Kurt Bouwhuis, Mackinac Center Intern
Yesterday, I came across this headline while reading a blog. The author of the blog post was so proud of the Gov. Jennifer Granholm for bringing all these great jobs to Michigan. I have no problem with attracting new jobs to Michigan, as long as no coercion involved. Sadly, in this instance, the government arbitrarily taxes businesses at different to create an uneven playing field.
Why allow government to decide which businesses will develop in Michigan? Why not allow the market and entrepreneurs decide? It seems odd that we accept the notion of allowing government to manipulate the business playing field, offering unfair advantages to selected businesses.
What sort of signal does this send to all the other established businesses in Michigan? The businesses that has been established for years will pay higher taxes and will not receive special tax breaks. This may offer a slight incentive for some businesses to leave the state.
Imagine if you had played on a competitive soccer team for years. A new player joins your team because of a new regulation placed on the game. All soccer players with last names starting with letters “A-Y” now have to wear 10 pound ankle weights. Since this new player’s last name is Zen, he is not subject to this new regulation. The coach of the competitive soccer team will now seek individuals with a last name that starts with a “Z”, rather than recruiting actual talent. The current players have not done anything wrong, yet are now at an unfair disadvantage. Does this sort of recruitment make sense?
If we know that lowering taxes attracts new business, why not lower taxes for everyone? Low taxes will attract many new businesses and jobs who do not need government’s help to exist.