Government: Paper Tiger

The U.S. Government requires the business community to file no fewer than 5,455 different reports during the year on a variety of subjects, ranging from employment to industrial inventories. Small businessmen complain that they sometimes have to pay the accountants who handle their forms more than they make themselves, and some big businessmen spend as much as $300,000 a year just answering Defense Department questionnaires. In a single year, one Midwestern farm-products company handled 173 different federal forms, ranging in frequency of filing from daily to annually, and finally turned in a total of 37,683 reports that involved 48,285...

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