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Gridlock is good!

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Leviathan needs to be rolled back, but the next best thing is stalemate.

It may not be pretty, but the lesson from Washington seems to be that gridlock is good – at least for middle market companies.

Recent surveys of middle market executives show almost uniformly that optimism for growth is high, and getting higher each quarter.  In fact, the most recent survey by professional services firm PwC indicated something they’ve never seen before – the level of concern for every single government-related barrier to growth cited by executives went down last quarter.  Every one.

Now, I don’t know about you, but that strikes me as a pretty telling sign. 

As business owners try to explain again and again, what they need to compete and succeed is a level of certainty from the government. Sure, pretty much everybody would like to see better policies: lower (or more rational) taxation, an easing of the regulatory burden, rational immigration policies, better education, etc.  But clearly the most negative aspect of governmental policy is a sense of uncertainty that forces executives to guess at what’s coming next, and that deters new investment in people, technology, physical plant, new products. 

Again, the status quo is unacceptable and still constitutes a drag on growth, but the bottom line is that a congress that doesn’t do anything may just be the thing we can hope for.

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Angus DuBois
Angus DuBois
Angus DuBois is the nom de plume of an entrepreneur of 20 years who, in cowardly fashion, prefers to keep his/her business identity a secret. Comments can be forwarded to angus@nexxuspublishing.com.

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