I have been self-employed for most of my working life and even though I did not start the United States Federation of Small Businesses, I naturally found it stimulating and rewarding to work with and for small businesses.

Let’s make no mistake about the fact that we all recognize that these are difficult times for small businesses in this country and USFSB, as a small business, is ever mindful of the struggles of its small business members.   USFSB is also not immune to the same economic downturn that is adversely affecting the small business community.

Despite our troubles, we, as small business owners, should find the Occupy movement to be contrary to everything we believe in and strive for.  Even if this movement appears to be less vocal lately, they have not gone away and their banner has been adopted by some politicians who hope to ride their agenda into office.  Sure, we can agree in general terms with the call to clean up our financial institutions and we can support and even applaud such suggestions as to shop locally and spend our money at small businesses in our communities.  Unfortunately, at its heart, the Occupy movement is not about those lofty ideas nor is it even a plaintive cry for help.

The Occupy movement, when stripped of its social equality veneer, represents nothing more than a class war from an increasingly out of control fringe group of underachievers who are mainly fueled by resentment and a sense of entitlement to feed off of other people’s success.  Their movement seems, at times, to be more like an extended riot than a meaningful and productive protest as they try to bring down anyone with wealth and, at the same time, arrogantly demand other people’s money.

Think about the Occupy movement’s motives and tactics.   Part of their agenda is to disrupt the economy so that they can impinge the profits of the very capitalists they want to tax.   This is indicative of the irrational goals of a movement that wants to eviscerate the free enterprise system in order to improve the plight of workers; however, if they succeed just where will these liberated workers find jobs?   History has taught us that every country and ideology that killed free enterprise in the name of worker’s rights has failed.   As a small business owner and part of that free enterprise system, do you really think that you will be better off if the Occupy movement is successful?

Whether or not you are rich and even if there is no chance that your taxes will be affected, if you are a small business owner you should view the Occupy movement with its calls to redistribute to themselves the wealth that has been generated by the efforts of others as a perversion of the American Dream that you are pursuing.   This is more than just about raising someone’s taxes.   This is about whether or not we are going to continue to be a free, open and competitive society that values the inspiration, enthusiasm, and desire that drives people to strive for success.

Our country was built on the belief that the perseverance and entrepreneurial spirit of small business owners with their desire to be independent and self-reliant as they pursued success and created a better life for themselves and their families from their own efforts and ingenuity was the embodiment of the American Dream.   It is this willingness to stake your future on your own efforts and abilities in a free and competitive society that made this country great and helped us lead the world in innovations and progress.  We became the wealthiest and most powerful country in the world because we valued and encouraged the risk takers in pursuit of success.

As a small business owner, you are the heart and soul of that American Dream.*   Even though every large and wealthy business started out as someone’s small business, being a small business owner is not just about the accumulation of wealth.   The real motivation to start a small business is the value you place on the opportunity to be able to go as far as your talents will take you and to be in control of your own destiny.   Even if you fall short, there is the pride and satisfaction in making the effort.

As small business owners, it is time to turn away from the Occupy movement and its efforts to remake America into its own lackluster and nihilistic image.  It is time to once again embrace the ideals that made this country great in order to prevent the American Dream from being taken hostage by those who want to destroy it while they prosper from the success of others.

The Robin Hood image of stealing from the rich and giving it to, in this case, the not so poor Occupy movement may be a romantic notion in the movies but in real life it is abhorrent. Whether at gun point or through the power of the ballot, to demand someone else’s money is still highway robbery.

* It was reported, on January 6, 2012, that small businesses took the lead in job creation in December adding approximately 155,000 new jobs.

In “Take Back The American Dream, Part 2″ to be posted on Wednesday there is a call to action and Joe’s list of suggested Demands in anticipation of the Demands to come from the Occupy movement.

If you are concerned about the Occupy agenda, pass this on to other concerned citizens.