Small businesses do support closing corporate loopholes

The Hill’s Feb. 5 article, titled “Business groups oppose tax hikes to cover scheduled spending cuts,” suggests all businesses are unsupportive of the president’s suggestion Tuesday to close corporate tax loopholes as a way to delay the sequester, the mandatory cuts to a host of federal programs set to take effect on March 1. As far as small businesses are concerned — the businesses that make up 99.7 percent of all businesses in this country, and that employ nearly half of the private sector workforce — that’s flat wrong.

Small businesses have been telling lawmakers for more than a year to close tax loopholes giving big corporations an unfair advantage. This would help reduce the deficit and stave off deep spending cuts. And it’s not just a few small businesses here and there that feel this way. According to opinion polling Small Business Majority released last year, a whopping 92 percent of small businesses agree big corporations’ use of tax loopholes is a problem, and three-quarters say their business is harmed when corporations use loopholes to avoid taxes.

Small employers are America’s chief job creators. Encouraging an environment where small businesses can compete on a level playing field with big corporations is good for everyone. It will make the economy more stable and raise revenues needed to restore economic vitality.

But closing tax loopholes as a way to trim the deficit is just one small piece of a bigger issue. We need a long-term solution to our debt problem.

While a short-term fix is preferable to across-the-board spending cuts set to kick in at the beginning of next month, which could wreak havoc on the economy, entrepreneurs want our leaders to hammer out a long-term fix to deficit-related issues that keep coming up, no matter how difficult it might be. National opinion polling we released last month found the majority of small-business owners want a long-term solution to debt-ceiling issue and believe we cannot continue allowing politicians to hold the economy hostage to their particular spending priorities.

Short-term solutions only lead to more uncertainty for small businesses. They want lawmakers to put the debt issue to rest so they can focus on governing and encouraging job creation. Moreover, our polling found that while small-business owners believe reducing the deficit is needed, the majority agree the most important job for Congress and the president in 2013 is to create jobs.

Congress and the president should seize this moment to come together and work on a long-term solution to our deficit that balances spending cuts with revenue increases and moves our economy forward. As the sequester looms, small employers are looking to lawmakers for a long-term plan that protects our economy, creates the certainty businesses need to plan for the future and levels the economic playing field so they can compete in this tough environment.

Washington, D.C.

Violence Against Women Act ignores reality

Beyond fraud, waste, duplication, non-accountability, false accusations and the denial of civil rights, the blatantly obvious problem with the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) is that women constitute only about half of the true victims of domestic violence. The other half is made up of men, and they receive absolutely zero protections and services from Sen. Patrick LeahyPatrick Joseph LeahyNSA spying program overcomes key Senate hurdle McConnell to Dems: Don't hold government 'hostage' over DACA Nielsen acknowledges Trump used 'tough language' in immigration meeting MORE’s (D-Vt.) VAWA reauthorization (“Senate passes VAWA reauthorization,” Feb. 12).

Never mind that “progressives” proclaim to all who will listen that they are covering all victims — they are not. What is needed is new domestic violence legislation that is science-based and victim-centered, rather than based on false gender ideology.

Decades of consistently replicated social science research shows that domestic violence is initiated about equally by men and women; that slightly more women than men are physically harmed, but that men nonetheless represent more than 40 percent of the physically harmed victims; that the domestic violence initiation rates for women, and especially young women, have been rising; and that the domestic violence rates for bisexuals, gays and lesbians all are higher than for heterosexual couples.

Boys, men and fathers only can hope that Republicans in the House have both more common sense and more respect for science than do their Senate colleagues. Otherwise, why would any man in his right mind vote Republican? Since the Democrats are the “mommy party,” perhaps 2014 will be the year of the first successful party to become known as the “daddy party” — Republican or otherwise.

Speaking for myself, this male has been taken for granted and had his needs ignored by the Republican Party for far too long. After a half century, perhaps it is time to move on.

From Gordon E. Finley, professor of Psychology Emeritus, Florida International University, Miami