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Mobile business decision reeks of "good ole boy" regime in McDuffie

Dear Editor,

Regarding the action the County Commissioners have taken (preventing small business enterprise from growing in McDuffie County), I was astonished to find the out-dated "good ole boy" regime to be alive and well. I thought that people in my home county had the right to participate in free enterprise and had a chance to make a living (by starting a business from the ground up). And, when they (not the government) saw a need to enlarge their business, the small entrepreneurs could do just that.

Instead, I see that the small businessman is feared by the larger businessman who then calls on the "good ole boy" regime to help rid him (the established business owner) of his competition by making new rules and regulations that pander to his self-interest, and that stifle his competition.

Is that the American way? Have our county and city governments become so low as to try to squash the small upstart businesses by passing a garrote of regulations (the sole reason for which is to strangle the small upstart out of existence)? Are the established businesses frightened of the need to compete? If so, one must wonder, why? Is there the cold hard fear that the upstart may have a better product? There certainly seems to be the thought that the least risky way to compete is to have the upstart regulated out of existence. Instead, could the established business not (itself) provide the better product and/or upgrade it's facility in order to retain old business and to attract new business? Competition is neither novel nor unhealthy.

Assuming for a moment, though, that competition is unhealthy, why was everyone (some few years back) so hell bent on attracting a large well known discount store, an enterprise that hurt (if not completely eliminated) more than a few local established businesses. Furthermore, its corporate policies fly in the face of the dignity of its workforce and the values of the community. Hours of the workers are restricted in order to keep them ineligible for many (health care and other) benefits and a minimal wage is paid with which one cannot sustain a family. Meanwhile, the corporation subscribes to membership (as is its right) in, and support (with large sums of money) of organizations that promote values not in keeping with the majority of citizens of this community. Could that sum not go to bettering the lifestyle of its employee group? This is the type business was welcomed by our leaders!

Is it all about the tax base, that (in the mind of the commission) justifies this? Or is it simply that the bigger fish is always going to eat the smaller fish?

Randy and Phyllis Martin

Web posted on Thursday, January 18, 2007

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