Let us give texas a great big clap, they figured out how to attract companies by giving welfare to the rich.

“In New York City, the elected — not the mayor, not the governor, but a lot of the elected — they don’t want business,” he said. “They didn’t let Amazon come in and build a whole new thing there.”

In 2019, Amazon backed out of plans to locate part of its second headquarters in New York after criticism from politicians including US Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez over government incentives offered to the company. While the e-commerce giant eventually signed a lease in New York’s Hudson Yards neighborhood with enough space for more than 1,500 workers, that was far fewer than the 25,000 the company had initially planned to add in Queens. Source

Is there a cost to those freebies for rich people and companies?

There are 19 billion reasons why the talk of Texas for the past two days has been a lengthy front-page New York Times investigation by Louise Story, part of a series on how state and local economies are changed by tax incentives.  Source

As in $19 billion: the annual haul in tax breaks Governor Rick Perry and Texas give out to help lure businesses around the state. As Story wrote:

Under Mr. Perry, Texas gives out more of the incentives than any other state, around $19 billion a year, an examination by The New York Times has found. Texas justifies its largess by pointing out that it is home to half of all the private sector jobs created over the last decade nationwide….

Yet the raw numbers mask a more complicated reality behind the flood of incentives, the examination shows, and raise questions about who benefits more, the businesses or the people of Texas.

Along with the huge job growth, the state has the third-highest proportion of hourly jobs paying at or below minimum wage. And despite its low level of unemployment, Texas has the 11th-highest poverty rate among states….

At the New Republic, Alex MacGillis noted that he covered some of this same territory in a 2011 profile of Rick Perry:

But even I was shocked at some of what Times reporter Louise Story turned up, including the role of a tax consultant by the name of G. Brint Ryan. Ryan, who typically gets a 30 percent cut of the incentive award he secures for companies, has helped companies get tax incentives in more than half the states in the country, but specializes in Texas, where he and his wife have contributed more than $4 million to state politicians since 2000, and where more than a third of the awards from one of the state’s biggest incentive programs, more than $80 million, has gone to Ryan clients.

“I strongly encourage you to read the whole thing, and reflect on the systemic atmosphere of corruption that surrounds the “race to the bottom” of state and local government officials happy to trade off revenues, regulations, every law or ordinance protecting the citizenry, and every shred of self-respect, in exchange for the right to grip-and-grin with “job-creators” at ground-breaking and ribbon-cutting ceremonies,” wrote Ed Kilgore of Washington Monthly, who went on to argue that it’s wrong to assume low taxes and wages are more important than education and quality of life in stimulating economic development. He also called Perry “a throwback, a caveman in a necktie.”

But at the Daily Caller, Jeb Golinkin had a different point of view:

New York Times investigation has uncovered a shocking scandal they would have you believe involves big corporations blackmailing your state government and stealing tax dollars that should be spent on public education. . . . This scandal, though not identified as such in the article, is called federalism. It finds its roots in the 10th Amendment of the United States Constitution.

An Austin resident, Golinkin scoffed at the fact that Travis County officials fretted in the piece about the way such companies as Apple and Hewlett-Packard are able to dicate their own terms. 

There is a reason that Texas is near the bottom of quite a few things, including that Texas keeps electing politicians that are easily bought. Even the sales tax is a way to shift the tax burden to the middle class and lower class. But the elected officials want the constituents dumb.

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