Monday, March 16, 2009

When The Financial Meltdown Hits Home...

"The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall."
- Nelson Mandela

Photograph by Kilroy_60

Barack Obama has been President of the United States for about 50 days and there are people asking why he hasn't pulled our economy out of the ditch yet.

I can answer that question for you. It's because George W. Bush was one of the worst Presidents in the history of the country and the economy we have is a result of his blunders and those of his failed administration.

Barack Obama has a mess to clean up exceeded only by what Franklin D. Roosevelt faced in The Great Depression. It's not going to be easy and it's not going to be fast, so do what you can to become part of the solution and stop being part of the problem.

Republicans, take note. You supported the policies of George W. Bush and you did so enthusiastically. Doing everything you can now to block Barack Obama's efforts to fix what you screwed up isn't beneficial to the country.

But, to hell with all that.

I haven't been posting for about two weeks...not because I was at La Alegría and not because I was traveling to collect on an Obama/McCain election bet. No, I've been working with a client to save one of his companies.

I've worked with GoIrish! for years. We've opened companies together, I've helped him grow and expand operations and we fixed problems he had in various companies.

I don't typically meet with GoIrish! at his home so when he invited me there for dinner I knew we had a serious issue to deal with.

Widget Manufacturing had been a lucrative enterprise for GoIrish! for many years, but it started to decline toward the end of 2007 and things got worse through 2008. He's still making money, but Widget Manufacturing's spreadsheet isn't what it once was.

While banks say they're lending money since getting bailout funds GoIrish! has an A+ credit rating and he's not getting the funding he wants for Widget Manufacturing.

The primary issues GoIrish! wanted to discuss were consolidating operations, restructuring management, laying off hourly employees and, ultimately, the possibility of closing the company.

Normally, GoIrish! pours glasses of Johnnie Walker Blue Label to celebrate a victory of one kind or another. On this night, though, it was to ease the pain. The possibility of closing a business wasn't something he'd ever dealt with before and he wasnt taking it well.

GoIrish! won't be requesting any money from the government to save Widget Manufacturing. We've put a plan in place to stop the bleeding for now and are working on long-term solutions.

I'm waiving my fee for the time being in order to save two management jobs. Meanwhile all the managers have taken a pay cut and GoIrish! is not collecting a salary. So far, Widget Manufacturing has not had any lay offs and that's something I'm doing my best to avoid.

When the history of our financial recovery is written I intend to have Widget Manufacturing be one of the things that contributed to it's success.

That's all for now, I have to jet to a meeting with GoIrish!


Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper said...

A fine and most relevant story. As a former CEO of a small business, 50 employees, 7.5$Million Sales when it was sold in 1983, I have great empathy for GoIrish!, and I have great respect for what you are doing to help.

Before my retirement I managed 12 consultants/counselors dealing with individual clients who had lost their jobs in the bad days of the late 1980' and 1990's. I heard all the stories of how their employers got in trouble and why they lost their jobs, positions which paid from $20K to $500K. The stories were remarkably similar over that pay range.

The GOPhers are hoping the country has suddenly developed amnesia on January 20, 2009, about the past eight years. I support Obama's decision to remind the voters constantly about the size of the mess Bush left him.

Becky said...

Really, you think spending more money and creating inflation is going to be helpful? The economy would rebound on its own! Giving the federal government more power than belongs to them doesn't solve anything. It just enables people to think that the government can save them and they don't have to save themselves by being accountable. Do you remember Carter at all?

I have to disagree completely. Our country is the last that is not socialist and I like it that way! That is what makes the U.S. such a great place to live we can achieve and not have it stolen from the government in a radical division of wealth.

Kilroy_60 said...

What I think, Becky, is this. The argument you're putting forward is what John McCain and the GOP used last November and it went down in flames.

This elephant shit about redistributing wealth is what Joe The Non-licensed Plumber used to get 10 minutes of fame.

Sarah Palin too, now she doesn't want to show her face outside of Alaska; did you notice that at the recent National Governors Conference?

Do I remember Jimmy Carter? Do you remember the Waterhead Son of Texas?

I voted for President Obama in November and believe that he is the most capable person to recover what was once a prosperous economy.

Republicans whine and bitch about what he's doing, but are offering no solutions that are better. All the GOP does is recommend doing what Bush did and say that it's better. Those policies failed under Bush and aren't going to succeed now.

What you and the Republicans call Socialism is, unfortunately, what's necessary to fix what was ruined over the past 8 years.

I suggest you and everyone else who disagrees offer better solutions if you don't agree with what's happening.

What has been stolen is any reasonable chance for most people to achieve the American dream and that was done by George W. motherfucking Bush and the Republican Party.

President Obama is doing the best he can to make fulfillment of the American Dream a possibility again.

That, for Republicans, is the painful truth.

Beach Bum said...

After eight years of Bush doubling the national debt and not saying a freaking word only now do republicans start hysterically screaming about ruining our children's future with debt? Apparently the definition of hypocrisy is as unknown as the true meaning of Socialism which I have found most people wouldn't know if it jumped up and bite them on the ass.

My only concern is that President Obama just won't have enough time to clean up the mess. I fear one of Bush's self-made geopolitical time bombs blowing up on my president.

Great blog, will drop by again.

LakeLegend said...

I personally don't follow politics much, but relate much more to the individual stories about life in the econosoup of today. And that's what gave me a smile today; people who care about people doing what they can to bring about a positive change in the arena available to them! I applaud the efforts of GoIrish! management and hold them up as an example of people who have their priorities straight in this economic climate! Sacrificing their own gain to keep the boat afloat and get through the storm is a perfect example of what Obama seems to be preaching, and if that's not leadership on his part, I don't know what is. To me, that's what a good president is...a leader (one who points the way and goes there!) Using a metaphor from a previous Bush, GoIrish! seems to be a wonderful point of light. When you think about it, we can cast blame about who sank the ship and flounder in the darkness, or we can keep our eyes focused on the point of light that will lead us safely to shore! Kudos to GoIrish! and all connected!

Global Patriot said...

It is so sad that thousands of small businesses will go under, simply because they are too small to care about in the eyes of the financial wizards that have tanked the world economy.

Only by increasing your size to the point where the entire world is in jeopardy does one get truckloads of bailout money.

Anonymous said...

It's sad, this story is like so many I hear and the one I am living. I find it funny how everyone (dem and Rep) sit there and point fingers back and forth. The last I saw it takes more than one man to run this country. There are both parties in the Congress. I am the CEO of my company, but if my VP's and Directors screw everything up they would be fired. Yet Congress gets no penalty- Bush and Obama get all the ridicule. Stop letting the media and Congress control your one-sided thoughts and do real research on the issues. A relationship doesn't grow by rehashing.