reader Derek Lester recently had a few things to say about our coverage of the Bush Administration and its recent SBA budget cuts. Specifically, Mr. Lester took issue with a few stories we've recently run regarding this topic: Rhonda Abrams' column, "All Hat, No Cattle"; a story by Bobbie Gossage and Elizabeth Wasserman in the March issue of Inc, "SBA Slams Door on Borrowers"; and a recent Fresh Inc. post "SBA Leader Defends Slimmer Agency."

Here, Mr. Lester shares his viewpoint:

Your comments regarding George Bush & SBA's position concerning an apparent lack of support for small business is fatally flawed, and irresponsible journalism (or is it editorialism?). Focusing solely on loan guarantees and the SBA budget as your basis for your articles' assertions is flawed because you ignore the other, more significant money being credited back to small-business owners. Take for instance the $9.7 billion coming back to small-business owners in tax reductions, or increasing the expensing four times to $100K.
You also are critical about the SBA cutting off 7(a) loan guarantees when in fact the SBA doesn't have the funds available since Congress has not appropriated necessary funds due to budget bill disputes. This is an outstanding example of government being run like a good business; you don't spend what you don't have.
Take a look at this SBA link to get the real facts about what this administration is truly doing to support small businesses and then tell the whole story. Upon initial review, it would seem you have an agenda you're actioning with reporting this partially skewed version of ironic quotes from Sen. Kerry are cited in your [SBA Slams Door on Borrowers]. So please, list exactly what he is doing to help small businesses as he spends a year on the road campaigning. What is his business experience compared to that of the SBA director or even with the President? Has he put his budget plan forward for review?

What are your thoughts about the Bush Administration and its support, or lack of support, for small businesses? Let us know.