The overregulated American dream



Small businesses make up the backbone of the American economy, and in no place is this more apparent than Ohio. There are nearly one million small businesses in our state. More than two million of us — one-fifth of Ohio’s population — are employed by small businesses. We have some of the highest numbers of self-employed workers, including women and veterans, in the country. The ability of small and independent businesses to start here and grow is crucial to the economic health of our state, our communities and workers themselves. But there’s a regulatory barrier we need to address.  

Government regulations have a direct impact on the ability of independent businesses to keep the lights on, make payroll and create new Ohio jobs. The regulatory process in Washington should be designed to serve the public and keep people safe in a thriving economy. Instead, it is characterized by moving goalposts, complicated paperwork and overwhelming compliance costs — the sort that can make a small business go under and intimidate others away from business ownership altogether. Large corporations can survive in this environment. They have the resources — and lawyers — needed to absorb losses in time and money. Not every small business can.

Personally, I’ve been a Logan County entrepreneur since I was 17. I now own four local businesses and employ almost 40 people, including various subcontractors. In my own experience, navigating and complying with regulations is the single biggest challenge I face as a small business owner. I know I’m not alone in this and I know it can’t be what our lawmakers intended.

  • Written by Jason Duff

A MOTHER’S MISSION: Never, ever, ever forget who they are

I was going through my facebook messages and saw a picture of my oldest daughter. I looked at her beautiful face but kept going back and focusing on her eyes. The gateway to her soul. And I saw life. I saw peace. I saw beauty. I saw freedom. I saw my daughter’s soul again.The one I KNEW lived inside her. I saw the beauty of recovery. My daughter is a recovering addict. As I looked in those eyes, I had flashbacks of when what I saw in them frightened me beyond any fear I have ever felt in my life. I had witnessed seeing the evil hell of addiction stealing her soul and felt at times I was truly looking into the eyes of Satan himself. There were times I had to turn away as I felt that if I looked too long, the darkness would suck me in. And I still shudder everytime I have these flashbacks. Which thank God, are not much any longer. I believe though, that sometimes we have to go back so we remember and celebrate the victory over this horrible disease. The beauty of recovery. And the freedom of a precious soul.

  • Written by Robin Barton

What does our flag mean ... to you?

Unfortunately not what it should, based on the lack of respect that it is shown on almost a daily basis. Look around you and count the number of ways it is incorrectly displayed. It is especially evident on national holidays, with the lack of respect shown to our national standard when it passes by in a parade. People don’t stand and uncover their heads, they remain seated paying scant attention to what is going on around them.

  • Written by Russell S. Strayer, Bellefontaine

Consideer boat, water safety

As the summer months are coming a lot of people will be looking forward to enjoying water sports. Almost all people can swim. So because of that most people do not wear life jackets. Yes, it is a personal choice to do so or not. Most people put them on children. That is great but what about yourself?

  • Written by Mary Staley-Royer, Bellefontaine

Vets to D.C. trip appreciated

I was honored to go to Washington, D.C., last weekend with Logan County area vets to D.C., those who fought our country’s wars and defended our freedom over several generations, especially the World War II vets. They fought the war, they won the war, then came home and built this country and gave us all a good life in America.

  • Written by Ken Green, Marine Veteran, Kenton