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Paul McCartney and Wings had a song titled, “Silly Love Songs” and it starts with the line, “You’d think that people would have had enough of silly love songs.”

Every day we are surrounded by silly policies and rules. Some of them even have some benefit.

One that doesn’t, in my opinion, is here my city of Kirkland. Every new house or major remodel must put in a sidewalk, which costs thousands of dollars. We’re a suburban city, there are a lot of neighborhoods without sidewalks and some with full sidewalks, at least on one side of the street.

For example, my street has a full sidewalk on our side and almost none on the other side (which is fine). When a new house was built on the corner, across the street from us, they had to put in a full sidewalk on both street sides. Even though there are full sidewalks across both streets and these new sidewalks have no connecting sidewalks. They just sit there, ending at gravel. To me, a useless and expensive rule.

The flip side

The SBA has a rule that states that when there’s an SBA guaranteed acquisition loan the seller must be completely out within one year. On the surface it seems silly to have to get rid of that knowledge and experience.

However, my experience tells me that 80% of the time, if the seller stays around, it will not be a positive attitude. They can sour the culture with nothing more than a few comments like, “We never used to do it that way.” Or, employees will play off the new owner and former owner like teenagers play off their parents. I’ve come to the conclusion that it takes a special relationship and special circumstances to make this work.

This rule was not enacted for the above reason, but it still works.

“Everyone is a damn fool for at least five minutes every day. Wisdom consists in not exceeding that limit.”¬†Writer Elbert Hubbard


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