…the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) has remedied that deficiency with its study “Rich States, Poor States,” the fifth annual edition of which was released earlier this month. Authored by famed supply-side economist Arthur Laffer,Wall Street Journal economic guru Stephen Moore and ALEC’s own Jonathan Williams, the 100-plus page report looks at economic competitiveness among the 50 states in exacting detail.
The conclusion of the most recent edition: States that embrace free-market principles are beating jurisdictions that prefer big government to within an inch of their lives. As the authors themselves put it, “If we had to summarize the findings of this publication and our comparative analysis of state policy in one sentence, it would be this: Be more like Texas and less like California.”
Riddled with data, “Rich States, Poor States” gives striking testimony to the virtues of unobtrusive government on nearly every page. A comparison between the nine states with the highest and lowest tax burdens, for instance, shows remarkable disparities.
Chief Executive Magazine has released its annual list of best and worse states to do business, and Southern and Mountain-West states dominated the rankings — to the detriment of the two coasts. The top five states in the survey, Texas; Florida; North Carolina; Tennessee and Indiana, are praised by the magazine for their governments’ and lax regulatory policies and low taxes. The 650 CEOs surveyed also apparently like states that have so-called “right-to-work” laws, which restrict union activity
Loudoun County, Va., has a median household income of $119,540, making it the nation’s richest county. Virginia’s Fairfax County is next, with a median household income of $103,010; the median price of a house is $507,800. Third is Howard County, Md., where the median household income is $101,771. These three richest counties have seven nearby high-income neighbors, which include Arlington and Montgomery counties. The nation’s richest counties are close to Washington, D.C., where people come to do good and wind up doing well for themselves.
These 1 percenters are not wealthy right-wing Republicans; they are Obama’s liberals. How can one tell? It turns out that seven of the 10 wealthiest counties in the Washington area voted overwhelmingly for Obama in 2008. These liberals portray themselves as 99 percenters when they are really 1 percenters. They’re simply running a deceitful rope-a-dope, aided by the mainstream media, on the American people.
For 59 out of the last 60 weeks, the weekly jobless numbers have been revised, after the fact, always in the same direction: higher. That’s unheard of.
Those revisions higher make the present week’s unemployment number look better in comparison, more so since the markets often treat the prior week’s revision as an afterthought.
And there is statistical manipulation in the unemployment rate, too. The government’s reported unemployment number doesn’t include people who stopped looking for work, but who want jobs.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics says the unemployment rate is dropping, and fell from 10% in October 2009 to 8.2% now. That’s got the White House and media pundits saying an economic recovery has taken place, and that the President’s stimulus bill, which cost more than $750 billion to date, has driven unemployment down towards 8% as promised.
However, the unemployment rate is the number of people out of work but who are actively looking. The government doesn’t count in that rate the now 6.3 million who have given up and stopped looking for work, but want jobs. That number has grown from 5.7 million in January 2009.
So, this “improvement” in the unemployment rate is artificial — it was due to workers giving up and dropping out of the labor force.
Obama boasted that his $2.3 billion plan would “help close the clean-energy gap between America and other nations.” But other nations now move in the opposite direction. “Countries are cutting these programs because they realize they aren’t sustainable and they are obscenely expensive,” says the American Enterprise Institute’s Kenneth P. Green. In Spain, economists at La Universidad Rey Juan Carlos found that each “green” job cost more than $750,000.
Obama claims that if we “invest” more, we can “create millions of jobs” – but only if we accelerate the “green transition.” What could make more sense? A little push from the smart politicians, and – voila! – an abundance of new jobs and a cleaner, sustainable environment. It’s the ultimate twofer. Except it’s an illusion, because governments do not “create” jobs.