Introducing a New Member of the Least Wanted Cast
According to reports out today, Big Business is continuing to build up cash and strong earnings are expected to be announced later this week. Great news...unless you're a small business. One of the thousands that can't get loans or hire more people because they don't have the money the loans would give them.
The problem seems to be — surprise! — the Banks. They just won't give any money out to the little guys. Ironic, considering that they were the little guys when they came before Congress last year groveling for mass cash infusions to keep them afloat. Money that, when all was said and done, came from us, the actual little guys.
According to an AP story, Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke was speaking at a Federal Reserve conference that was being held to look into ways to increase lending to small companies. Not that the Fed has the authority to make the banks do squat. Or do they? Back when the economic crisis hit hardest, in 2008, they did set up such a lending program to provide low-cost loans...to banks.
"Making credit accessible to sound small businesses is crucial to our economic recovery," Bernanke said. "More must be done."
Gee, Ben, like maybe when you gave all that money to banks you might have thought to make it a condition of the handout that they return the favor?
All of which is a preamble leading up to our big introduction. When Jonathan Littman and I wrote I Hate People! last year, we included The Ten Least Wanted. This is the group of archetypes one tends to find in every place from business, from the Bulldozer boss to the Switchblade co-worker to the Sheeple subordinates. We knew then that we couldn't hope to corral all of the Least Wanteds in the world into just 10 categories. And so it is that Ben Bernanke is a fitting intro to our newest cast member...
STEREOTYPE: Larry Tate from Bewitched, Colonel Klink from Hogan's Heroes, or Homer Simpson from, of course, The Simpsons: "D'oh!"
PSYCH SHOT: Unable to render the simplest decision, most likely due to being constantly browbeaten and/or second guessed by parents and peers even at a very young age. Low to no self-esteem, often covered by bluster.
Ineffectuals exist at every level of society, in every tier of business, government, and religion. One would think they'd be doomed to failure for their inability to successfully complete any but the most mundane of tasks. (And, often times, even those elude them.) It's for this very feature that they often bumble their way upwards instead of down.
For it's Ineffectuals that step in where angels fear to tread, more so than fools. Because of their very ineffectiveness, these poor souls don't even realize why it is that they are powerless to accomplish much of anything. There are always, "many forces which we're still coming to grips with," or "studies into the matter have been inconclusive." If the Ineffectual had any real ability to suss out a problem, the trail would lead right back to themselves.
Certainly there's more to be said for — or is that against? — the Ineffectual, but that will stand as an introduction. As we explore the Ineffectual more we'll also reveal some solutions for dealing with this ceaseless challenge to productivity and advancement.
It's should be clear to most that there actually are many confusing elements behind the current economic mess that continues to march on. Nonetheless, there's no denying that certain members of the government, the banking industry, and the Federal Reserve stand to be stamped with the label of Ineffectual.
— Marc Hershon
Feel free to post your comments about how you've dealt with Ineffectuals on the job or in daily life. The frustrations. The solutions. Whatever you feel the need to get off your chest about these stumbling blocks to humanity's evolution.