Deficit mentality is holding our customers back!

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Boat sales appear to have gotten a boost from the winter boat shows. Good news, for sure. But, you gotta be in a coma not see why our unit sales still aren’t even close to what they should be. Is it no customers? No, they’re out there. Lack of credit? Only in some cases. Consumers hunkered down? Yes, in part. Political insanity? Bingo!

One word really says it all -- “deficits!” The exploding deficit is scaring the hell out of all of us. Let’s face it: the federal deficit is already so enormous we have trouble comprehending it. We’re lucky we can still get anyone to finance it. But, what may be most chilling to us is the lack of concern being shown by the administration and Congress. And when we’re scared about the future, we’ll hold off purchases of durable hard goods . . . we don’t buy boats when we’re not happy and confident.

We all do budgets in our business and/or personal life. We easily recognize when income isn’t covering expenses. We can also see when we’re falling into debt we can’t support. So, these days, as we watch our lawmakers in Washington, is it any wonder we can’t see how our government is going to pay for our exploding deficits -- except by increasing taxes. We aren’t sure how much of a tax increase would even be needed but our gut says it’s inevitable! 

Top that off with the ongoing push for still more massive bills in Congress from health care to cap and trade to the plans for more stimulus spending. But as consumers, we like certainties. We’re uncomfortable when things aren’t and it makes us hold off on major expenditures.

If all that isn’t enough, how about the unprecedented political rhetoric flying through the air? It appears the green house gases causing global warming are coming from Washington! Like, a senator is called merciless for demanding to know how to pay for an unemployment bill. The President vilifies the nation’s bankers. Cabinet members spew the party-line on Sunday talk shows. TV pundits cry socialism. One political party just says “no.” Another says we should urge Congress to pass a bill the majority of American’s reject and, then, count on a promise lawmakers will correct it after its law. Oh, sure, check’s in the mail! Not surprising, then, against all this background people don't feel it's a great time to buy our boats.

I admit I’m not writing this because I have come up with any great solutions – wish I did. Guess I’m just finally fed up with all the political drama that never seems to lead to any real solutions. I do feel better venting, though, and if you want to vent here, feel free. Or, if you have any solutions, chime in.

In the meanwhile, let’s go back to work and keep fighting our way forward.?


The impact of a burning river

When the Cuyahoga caught fire in 1969, it set off a chain of events that led to federal action for clean water. It was a huge win for the environment and those who use the water for recreation, but our work isn’t finished.