As we cruise toward election day the silly season is upon us and especially on Facebook. Here is Robert Reich
and other was Jon Stewart saying ( i paraphrase) that business folk complying with the law to get tax breaks get atta boys while individuals are made fun of. As it is a Facebook quote we don’t know the backstory but there are certainly lots of examples of corporate leaders be brought before Congress or attacked by various politicos for following the law.
Reich’s quote is more interesting. Customers do create jobs. That is what businesses do. They try meet customer’s needs. Of course, many businesses are not successful and they go away. Successful businesses meet customer’s needs and grow and create jobs. Businesses have done spectacular things for customers. The device you read this on and the Internet that delivers it amazes old folks like MWG.
The implication of Reich’s quote is that we give money to “customers”. We tried Reich’s idea by spending a little short of a trillion dollars trying to get customers to ignite employment. It was, at best, a non-success. At the same time we have increased regulation and, often, the cost of labor. Businesses have been slow to expand and tended to choose capital rather than labor.
An idea with a higher likelihood of success is to reduce the regulatory burden on businesses. MWG has often commented on business taxes. A serious proposal would be to eliminate corporate taxes entirely. There are both specific and general parts of the burden beyond that. An easy one is to approve Keystone XL pipeline. It is time to try something that might work. Our faith in the Republicans snatching defeat from the jaws of victory is high but we live in hope.