Share your opinion about the Economic War Among the States incentive battles: send your email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
All letters received will be considered for posting here on the Economic War Among the States Web site unless you request otherwise. We will include your email address with your letter if you offer it, but not your address or telephone number (although we prefer you include those with your letter.) We reserve the right to excerpt from letters for summary purposes, but full text versions will be available online.
Responses to commentaries posted by others are welcome; and, if the volume of activity warrants it, we'll establish an online bulletin board. Letters will be made available to attendees at the Economic War Among the States Conference May 21 - 22.
Below are excerpts from selected letters. Click on the headline to read the entire letter.
[States]have no choice but to join the battle....
...in the process, our so-called "public servants" .... learn first-hand, at a gut level, what business has to do to survive. - Stu Mahlin
States should concentrate on what they do best: creating sound infrastructres, solid, productive education systems at all levels, and perhaps occaisonal targeted zoning changes, development projects, and broad (as opposed to company-specific) low-level incentives (such as a tax reduciton for a region or county).
Silicon Valley, the Research Triangle did not arise because of competition between states but rather through educational and infrastructural developments... - Matt Harmon
Any official who proposes to give public money to any private company ... should be required to see that the public receives a beneficial ownership holding in the company, equivalent in value to the gifts provided from the public coffers. - Donald L. Maxwell
The Los Angeles Regional Technology Alliance will provide the groundwork for the regional infrastructure necessary to directly assist those firms wishing to develop dual-use technologies, and truly solidify the State's commitment to defense industry diversification.
GOALS: (As specified in our 1996 contract.)
I opened a small business in 1993...
In exchange for this economic stimulus, I have not received one cent from the State or local government, nor do I expect to. But why should I be paying taxes so that these governments can then subsidize other businesses? - George White
"With respect to the bidding wars, the beauty of employee ownership is that worker-owned companies are highly unlikely to relocate out of state in search of lower wages. Why would workers be interested in exporting their own jobs?"
"States would do much better by using their scarce tax resources to promote employee ownership in home-grown companies, rather than trying to lure companies from other jurisdictions for little benefit." - Steve Smela
" I agree completely with the Fed's assessment; federal action is the only way to end this disgraceful waste of our local and state tax dollars. Unfortunately, I think it is pretty unlikely that Congress will address the issue, since intervening would appear to interfere with states rights." - Bob Patton
"Poverty is spreading in America. A woman who recently returned from South America said to me, 'Every time I come home to visit, the U.S. looks more and more like Brazil than the other way around.'"
"Regular people are not involved in these discussions. They aren't at the table. They aren't attending Harvard and they probably don't have e-mail. The median wage in 1995 was $26,000. What will the median wage at the symposium be? And because of that, ideas and ideals like democracy, sovereignty, promoting the general welfare are in jeopardy." - Emilie F. Nichols
"My comments are based on business subsidy research I conducted in Indiana. I examined several state and local tax abatement and training grant programs. Data for 1993 were obtained for 2,873 individual firms. "
"It is assumed that public investments will produce a highly skilled workforce and rising standards of living. However, there is little accountability and incentives seldom are linked to performance." - Jeff Vincent