Friday, September 18, 2009

Tyranny in Massachusetts

So the Democrats in the Massachusetts House of Representatives have decided that having the Governor appoint an interim U.S. Senator to replace the late Ted Kennedy is a good idea after all. No doubt their colleagues in the state Senate will follow suit, thus bringing Massachusetts full circle: from the state that first rebelled against tyranny to the state where tyranny rules.

In case you missed it, the Democrat-dominated legislature was quick to yank the long-standing privilege of appointing interim U.S. Senator away from then-Governor Mitt Romney (a Republican) when it appeared that John Kerry might win the Democratic nomination for President in 2008. They cried "foul" when faced with the prospect of Romney appointing a fellow Republican if the seat became vacant. Better to wait for a special election, the Dems said.

But now, with a Democrat back in the Governor's office, things suddenly look different. Why wait for a special election when you are virtually guaranteed that a Democrat will replace Kennedy? This is what happens when one party is so dominant that they feel no need to actually represent the people who elect them.

How bad is it? The House of Representatives actually considered passing a law that would require Governor Deval Patrick to appoint a Democrat with his newly restored power. It was narrowly defeated.

What arrogance! But what can you expect from a group that is so secure in its position and so self-centered that it simply ignored an overwhelming statewide referendum calling for a rollback of a "temporary" tax hike enacted several years ago.

The Democrats in Massachusetts (and, indeed, across the country) feel that they know what is good for us better than we know ourselves. And they are willing to ram it down our throats. Tyranny, thy name is Massachusetts.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Recession's over? Now what?

In case you have not heard, the recession is over and economic activity is on the rebound. What? Your business is not booming again? Customers are still hard to come by?

Join the club. While Wall Street may be on an upswing, it will be several months before any semblance of "normal" returns to Main Street.

But that does not mean you should sit back and wait. Just the opposite, in fact. Now is the time to launch a preemptive marketing strike aimed at recapturing lost customers and conquering new ones.

The mood of the country is definitely shifting, and tightened purse strings will surely loosen somewhat. But painful memories of the recession will linger and cause consumers (including business-to-business customers) to be more prudent and cautious. All the more reason to be aggressive with your marketing.

Putting your name, products and services in front of potential customers now will better position your company for the time when customers do start spending again. In fact, acting now will leave you a less crowded field, as timid competitors try to tiptoe through the next few months without making any impact on the market.

Be bold and loud and consistent today and you'll be the one buyers choose when they start writing checks again.