There has been quite a bit of discussion in the media in recent months about “green shoots” demonstrating economic recovery. The merits of using $680 million in Wisconsin-as part of much more spending across the country-as a tourniquet to stem the bleeding of jobs are definitely up for debate. To this point, the only arguable evidence of any improvement jobs-wise as a result of the 2009 stimulus has been in the public sector (see, for example, this article indicating that the vast majority of jobs affected by Wisconsin’s chunk of the stimulus money are government-related).
In order to see any real, sustainable improvement, it will fall to American entrepeneurs to step up and jump start the economy by creating jobs that will be funded by what that business brings in-not our tax dollars. As this article by the president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce points out, we’ve lost over seven million jobs. Spending government money to preserve or ‘create’ jobs cannot pan out as a long-term solution.
The ability of American entrepreneurs to respond to these conditions and create employment opportunities will depend heavily on the climate for business as affected by government regulations and policies. Nobody knows this better than Guy Rehorst of Great Lakes Distillery (known for Rehorst vodka), who has dealt with government red tape and knows what it takes to run a successful business. We have a unique opportunity to hear his perspective on Wisconsin’s business climate at tomorrow night’s event at Great Lakes Distillery from 5:30-8.