Archive for January 2016
I decided to designate January, 2016 as my “rant about something in my blog month,” but I will also offer solutions. I decided to provide a series of three such blogs planned in January, this one being my third.
Please also do read first two:
• My Issues with Corporate Procurement and Supplier Diversity Professionals
• The US Patent Process – a Huge Roadblock to American Entrepreneurship and Small Business.
These first two were totally serious, and this one I will close with a little humor.
One Labor Day, I wrote a special tongue-in-cheek Labor Day Blog titled, “The Largest Threat to the American Economy and Entrepreneurism,” about how the tremendous explosion of spam mail is destroying American business efficiency. Now I want to address something that is equally as bad, the huge proliferation of annoying “robo-calls” on the phone, many of them illegal scams.
I recently got a robocall which stated, “Urgent, you are being sued by the IRS (US Internal Revenue Service) and this is your final warning. Please call this number and provide your social security number for more information.” (Read more about this scam in this online AARP article.)
This is enough to scare many Americans –a threatening call from the government saying they were being sued. Of course it was a scam, but thousands of people may not realize it and end up being bilked of thousands of dollars. At best, these constant calls from credit card companies, time share sellers and political fundraisers are annoying, destroying our quality of live and being a major hit on productivity.
Seriously, Donald Trump and other politicians should stop talking about deporting hardworking Hispanics who fill construction, farming, cleaning and landscaping jobs that contribute to our economy, and instead propose ways to go after these useless parasites disrupting our lives and lock them up in jail for 20 years. Think of how much boost to the economy we can achieve in building prisons and hiring personnel to staff the facilities to keep this scum locked up. And also the productivity boost of not having to answer the phone every 15 minutes.
We all need to call our representatives and senators in Congress and demand they take immediate action on this drain to American productivity and quality of life NOW!
In this blog I will complain about how the US Patent Process can easily kill and bankrupt a small business. Yes, there are many small business (like my consulting practice or opening a restaurant or boutique store) for which the patent process is irrelevant, but for start-up businesses around a totally new product or invention or process, the patent process can completely ruin them.
I do have some experience as a major investor in an innovative product in the pill case industry. I wrote about it a little in a blog back in September, 2012. By far the largest expense was going through the patent process. I am saddened that as an investor in an entrepreneurial pursuit, that a huge portion of my investment had to go to extremely highly paid patent attorneys making $750 per hour.Any process that requires large amounts of high paid attorneys is broken! Yes, major corporations with multi-million or even billion dollar research and development budgets can easily foot $100,000 to push a patent though the process, but this could quickly bankrupt a start-up company. The US Small Business Administration provides support and tools for budding entrepreneurs, but in this area they fall far short. And I have heard members of President Obama’s administration speak eloquently about how small businesses are the backbone of the American economy, yet the US Administration burdens us with this arduous costly process.
So as large companies get bigger and lawyers get rich, small businesses die.
What do I recommend? The Small Business Administration should establish a simpler fast-path cost-effective process that does not require attorneys to complete. And perhaps the SBA can even provide some legal support at no charge to assist start up companies and small entrepreneurs. If small business are indeed the backbone of the US economic recovery, then remove this tremendous road block that only large companies now afford.