What may be most damaging about California’s tax debate is its tone of desperation. The state is like a man at the end of his rope who has taken hostages—in this case, the schools. Meanwhile, Texas and other states are poaching California jobs with tax incentives at a scale that California state and local governments can’t afford, most recently with the $36 million package of tax breaks and investment funds that convinced Apple Inc. to expand in Austin and add some 3,600 jobs.
California doesn’t do such things, and it’s not out of libertarian principle. It’s because the state just doesn’t have the wherewithal. And it never will, if it can’t learn to live within its means. If the data from migration and job creation send one message above all, it’s that fiscal discipline matters. States that cannot pay their bills lose jobs, people, and wealth to the states that can.
Sunday, September 30, 2012
Toxic State Syndrome: As California Declines, Texas Rises
And yet another one! Hey, all I did was type "california" into google!