and he isnt going to increase tax burdens on small businesses. The only folks who will see marginal increases are those who benefitted the most from the past 20+ year financial orgy that landed us in this mess in the first place. If the guy who is bitching in this letter is making a half mil a year off this business he is threatening to close, he is threatening to close it cause BO is coming for a little more of that money he makes off the top, not because BO is taxing small business into oblivion.

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ditchdoc
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Re: Interesting Email

Post by ditchdoc » Wed May 06, 2009 2:51 pm

Upsetter,

I believe and agree with what you've stated. But there is a particular element in our populace that just doesn't want to hear it. Just read the book "What's the Matter With Kansas" it explains a lot of what I'm talking about. I really think a lot of folks just want to believe the worst: people, government, the president, congress, you, me, themselves. The erosion of confidence in America is at the root of many of our problems. This country may not be what it once was, but it's still the place to live.
Ignorance is curable. Stupidity is forever.

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Rhyacophila
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Re: Interesting Email

Post by Rhyacophila » Wed May 06, 2009 2:59 pm

Upsetter wrote:...FWIW, Obama isnt going to raise your taxes, he isnt going to raise my taxes and he isnt going to increase tax burdens on small businesses. The only folks who will see marginal increases are those who benefitted the most from the past 20+ year financial orgy that landed us in this mess in the first place. If the guy who is bitching in this letter is making a half mil a year off this business he is threatening to close, he is threatening to close it cause BO is coming for a little more of that money he makes off the top, not because BO is taxing small business into oblivion.
FWIW,

The guy makin half a Mil is payin close to 70K right now IF he has a clever tax attorney. You want more than 70K from him?

How much you payin? (rhetorical)

I'm guessing that you, me and ditch aint puttin in 30K combined.

How much is enough from one individual? One who is also employing others and contributing payroll taxes, not counted above? (not rhetorical)
I guess being fat and ugly isn't enough for the powder monkey - hes got to be an asshole too. (RvW)

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Upsetter
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Re: Interesting Email

Post by Upsetter » Wed May 06, 2009 3:40 pm

Rhyacophila wrote: The guy makin half a Mil is payin close to 70K right now IF he has a clever tax attorney. You want more than 70K from him?

How much is enough from one individual? One who is also employing others and contributing payroll taxes, not counted above? (not rhetorical)
I think 70K is way off the mark. This hypothetical guy is more likely paying a little less than 200K right now if his take home is ~500K, perhaps less if he is expensing everything under the sun and taking accelerated depreciation schedules on a bunch of quasi-business capital he is also personally using.

Unless, you and ditch make nada, Im sure we pay more than 30K collectively. I pay ~20K myself. Worst case scenario the hypothetical guy is looking at closer to 250K if all the proposed tax increases come true. You and I wont see any increase as they start at incomes >100K and that is just for the social security tax, which is capped at 100K, not income tax, income tax increases start at 250K.

Very likely, the small business itself wont see any tax increases, may even see them go down, dont know for sure. There is a diff in the tax world b/n revenues generated by a business that go back into it (expenses, capital improvements/acquisition, payroll, etc) and revenues that are take home pay for the owner, CEO, BOD's, etc. For example, BO lowered the payroll tax.

I think the answer to your question about how much is enough is what is needed from every citizen to run a responsible govt that provides the services we, as an electorate demand, without running up deficits. If you have more to contribute because you have benefitted more from the system of commerce our govt goes a long way in supporting, including waging dozens of wars since WWII, you should contribute more. The specifics of what that means is the subject of dispute by many and I cant say that I have an exact figure.

IMO, the tax code that exists now and everything that BO has proposed seem reasonable to me. Perhaps overly complicated, but reasonable. Also IMO, Govt SHOULD be paygo. My state is paygo, we havent run a deficit in a long time. We started slashing budgets in anticipation of tax revenue shortfalls before it became a fiscal reality. It would be wonderful if all govts would do this, but they dont and that sucks and is irresponsible. On that account, Im sure we agree.

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Rhyacophila
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Re: Interesting Email

Post by Rhyacophila » Thu May 07, 2009 11:02 am

Upsetter wrote:
Rhyacophila wrote: The guy makin half a Mil is payin close to 70K right now IF he has a clever tax attorney. You want more than 70K from him?

How much is enough from one individual? One who is also employing others and contributing payroll taxes, not counted above? (not rhetorical)
I think 70K is way off the mark. This hypothetical guy is more likely paying a little less than 200K right now if his take home is ~500K, perhaps less if he is expensing everything under the sun and taking accelerated depreciation schedules on a bunch of quasi-business capital he is also personally using.

Unless, you and ditch make nada, Im sure we pay more than 30K collectively. I pay ~20K myself. Worst case scenario the hypothetical guy is looking at closer to 250K if all the proposed tax increases come true. You and I wont see any increase as they start at incomes >100K and that is just for the social security tax, which is capped at 100K, not income tax, income tax increases start at 250K.

Very likely, the small business itself wont see any tax increases, may even see them go down, dont know for sure. There is a diff in the tax world b/n revenues generated by a business that go back into it (expenses, capital improvements/acquisition, payroll, etc) and revenues that are take home pay for the owner, CEO, BOD's, etc. For example, BO lowered the payroll tax.

I think the answer to your question about how much is enough is what is needed from every citizen to run a responsible govt that provides the services we, as an electorate demand, without running up deficits. If you have more to contribute because you have benefitted more from the system of commerce our govt goes a long way in supporting, including waging dozens of wars since WWII, you should contribute more. The specifics of what that means is the subject of dispute by many and I cant say that I have an exact figure.

IMO, the tax code that exists now and everything that BO has proposed seem reasonable to me. Perhaps overly complicated, but reasonable. Also IMO, Govt SHOULD be paygo. My state is paygo, we havent run a deficit in a long time. We started slashing budgets in anticipation of tax revenue shortfalls before it became a fiscal reality. It would be wonderful if all govts would do this, but they dont and that sucks and is irresponsible. On that account, Im sure we agree.

OK, So I put in about 15K with the standard deduction (no clever accounting).

Now if you're the guy making 500K and payin 200K, are you happy that 35 of 100 of your filing peers are contributing nothing, and asking you to pay more? That 50 of 100 of your filing peers are contributing 5 to 80K, are assured no increase, and are asking you to pay more, even though you are paying payroll taxes above and beyond your personal taxes.

I wouldn't like it, and would fight hard against it.

If in that situation, I would consider selling my small enterprise to the corporate malaise and get out. (talk about sucking the ingenuity out of America)
I guess being fat and ugly isn't enough for the powder monkey - hes got to be an asshole too. (RvW)

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Upsetter
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Re: Interesting Email

Post by Upsetter » Thu May 07, 2009 12:09 pm

Rhyacophila wrote:Now if you're the guy making 500K and payin 200K, are you happy that 35 of 100 of your filing peers are contributing nothing, and asking you to pay more? That 50 of 100 of your filing peers are contributing 5 to 80K, are assured no increase, and are asking you to pay more, even though you are paying payroll taxes above and beyond your personal taxes.

I wouldn't like it, and would fight hard against it.

If in that situation, I would consider selling my small enterprise to the corporate malaise and get out. (talk about sucking the ingenuity out of America)
For my part, I wouldnt bitch about how much I pay and I surely wouldnt bitterly sell out in an attempt to revolt from my tax burden. I think that is a bit over the top and certainly counter productive. Instead I would insist on honest and efficient govt putting my tax dollars to their best use. BO's promise to weed out govt waste thru transparency, oversight, and monitoring is one I take very seriously. I have several PI websites in my favorites list that do just that with the budget, both congressionally and at the admin agency level.

As far as all those who arent contributing much, or as much as I am, I wouldnt feel bitter cause even after suffering a higher tax rate I still take home a quarter mil or better a year. A bunch of those people are living off 10K-15K a year, at or below the single person poverty line. I know what that is like, been there and done that. Many people living in that situation arent there because they are lazy, they are there because they are working their way thru school (that would be me for almost ten years, never made more than 20K/yr, and when I did for 2 yrs b/n undergrad & grad I still lived like a pauper to save up), had an accident that ruined their work potential, or have not availed themselves of a better education so they toil away at dead end low wage jobs that you must admit do need somebody to do them. That is not to mention the unfortunate plight of familes whose parents work well over a 100hrs a week for less than 30K take home, creating the destructive family dynamics that keep so many people living life that way.

I guess if I was making a half mil a year and owned my own business, I would feel privileged to be so successful in this great country, despite the hard work it took to get there. I know full well that thousands of others work just as hard and come up way shorter than that. Id be sitting on top of the world. I would see my proportionally larger tax burden as an opportunity to help others. I am a bit of a bleeding heart that way. However, I again return to demanding efficient and productive govt programs designed to accomplish those goals. I deplore govt waste, or waste of any sort, something I picked up during the ten years it took me to earn less than our hypothetical guy takes home in one. I also deplore govt not aggressively weeding out fraud or abuse of their programs designed to help people. However, I am familiar enough with their efforts to do just that to know they are aggressively investigating and prosecuting fraud alot more than people think.

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