It’s undeniable small business is the backbone of this great nation. And it ought to remain that way. After all, there are 31.7 million small businesses currently operating and employing nearly half of the U.S. workforce.
In wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, however, small businesses became an imperiled, threatened species after the government ordered their closure. Extended lockdown orders exacerbated problems for business owners and their employees, who, despite employing careful measures to open and operate safely, couldn’t return to work.
Soon after, our government began picking winners and losers, deeming who is and isn’t “essential” — leaving countless Americans in the dust and communities barren and deserted. A travesty, if you will.
Enter the new book by “recovering” investment banker and New York Times bestselling author Carol Roth: The War on Small Business: How the Government Used the Pandemic to Crush the Backbone of America.
Roth’s book is a sober examination into the root causes of the War on Small Business. This war was formally declared in March of 2020—but the animus towards small business didn’t start there, she writes. Free enterprise is in danger of going extinct. Now, this threat became abundantly clear in the last year.
“The War on Small Business was formally declared in March of 2020. But informally, it’s been going on for decades and anywhere in the world throughout history where you’ve had central power,” she said.
Roth masterfully exposes the nexus between government, big business, and cronyism—entities that substantially grew at the expense of mom and pop shops and burgeoning enterprises.
As a result, Main Street was the greatest casualty. With no reprieve or help in sight, many businesses were forced to shutter. About 500,000 to one million businesses have closed altogether since then. But what about the big box stores? They got handsomely rewarded with business given their “essential” designations and had record years of profit. It pays to have crony friends in government, right? Unless you’re an entrepreneur trying to make an honest living.
Small business isn’t the only form of decentralization under attack.
Government, Roth noted, is masterfully exploiting the pandemic to destroy competition from cryptocurrency and the burgeoning gig economy through the Protecting the Right to Organize Act (PRO Act). Why? Digital currency and flexible work are hot commodities giving users and participants more options and freedom, respectively.
I must warn you: Roth’s The War on Small Business is not for the faint of heart. But it is an indelible read. At minimum, it’ll shine a light on the foes of American free enterprise and inspire readers to challenge powerful interests.
You can order a copy of Carol Roth’s new book here.
Gabriella Hoffman is a media strategist, consultant, and award-winning outdoor writer based in the Washington, D.C. Metro Area.