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Here’s What Jill Stein Has to Say About Small Business

Meredith Wood

Meredith Wood

Editor-in-Chief at Fundera
Meredith is Editor-in-Chief at Fundera. Specializing in financial advice for small business owners, Meredith is a current and past contributor to Yahoo!, Amex OPEN Forum, Fox Business, SCORE, AllBusiness and more.
Meredith Wood

Perhaps no candidate has a bolder vision for America than Jill Stein. National polling research shows the Green Party candidate could get between 1% and 5% of the vote. That would be an increase from 2012, but obviously isn’t enough to win.

Still, the influence of the Green Party is being felt. Some on the left are running from Hillary Clinton for the Green Party hopeful. If you’re a small business owner, it’s time to listen to what she has to say. Because some of her ideas could very well go mainstream.

We’ve already discussed what Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, and Gary Johnson have to say about small businesses. Now, let’s look at what Jill Stein wants to do.

“The power to create this new world is not in our hopes, it’s not in our dreams—it’s in our hands.”

As the 2016 Green Party presidential candidate, Stein is calling for deep system change. Get rid of the corporate political parties run by greed and power, she says, and move to a human-centered economy that values peace, people, and planet above profit.

To put it simply: Republicans and Democrats are ruining America. And they need to be taken down.

What’s all this mean for small businesses?

Well, if the Green Party actually won, it would mean everything. Stein takes aim at corporations and the two big parties. She wants a system that favors the ordinary Americans—not elite interests.

Just one look at how much big corporations donate to both Republicans and Democrats is a compelling reason to come to her conclusion: democracy has been compromised, and the average American is getting the short end of the stick.

In Jill Stein’s world, the day of favors to big companies would end. American politics would no longer bend to their will. And small, locally-owned businesses would be given the investment and support they need and deserve to thrive.

Such a revolution would mean the world for small business owners. You would finally have a fair playing field to compete with big names, especially locally. It could be a golden age of innovation.

However, this kind of change wouldn’t be easy. Big money—along with big politics—would probably stop it. There’s also the question of where the cash to support small businesses would come from, since many think Stein’s policies would send corporations running for warmer environments abroad. Such policies could greatly lower the government’s tax revenues, and leave the country with little money to stimulate small business growth.

“Create living-wage jobs for every American who needs work.”

If Jill Stein entered the White House, she would enact policies to end unemployment.

Does that seem possible? Here’s how she’d do it:

  • Improve workers’ rights to unionize and share in the profits
  • Give every American the right to force the government to provide work
  • Pass the Green Deal, which would create 20 million jobs in renewable energy
  • Repeal “corporate” free trade agreements like NAFTA that export local jobs
  • Give low-interest loans and grants to green companies, specifically small, locally-owned businesses that will keep the money circulating within the community

Jill Stein focuses on local economies. She wants communities to be self-sufficient. When someone in a small town goes shopping for groceries, it should be to a store owned by a neighbor—not WalMart, Kroger, or another mammoth retailer.

On paper, her ideas could mean great things for small business owners. Economic policies would require small business involvement. On top of that, everyone would enjoy a $15 per hour minimum wage. And by making the wealthy and corporations pay their fair share in taxes, money would be spread more evenly, which means more consumers to support businesses of all sorts.  

This could be wonderful for you, regardless of whether you run an organic fruit store in the countryside or a marketing company in the city.

Yet many economists agree that no unemployment is not desirable. If every American has the right to work, and government is forced to provide work, it could lead to some unproductive segments of the economy (a job for the sake of a job can be wasteful). Plus, Stein wants to fund these jobs programs by cutting down our military spending, raising taxes across the board (especially for big corporations), taxing environmentally unfriendly businesses, and more. These policies wouldn’t just be difficult to enact—many think they’re outright dangerous, if not impossible

Of course, Stein would certainly face opposition on her Green Deal, especially since she also wants to get rid of all fossil fuels by 2030. Repealing trade agreements wouldn’t be easy, either. The main question would be 

“Invest in clean air, water, food  and soil for everyone. Clean up America.”

If your small business is in the green energy sector, you should be jumping for joy. Jill Stein is the Green Party candidate, and she’s got your back.

As mentioned before, her Green Deal would require a massive mobilization that would create 20 million jobs. The goal is to make the U.S. 100% clean energy by 2030. That means projects to create sustainable agriculture, public transit, a nationwide smart energy grid, and other infrastructure run by green energy. It also means efforts to protect the nation’s water supplies, forests, parks, and other natural resources.

Jill Stein not only wants to stop the use of fossil fuels and destructive energy extraction, she also wants to stop the use of pesticides and GMOs. She hopes to pass the Precautionary Principle, which states that America will not engage in an activity until it is proven it won’t damage the environment or human health.

Clearly, those working in the renewable energy sector would have incredible opportunities if the Green Party wins, as would any small company that has a supporting role in the Green Deal. For example, engineering firms, construction companies, raw materials suppliers, farmers, and transportation providers all would benefit.

But like any government policy, the dream rarely lives up to the reality. Where would Stein’s government get the money to fund the Green Deal?

She’s already getting rid of oil, natural gas, coal, and other fossil fuels. Companies in this sector are a significant source of tax revenue for some state governmentsOn top of that, the U.S. government is already nearly $20 trillion in the hole. For many politicians, there’s simply no way they can envision funding a major project. You can probably already picture a government shutdown over the Green Deal.

Jill Stein does have plans in place to increase government revenue, though. For instance, she wants to drastically cut military spending by 50%, increase taxes on the wealthy, and reduce private health insurance waste. This could provide the funding for the Green Deal. (But may cause some other, large issues, especially concerning national security and over-regulation of the private sector.)

Let’s not forget that her ideas already influence today’s politics. Many people, including President Obama, believe that massive development of green energy infrastructure could stimulate the economy. So, while you may not see her policy come to life this year, the wheels are in motion. Renewable energy has arrived and will only grow in use. It probably just won’t come at the pace Stein wants.

For Jill Stein, it’s all about freedom and equality

Above all, Jill Stein wants the rights of everyone ensured, especially those that face additional barriers to success in society. She’ll fight for the rights of women, minorities, indigenous groups, immigrants, and LGBTQIA people.

Here are some of the ways she plans to stand up for equality:

  • Defend the rights that indigenous groups have to their land
  • Make sure women are given equal pay in the workplace
  • Protect LGBTQIA individuals from discrimination in society
  • Give immigrants, including undocumented immigrants, a welcoming path to citizenship
  • Stop police brutality, get rid of mass incarceration, and end institutional racism within the justice system

Making sure that certain groups’ rights are upheld can open up a lot more opportunities for those groups as well as the greater economy. That’s because so many more people would have a fair chance to pursue their entrepreneurial dreams.

For example, giving women equal pay could do everything from reducing poverty to giving many families a better livelihood. Many women would also be in a better financial position to invest, save, and start businesses. This would give the economy a great boost.

Also, offering undocumented immigrants citizenship could spur small business development—because immigrants, on average, are twice as likely to start a company. If undocumented immigrants were granted citizenship, they would certainly feel more free to start a company.

Finally, Jill Stein wants to end the War on Drugs and release all non-violent drug offenders. To her, this is not only a human rights issue, but also an issue that is preventing Americans from realizing their potential. Releasing these individuals and providing support after release could benefit the economy because there would be an injection of labor and talent.

However, a common question economists ask of Jill Stein is: how? Making these radical changes all at once will take a great deal of money and raise many complicated, difficult issues. Where will she get funding? How will she push these changes through Congress? What unforeseen effects will these policies have?

It’s your vote

When it comes time to cast your vote, you’re in control. Just know what each candidate wants, and understand how that will impact your small business.

If you think a revolution is needed in this country, you’ll probably want to go with Gary Johnson or Jill Stein. Those are the two candidates who really want to change the game. But if your political beliefs are more in life with classic Democratic or Republican values, then Clinton or Trump are your best bets.

Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.
Meredith Wood

Meredith Wood

Editor-in-Chief at Fundera
Meredith is Editor-in-Chief at Fundera. Specializing in financial advice for small business owners, Meredith is a current and past contributor to Yahoo!, Amex OPEN Forum, Fox Business, SCORE, AllBusiness and more.
Meredith Wood

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