Monday, June 7, 2010

Arthur Laffer is still the man

Some common sense economics from Arthur Laffer in today's Journal regarding taxation

People can change the volume, the location and the composition of their income, and they can do so in response to changes in government policies.

It shouldn't surprise anyone that the nine states without an income tax are growing far faster and attracting more people than are the nine states with the highest income tax rates. People and businesses change the location of income based on incentives.

Likewise, who is gobsmacked when they are told that the two wealthiest Americans—Bill Gates and Warren Buffett—hold the bulk of their wealth in the nontaxed form of unrealized capital gains? The composition of wealth also responds to incentives. And it's also simple enough for most people to understand that if the government taxes people who work and pays people not to work, fewer people will work. Incentives matter.

Oh my, who wants to listen to common sense these days? So if you make it easier to not work, more people will...not work? Huh. You need to read this editorial.

Most people who are rich didn't get there by being stupid and those who have the means to shift their wealth around to avoid taxes will do so. Obama and his cronies are promising to soak the rich but when the rich respond by moving their money into something with lower tax exposure, guess who is going to get left holding the bill for Obamacare, the "stimulus bill", state and municipal pension bailout, union payoffs, "climate change", etc.? You are. Congratulations, under Obama you are about to become part of the "rich"!

Now fork over your wallet.
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