This is a guest post by Jennifer Keenan, Defend Oregon Outreach Coordinator.
For too long, the voice of the business community has been dominated by large corporate interests, political consultants, and special interest lobbyists, who've all pushed a narrow agenda of tax cuts and deregulation for large corporations. And it's all been in the name of "job creation" and "protecting small businesses." (See, among others, ALEC.)
Thankfully, that's starting to change, as actual small business owners and leaders have begun to organize in order to tell the real story of small business in America. In Oregon, that movement is being led by groups like the Main Street Alliance, Equity Alliance Oregon, and VOIS Alliance.
To mark National Small Business Week (did you know there was a National Small Business Week?), 20 business leaders came together on Tuesday at Talking Drum Bookstore and Coffee House in Northeast Portland to talk about how to turn around our economy. Rather than the tired talking points you hear on Fox News, these leaders talked about the need for electoral reform, green jobs and sustainability, healthcare reform, and a fairer tax system that supports schools and business infrastructure. The event was spearheaded by Mainstreet Alliance Oregon, with help from VOIS and Equity Alliance, among others. They were joined by Congressman Earl Blumenauer and representatives from Gov. Kitzhaber's office.