I treated myself to lunch today (chicken teriyaki...yummy!) and walking back to work I walked past three empty shops that have been for rent for over a year (one of them for almost two years). They are great little shops with a pretty good location. Yet they sit ... empty.
And I thought about how fun it would be to have my own gift shop. The front windows of the corner shop are huge - taking up the whole front - and I can envision the displays I would create and the handcrafted goodies that I would carry.
Yet why should I? I have no incentive from my government to put myself at risk. The reward (at the moment) is too low and the risk too great. If I succeed they will tax me to pieces at the state and federal level, not to mention the business rules and regulations that hinder progress. If I fail, I'm on my own. My state is hideously anti-small business, no matter what they say.
It's sad that in today's recessionary times that the government stands in the way of innovation and progress. I have no hope that the new administration will do anything to help businesses - small or large - to succeed. Like FDR during the depression they lambaste business as greedy and blame corporations for the ills of the economy.
I'm reading an incredible history book called The Forgotten Man. I HIGHLY recommend it to anyone who loves history or anyone who wants to understand a little more about our economy (and somewhat how we got in this mess...it does stem back that far). Because the "Great" Depression was nothing more than an economic experiment held on the backs of the people.
So as much as I would love love love to open my own shop (yes, even in these times) I won't. I'll continue to make my jewelry and slowly build up my stock and reputation online. Perhaps someday I will be able to help other artists showcase their work in a gift shop gallery setting, but not today.