State Subsidies to Attract Corporate Investment Should be Banned

The Real News Network has the interview State Subsidies to Attract Corporate Investment Should be Banned.

EPSTEIN: Well, they do set up this bidding process, and it’s a race to the bottom, and it’s become—as the New York Times series makes clear, it’s become part of the normal culture of doing business now.

How do you stop it? Well, one way you stop it is you take a proposal from a couple of the economists and the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis about 15 years ago, who said that there ought to be a federal law outlawing this kind of tax competition. Everybody would be better off, and even the states realize that. It’s like an arms race. When you get into an arms race, you know that everybody’s worse off. So you ought to have a law against it.

I have been thinking for a long time that the only way to stop this race to the bottom inside the country is to prevent it on a national level. I am glad to see this idea is getting some publicity.

With the constitutional mandate that only the Federal Government can regulate interstate commerce, I would think such a law would be a natural.

If we can do it within a country, there is no reason we couldn’t have international negotiations for nations to take back power from corporations.

I think The New York Times series referenced in the video begins with As Companies Seek Tax Deals, Governments Pay High Price. This article is the first in three part series. I had already posted a link to the second part in the series in my previous post Lines Blur as Texas Gives Industries a Bonanza. The third part is the article Michigan Town Woos Hollywood, but Ends Up With a Bit Part.

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