Monday, June 8, 2009

Corporate Welfare Solution?

There is no such thing as a free market. Check out David Cay Johnston’s “Free Lunch.” The hoax of pure capitalism is ramping up, even after we all just witnessed its disastrous results, with the calls for a Republican redo and their return to fiscal discipline. Think about that.

State governments are competing now in a race to the bottom, spending taxpayer money to lure companies in, by reducing corporate taxes and paying for their relocation. These handouts reduce corporate expenses dramatically, lowering their cost of doing business. Pure capitalism? Fascism? Who cares?

Compare that to the current debate about a public option for universal health care. Yes I can make that comparison.

Republicans and insurance companies complain the government will compete unfairly if they get involved. Yet for them, it is okay for government to get involved doling out tax breaks and handouts to basically “unfairly compete” with other states. This is corporate welfare. Even though a profitable company could pay for the move themselves, they are more than willing to drain state money and taxpayer dollars if given the chance. I know, they typically hate government bureaucracies intruding in the free market system.

Simply put: Governments can compete for business, but governments can’t compete WITH business. When states compete, companies save lots of money, which in turn makes them very happy and should lower the price of their product (it doesn’t, but they’re doing us a favor by giving people lower wage jobs and no benefits).

Government can accomplish the even bigger savings, with fewer taxpayer dollars, no expansive corporate office parks, great benefits and no profit margins. But that’s unfair government meddling. How can a business get their hands on free taxpayer money if the government can do it more efficiently, which in turn, would save citizens out of pocket costs for services? It would be like a giant tax cut, only Republicans couldn’t take credit for it.

Would it be great if Congressional lawmakers passed a law banning corporate hands nationwide for the bigger corporate players who can pay for their own relocation's and company expansions? Why are we, you and me, paying for them to make a profit on us?

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