Tag Archive: Business


The Current State Of U.S. Entrepreneurship Leaves A Lot To Be Desired

 

Business Closings Hold Steady While Business Startups Decline

 

 

” The current state of entrepreneurship is receiving considerable attention as debate simmers around questions of business dynamism in the United States. According to a Gallup article, the U.S. has dropped to 12th among developed nations in terms of business startups. Economists also recently found evidence for this downward trend in business activity and attribute it to diminished incentives for entrepreneurs to start new firms.

  This raises some questions: What exactly are the factors leading to the decline in business activity in the United States? And what can be done to revive the American entrepreneurial environment?

  Economists identify the costs imposed on entrepreneurs by the regulatory environment as one of the most important influences on business dynamism. Where regulations make it difficult to start and operate businesses, entrepreneurs have a difficult time bringing new ideas and innovations to fruition. Promising entrepreneurs who face burdensome regulations might opt out of doing business or decide to take their ideas to countries with more favorable business climates.”

 

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Gun Group: We’ll Pay $15K For Your Carbon Fiber 3-D Printer

 

 

 

 

 

” The age of 3-D printing in carbon fiber has hardly arrived. But the controversy over 3-D printing carbon fiber guns is well under way.

  Starting in the second half of last year, 3-D printing startup MarkForged has been shipping the Mark One, a device it advertises as the world’s first 3-D printer that prints carbon fiber; The Mark One digitally fabricate objects in a material as light as plastic and as strong by some measures as aluminum. But one group isn’t about to receive its Mark One order: Defense Distributed, the non-profit political group that invented the first fully 3-D printed gun nearly two years ago.1″

 

 

     As loathe as we are to provide these anti-liberty people with any publicity , we thought that our readers deserved to meet the staff of this anti-free trade business . The below video introduces you to the company founder Greg Mark and the rest of his staff . It should come as no surprise that the company is based in the “People’s Republic” of Massachusetts .

 

 

 

 

 

 

” Defense Distributed founder Cody Wilson says he pre-ordered the Mark One about a year ago for $8,000, but was told last Friday in a phone call with a MarkForged salesman that the company refuses to sell him one, citing terms of service that disallow private citizens from using the machine to make firearms. So instead, Wilson is offering what he describes as a “bounty” to anyone who can get him MarkForged’s new carbon fiber printer.

“ Anyone who’s got access to one, any reseller, any individual or business or entity that can deliver it to me, I will give them fifteen grand,” says Wilson, who has also released a YouTube video advertising his offer. “I’m going to get this printer. I’m going to make a gun with it. And I’m going to make sure everyone knows it was made with a MarkForged printer.” “

 

   Read more at Wired and if you find MarkForged’s discriminatory policy as objectionable as we do you can let them know it here .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

More Robots Coming To U.S. Factories

 

 

 

” Manufacturers will significantly accelerate their use of robots in U.S. factories over the next decade as they become cheaper and perform more tasks, constraining payroll growth, according to a study out Tuesday.

  The development is expected to dramatically boost productivity and slow the long-standing migration of factories across the globe to take advantage of low-cost labor, says the Boston Consulting Group report.

” Advanced robotics are changing the calculus of manufacturing,” says Harold Sirkin, a senior partner at the management consulting firm.

  A handful of nations, including the U.S. and China, are poised to reap the biggest benefits of the automation wave.

  About 1.2 million additional advanced robots are expected to be deployed in the U.S. by 2025, BCG says. Four industries will lead the shift — computer and electronics products; electrical equipment and appliances; transportation; and machinery — largely because more of their tasks can be automated and they deliver the biggest cost savings.

  About 10% of all manufacturing functions are automated, a share that will rise to nearly 25% in a decade as robotic vision sensors and gripping systems improve, BCG says.

  That’s prodding manufacturers to replace workers. BCG says manufacturers tend to ratchet up their robotics investment when they realize at least a 15% cost savings compared with employing a worker. In electronics manufacturing, it already costs just $4 an hour to use a robot for a routine assembly task vs. $24 for an average worker.”

USA Today

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beloved SF Bookstore Becomes Casualty Of Minimum Wage Hike

 

 

 

 

” Independent bookstores have faced tough times for quite a while. In San Francisco, neighborhood businesses have been passionately protected, so it’s hard to believe that an initiative passed by voters to raise the minimum wage is driving a Mission District bookstore out of business.

  San Francisco’s minimum wage is currently $11.05 an hour. By July of 2018, the minimum wage in San Francisco will be $15 an hour. That increase is forcing Borderlands Bookstore to write its last chapter now.

” Everyone who works here does this because they love books, they love stories, and they love being booksellers,” said book store owner Alan Beatts.

  That’s why store owner Beatts found it so tough to post a sign in the front window that the store is closing. “We’re going to be closing by the end of March,” he said.

  Borderlands was turning a small profit, about $3,000 last year. Then voters approved a hike in the minimum wage, a gradual rise from $10.75 up to $15 an hour.

” And by 2018 we’ll be losing about $25,000 a year,” he said.”

 

 

A message to their customers from the owner’s website:

 

 

” Although the major effects of the increasing minimum wage won’t be felt for a while, we’ve chosen to close now instead of waiting for two reasons.  First, the minimum wage has already increased from $10.74 per hour to $11.05 (as of January 1st) and it will increase again on May 1st to $12.25.  Continuing to pay the higher wage without any corresponding increase in income will expend the store’s cash assets.  In essence, the store will have less money (or inventory) six months from now, so closing sooner rather than later makes better business sense.  But more importantly, keeping up our morale and continuing to serve our customers while knowing that we are going to close has been very painful for all of us over the past three months.  Continuing to do so for even longer would be horrible.  Far better to close at a time of our choosing, keep everyone’s sorrow to a minimum, and then get on with our lives.”

 

 

Simple economics eludes the Left . If it costs more there will be less of it .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The GoPro Drone

 

 

 

Published on Nov 26, 2014

” The wearable video camera maker is developing its own line of consumer multi-rotor helicopter drones to expand from its core business with surfers and other sports enthusiasts.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

From The Conservative Tribune

 

 

 

 

” Liberals are constantly chomping at the bit, waiting for the next founder or CEO of a well known business to admit they have conservative values. As soon as it happens, liberals launch an immediate campaign to boycott the establishment, vowing to never shop there again. Unfortunately, the sheeple they command often take part in these boycotts, which does in fact hurt the business on some level.

  To reverse this trend, it’s important that conservatives stick together and take extra care to patronize restaurants and other businesses who have owners or founders who stand behind their beliefs with such conviction that they’re not scared of potential liberal backlash of proclaiming it.

 Below, you’ll find a list of ten restaurants that liberals absolutely can’t stand. Conservatives should flock to these restaurants on a regular basis. (H/T UniversalFreePress)

1. Chik-fil-A – Remember the huge controversy when the founder announced he supported traditional marriage? These guys and gals are true Christian-conservatives who proudly stand behind their beliefs and haven’t backed down. Go there, a lot.

2. Carl’s Jr. (or Hardee’s) – Founder Carl Karcher may use racy commercials that we don’t all like, but he made liberals froth and foam at the mouth when he announced he was strongly against abortion. Bonus: they make killer burgers!

3. Domino’s Pizza – CEO Tom Monaghan has publicly stated that he’s pro-life, but he doesn’t have a problem with your right to choose toppings.

4. White Castle – Many people reading this may be shocked that White Castle made the list, but it’s the real deal. They recently gave $25k to the Congressional Leadership Fund super PAC, which is linked to several high-profile Republicans.

5. Waffle House – This 24/7 diner donated $100k to Karl Rove’s super PAC American Crossroads. They’ve got our support.

6. Papa John’s – Not only do they have the most popular quarterback in the league helping them sell pizza, but they’ve been labeled conservatives after CEO John Schattner went on record of saying Obamacare was “one big lie.” We agree, sir.

7. Applebee’s – One of America’s favorite go-to joints, Applebee’s recent ruffled liberal feathers by refusing the implementation of Obamacare.

8. Longhorn Steakhouse – One of the first major chains to announce a reduction in staff hours after Obamacare went live, to offset the higher costs of providing healthcare to employees.

9. Olive Garden – Same idea here – they also immediately cut hours to help pay for rising healthcare costs from Obamacare, and liberals weren’t happy about it.

10. Burger King – As soon as they heard about Obama’s $10.10 federal minimum wage mandate, they began to pull out of military bases in response, which infuriated liberals.

   The above list of restaurants should give you enough diversity and choices when choosing somewhere to eat, as it covers dine-in and dine-out options. “

 

Thanks to The Conservative Tribune . Visit them for more fine conservative news .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beretta USA Announces Decision To Move Its Entire Maryland Manufacturing Capabilities To Tennessee

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

From the Beretta USA press release:

 

 

” Beretta U.S.A. Corp., located in Accokeek, Maryland, announced today that it has decided to move its manufacturing capabilities from its existing location to a new production facility that it is building in Gallatin, Tennessee.  The Gallatin facility is scheduled to be opened in mid-2015.  Beretta U.S.A. had previously planned to use the new Gallatin, Tennessee facility for new machinery and production of new products only.

“ During the legislative session in Maryland that resulted in passage of the Firearm Safety Act of 2013, the version of the statute that passed the Maryland Senate would have prohibited Beretta U.S.A. from being able to manufacture, store or even import into the State products that we sell to customers throughout the United States and around the world.  While we were able in the Maryland House of Delegates to reverse some of those obstructive provisions, the possibility that such restrictions might be reinstated in the future leaves us very worried about the wisdom of maintaining a firearm manufacturing factory in the State,” stated Jeff Cooper, General Manager for Beretta U.S.A. Corp.

“ While we had originally planned to use the Tennessee facility for new equipment and for production of new product lines only, we have decided that it is more prudent from the point of view of our future welfare to move the Maryland production lines in their entirety to the new Tennessee facility,” Cooper added. “

 

 

While the Washington Post had this to say …

 

 

” The Italian company had disclosed a $45 million plan this year to expand operations to a new factory near Nashville. But Beretta has decided to go beyond that plan because, a senior executive said, the company is “very worried about the wisdom of maintaining a firearm manufacturing factory” in Maryland.

  Maryland’s new gun restrictions, pushed by Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, Conn., bans 45 types of assault rifles and put in place tough fingerprint, photo identification and training requirements. Magazines are limited to 10 rounds.

  A version of the legislation that passed the state Senate “would have prohibited Beretta ­USA from being able to manufacture, store or even import into the State products that we sell to customers throughout the United States and around the world,” the company said.

  Jeff Reh, a spokesman for Beretta USA, said in an interview that executives had become increasingly worried that future legislative sessions could end more “disastrously” for the company. “We wanted to control our own destiny,” he said. “

 

 

     It never ceases to amaze us that the politicians always seem to believe that they operate in a vacuum , that there is no alternative save to do as they command , even while the market continues to demonstrate endlessly that foolish , naive , “feel good” legislation comes with a price tag … that of lost jobs , lost revenue and lost taxes . Good for Tennessee , good for Beretta …

 

 

 

 

 

 

China’s Li Keqiang Warns Investors To Prepare For Wave Of Bankruptcies

 

 

 

 

” China is braced for a wave of industrial bankruptcies as its slowing economy forces companies with sky-high debts to the wall, the country’s premier has said.

  Premier Li Keqiang told lenders to China’s private sector factories they should expect debt defaults as the world’s second largest economy encounters “serious challenges” in the year ahead.

  Speaking after the annual session of the national people’s congress, Li Keqiang said: “We are going to confront serious challenges this year and some challenges may be even more complex.” He told lenders to China’s private sector factories they should expect debt defaults.

  Li said China must “ensure steady growth, ensure employment, avert inflation and defuse risks” while also fighting pollution, among other tasks.

” So we need to strike a proper balance amidst all these goals and objectives,” he added. “This is not going to be easy,” he said.

  Li’s warning followed the failure of Shanghai Chaori Solar Energy to make a payment on a 1bn yuan (£118m) bond last week. The default was the first of its kind for China and widely seen as pointing to the end of 11th-hour government bailouts for troubled enterprises.” “

 

The Guardian has the details

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

America’s Dwindling Economic Freedom

 

 

” World economic freedom has reached record levels, according to the 2014 Index of Economic Freedom, released Tuesday by the Heritage Foundation and The Wall Street Journal. But after seven straight years of decline, the U.S. has dropped out of the top 10 most economically free countries.

  For 20 years, the index has measured a nation’s commitment to free enterprise on a scale of 0 to 100 by evaluating 10 categories, including fiscal soundness, government size and property rights. These commitments have powerful effects: Countries achieving higher levels of economic freedom consistently and measurably outperform others in economic growth, long-term prosperity and social progress. Botswana, for example, has made gains through low tax rates and political stability.”

 

   Heck of a job Barack . Now the “Land Of Liberty” needs to take lessons in freedom from Mauritius ? More on this story at the WSJ  and you can view the rankings with methodology and percentages of change year over year at Heritage.org

 

 

Economic Freedom Index 2014

 

 

The “One” promised change and that’s what we’ve got . No one ever said the change would be good .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Libertarian Businessman Says Goodbye To California With The New Year

 

 

 

” Libertarian businessman and park privatization advocate Warren Meyer is celebrating the new year by getting the heck out of California, like so many other businesses. He posted the many reasons why it’s so hard to do business in the Golden State, particularly in Ventura County, on his blog. Here’s a sampling of some of the reasons:

  • It took years in Ventura County to make even the simplest modifications to the campground we ran.  For example, it took 7 separate permits from the County (each requiring a substantial payment) just to remove a wooden deck that the County inspector had condemned.  In order to allow us to temporarily park a small concession trailer in the parking lot, we had to (among other steps) take a soil sample of the dirt under the asphalt of the parking lot.   It took 3 years to permit a simple 500 gallon fuel tank with CARB and the County equivalent.   The entire campground desperately needed a major renovation but the smallest change would have triggered millions of dollars of new facility requirements from the County that we simply could not afford.”

 

Reason has more

 

Illustration by A F Branco

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Restaurant Registry Identifies Gun-Friendly Eateries

 

 

 

” In what could be described as a Michelin Restaurant Guide for concealed carry weapon owners, a new pro-gun group is setting up a registry of restaurants where firearms are welcome.

  2Amendment.org, going by the name 2AO, was created by restauranteur Bryan Crosswhite, according to The Washington Times.

“ We want to make it something for business owners who are pro-Second Amendment,” Crosswhite told The Times. “A sticker on the door, just like Zagat [Survey], and that way people who want to do business with pro-Second Amendment companies will automatically connect with those Second Amendment companies.”

  In addition to a notice on the door, patrons will be able to find gun-friendly restaurants on the website’s registry, by entering their location on a computer or smart phone. The registry is expected to be up and running sometime this month.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Published on Jul 16, 2013

” If founder Elon Musk is right, Tesla Motors just might reinvent the American auto industry—with specialized robots building slick electric cars in a factory straight from the future. That’s where the battery-powered Model S is born.

Subscribe to the all new Wired channel here: 
http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCftwR…
Visit the Wired channel for more video:http://www.youtube.com/wired ” 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Published on Sep 4, 2013

” Fracking has been a standard practice in natural gas mining for a long time, but documentary films have caused some laypeople to question its safety. How justified are these fears?http://infactvideo.com “

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Time To End The Corporate Welfare

 

 

” The terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, inflicted enormous losses on the insurance industry and businesses. In the wake of the disruptions occurring in the insurance market at the time, the government enacted the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act of 2002 to create a “temporary” federal backstop against catastrophic losses. This program subsidized private risk with public funds through a cost-sharing program for which the government does not receive any compensation.

The compelling need for the program was unclear even in the smoldering aftermath of 9/11. Yet in response to effective lobbying by the insurance industry and business interests, Congress has twice extended the program. The program is now scheduled to sunset at the end of 2014, 12 years after this supposedly temporary program was instituted.

If there was some ambiguity about the program’s need before, there is none now. Terrorism risk is not more severe than other insurable risks such as natural catastrophes, and a federal backstop stakes public money to protect the insurance industry, and subsidize the terrorism risk insurance premiums for commercial policyholders. The private market is capable of underwriting this risk. This policy analysis suggests that the program should sunset as scheduled in 2014, thus ending this form of corporate welfare.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MONEY NEWS

 

” Most people know Sean Hyman from his regular appearances on Fox Business, CNBC, and Bloomberg Television, but what they don’t know is that Sean is a former pastor, and that his secret to investing is woven within the Bible.

Perhaps that can explain why, despite his uncanny ability to predict precise moves in the stock market, Sean is often laughed at for his unique stance on investing.

For example . . . a few months ago Sean appeared on Bloomberg Television. At that time, Best Buy (BBY) was dropping to all-time lows of $16 a share. Sean predicted the stock could go down to $11 a share, and would then quickly rebound to $25 per share, and after that would rally to $40 per share over the next year.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

Have You Ever Wondered Whether The Money You Spend Ends Up Funding Causes You Oppose?

 

BUYCOTT

 

 

” A buycott is the opposite of a boycott. Buycott helps you to organize your everyday consumer spending so that it reflects your principles.

Example: During the SOPA/PIPA debate in 2012, a number of companies pushed to pass legislation that reduced online freedom of expression, while other companies fought hard to oppose the legislation. With Buycott, a campaign can be quickly created around a cause, with the goal of targeting companies with a boycott unless they change their position, or buycotting a company to show your support.

When you use Buycott to scan a product, it will look up the product, determine what brand it belongs to, and figure out what company owns that brand (and who owns that company, ad infinitum). It will then cross-check the product owners against the companies and brands included in the campaigns you’ve joined, in order to tell you if the scanned product conflicts with one of your campaign commitments.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What The Bond Market Sell-Off Looks Like On A 222-Year Chart

 

global financial data bond yields versus stocks

” The big story in markets over the past few weeks has been the sell-off in the Treasury bond market and the accompanying rise in bond yields to their highest levels in over a year.

Goldman strategists are out with a call declaring the sell-off “for real” this time after a number of false starts.” 

 

 

What Libertarians Mean By “The Free Market”

 

 

 

 

Published on May 20, 2013

” Markets are much more than multinational corporations, banking firms, and stock brokerages on Wall Street, though all of those things are the result of a market system.

Sound economies, from the biggest multinational banks to a child’s sidewalk lemonade stand, operate on the principles of private property and exchange. These concepts are the building blocks of free societies, and it is the system of countless small trades, taken as a whole, that we call “the market.”

It is important to note that these trades are positive sum (win-win) situations: each party agrees to a trade because they value what they’re getting more than what they’re giving up.

And when those trades are voluntary–when nothing is preventing people from making trades or forcing people to make trades–that results in a free market, which makes everyone healthier, wealthier, more peaceful, and more technologically advanced.

That’s what libertarians mean when they defend the free market.”

Produced by Evan Banks and Aaron Ross Powell.

 

 

 

 

 

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Enjoys 51% Rise In Profits

 

 

 

” Berkshire Hathaway, the investment firm led by Warren Buffett, has posted a 51pc rise in profits thanks to the performance of its insurance companies and the rising value of the businesses it owns stakes in.

Berkshire said net income rose to $4.89bn (£3.14bn) in the first quarter of its financial year on the back of revenues growing 15pc to $43.9bn.

The conglomerate controls almost 100 companies across insurance, utilities, clothing and consumer goods, but also holds stakes in some of the world’s biggest businesses, including Coca-Cola, Wells Fargo, and Tesco, which is Berkshire’s biggest holding outside the US.”

 

 

 

 

 

There Is No Magic Formula. But That Doesn’t Mean There’s No Formula At All.

 

 

 

 

” At the heart of any successful business is a great idea. Some seem so simple we wonder why nobody thought of them before. Others are so revolutionary we wonder how anybody could’ve thought of them at all.

But those great ideas don’t come on command. And that leaves lots of would-be entrepreneurs asking the same question: How did everybody else get inspiration to strike—and how can we work the same magic?

To find out, we turned to the experts—investors, advisers and professors who have seen and heard countless success stories, as well as entrepreneurs who have written success stories of their own. They saw inspiration coming from all sorts of sources—everyday puzzles, driving passions and the subconscious mind.

Here’s what they had to say.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LAX Emergency Evacuation Deemed False Alarm

 

 

” Visitors and passengers of Los Angeles International Airport were greeted with a shocking message Monday night when the airport’s flight-status boards accidentally flashed an emergency evacuation message.

Passengers were the first to notify police after the message appeared behind ticket counters at the Tom Bradley International Terminal. Passengers said the message read: “An emergency has been declared in the terminal. Please evacuate.”

The Los Angeles Times reported that airport personnel initially believed the message was the work of a hacker. Authorities investigated the affected computer systems but did not identify any suspects.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CALIFORNIA BILL COULD SHUT DOWN SMALL RESTAURANTS

 

 

 

 

” The State of California has one of the worst proposals of any legislature in the country this year with a new bill that would force every restaurant and food service business in the state to commission an expensive “risk assessment” test for every menu item.

Such a test could cost thousands of dollars for every food item sold. This outrageous and cost prohibitive testing would certainly cause all but the biggest chain restaurants to go out of business almost instantly.

In another exercise in nanny-statism, California’s State Senate Democrats want this “risk assessment” conducted to determine whether food being sold “contributes significantly to a significant public health epidemic.”

The bill, Senate Bill 747, is an addition to the current health and safety codes and is currently set for a hearing on April 17. It was written and introduced by Sen. Mark DeSauliner (D, Concord).

As California politics watchdog Stephen Frank points out, “Pass this and hundreds of thousands of Californians are out of work on Day One–and tens of thousands of Californians have lost their investments and businesses.”

But there are other, perhaps unintended, consequences in the offing here. This law would benefit large, multi-million dollar national chain restaurants in as much as it would eliminate their competition at a local level. Mom and Pop restaurants, small local chains, and one-location restaurants could never afford to have expensive tests done for every food item they sell. The big chains, however, have a whole country of locations and customers upon which to spread the costs of this “risk assessment.” “

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Obamacare Continues To Restrict Hiring

” The Beige Book is a report published eight times a year that details the economic activity in the 12 different Federal Reserve regions. As this most recent report explains, “Employers in several Districts cited the unknown effects of the Affordable Care Act as reasons for planned layoffs and reluctance to hire more staff.”

But why is this news now? Federal Reserve presidents have cited Obamacare as a hiring hindrance for a few years now. In 2010, the Federal Reserve Bank president of Atlanta said,“We have frequently heard strong comments to the effect of ‘My company won’t hire a single additional worker until we know what health insurance costs are going to be.’” There is little more clarity on what the new costs are going to be for business owners. This is why three different Federal Reserve regions have directly linked Obamacare to slower hiring.”

Tracking Sensors Invade the Workplace

 

 

” As Big Data becomes a fixture of office life, companies are turning to tracking devices to gather real-time information on how teams of employees work and interact. Sensors, worn on lanyards or placed on office furniture, record how often staffers get up from their desks, consult other teams and hold meetings.

Businesses say the data offer otherwise hard-to-glean insights about how workers do their jobs, and are using the information to make changes large and small, ranging from the timing of coffee breaks to how work groups are composed, to spur collaboration and productivity.

Surveys measure a point in time—what’s happening right now with my emotions. [Sensors] measure actual behavior in an objective way,” says Mr. Arena.

But there’s a fine line between Big Data and Big Brother, at least in the eyes of some employees, who might shudder at the idea of the boss tracking their every move. Sensor proponents, however, argue that smartphones and corporate ID badges already can transmit their owner’s location. In many cases, workers can opt out of participating in the sensor studies.”

 

 

 

 

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