Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Trump and conservative hand-wringing over tax breaks

Today, the conservative National Review has what I believe is supposed to be a hit piece on Donald Trump and the excessive tax breaks he has received from cities for his real estate projects.  See here.

What's funny about this is that conservative groups routinely tout these tax incentives as essential for government to show it is aligned with business, as "public private partnerships" and so on.  Now, the effort to dig up dirt on Trump has even conservative columnists acknowledging that the largesse granted to major corporations and billionaires in the name of economic development may be misguided.  Would they dare to propose reform?!  Here is a pull quote:

 Jared Meyer, a fellow at the Manhattan Institute, noted Trump’s long history of courting public-sector largesse. “All Trump is doing is using his political influence and taking advantage of how naïve lawmakers are on economic-development projects to get special treatment that no one else gets,” Meyer says. “I don’t think it’s fair — definitely not. Even in the debate, he bragged about how he gives politicians of all stripes money so that when he comes calling, they’ll do ‘whatever the hell you want them to do.’ It’s a pretty messed-up system when people can use their money and political influence to get a special deal that no one else can.”

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