"A government big enough to give you everything you want, is big enough to take away everything you have"
Thomas Jefferson

Monday, May 18, 2009

More On Golisano

This is a lift from a post on The Neighborhood Retail Alliance. It is an interesting perspective on the issue and the Working Families Party Dan Cantor's "selfish" remark. WFP has tight reins on the Senate Democrats; they are large contributors financially as well as providing ground troops for Senate Democrats during campaigns and thus control some of their agenda including the tax increase that caused Golisano to flee NY.

And here is another take on the Golisano issue by E.J. McMahon, read Golisano Gone

Posted by Neighborhood Retail Alliance.

Tom Golisano is taking his leave of New York State and his departure, while failing to conjure up any real feelings of loss and regret, does make an important statement: "New York billionaire Tom Golisano is taking his big bucks elsewhere. Furious over a new "millionaire's tax" that could cost him an extra $1 million this year, the Rochester-area resident and three-time gubernatorial candidate says he's fleeing the state for Florida's Gulf Coast."

You see, when you continue to raise taxes on the wealthy-not to mention all of the businesses taxes and fees-it is bound to eventually create the kind of blowback that Golisano's departure represents. You can gnash your teeth all you want about this, but it doesn't change a thing. These kinds of policies are counterproductive-no matter how self righteous their proponents are. And, speaking of self righteousness, how about the reaction to the Golisano going from the WFP's Dan Cantor: "Working Families Party Executive Director Dan Cantor, who championed the tax hike, called Golisano's move "selfish." "It's a disgrace that this is how he pays back the state where he was presumably educated and that's been so good to him," Cantor said. "Taxes are the price you pay for civilization. He's moving to a space where there's a little bit less civilization."

How sour are the grapes here? Golisano has been a major philanthropist in New York; and he's repaid by the confiscators for his generosity with additional levies needed to compensate for their public profligacy. As the Business Council's Ken Adams tells the Post: "What kind of message does it send when a self-made entrepreneur, incredibly successful billionaire, throws in the towel on New York state?" said state Business Council President Kenneth Adams. "He's a bold-faced name making a bold move, but he follows hundreds of thousands of people who have already done the same thing."

Yes, we're driving the wealthy and business out of the state. And we have a politics that is driven by the WFP folks who, if allowed to get their way, will soon have us repeating the debacle of the 1970s; trying to run a socialist government in a capitalist economy. It appears that those sober lessons haven't really been learned.


Anonymous said...

Dan Cantor is an outspoken guy, but he is no dope. I am still waiting to see some numbers on the "hundreds of thousands" leaving the state. I can't find 'em anywhere.

Anonymous said...

You can't find the thousands that are fleeing this State????

Just walk down the streets of any of the cities in the Carolinas. You are more likely to see someone from upstate NY, than if you walk around Public Square for a week.

Attend one of the many college graduation ceremonies north of the Thruway, and ask the graduates where their job prospects are. Clearly, they will be south of here.

Attend any of the many senior citizen functions held throughout the area. You will hear endless tales of adventures far to our south, and how many of the seniors have decided that they will no longer return to NNY.

Attend any Central NY Business Council meetings, and you will be struck by the number of businesses, large and small, that are heading for the 'greener'pastures of the south and central States.

The outmigration from NY has been going on for many years, now. But it has picked up considerable momentum in the past few months.

See ya on the Beach!

hermit thrush said...

i think there's an important distinction that gets a bit lost in a lot of these discussions, and that's the difference between nys as a whole vs. upstate/downstate vs. just nny. i get the impression (perhaps wrongly so!) that a lot of commenters around here really do view their little local slice of nny as a proxy for the whole state. but that often leads to a distorted perspective on statewide matters -- it's a really big and diverse state! and i don't mean that in any way at all to invalidate people's individual experiences -- quite the contrary! it's a just a reminder that there's often a lot more going on than we can see immediately around us.

which is a longwinded way to get back to the topic of population and taxes and whatnot. so far as i'm aware, it's completely correct that upstate has been losing population, or at least hasn't been gaining it at a rate anywhere near sufficient to keep up with the rest of the country. upstate will almost certainly lose a congressional district when the lines are redrawn following the 2010 census. so i can sort of understand why people would think the state is going to hell! except, well, there's a lot of evidence to the contrary!

my friends on the right around here seem to overwhelmingly point to high taxes as the culprit behind the state's woes. but i have to ask them, what about downstate? downstaters pay the same taxes -- actually, i'd guess most pay more -- yet downstate has been adding population. via andrew sullivan's blog, look at this recent survey of new college grads on the most desirable place to start their careers. the #1 choice: new york city, by an overwhelming margin (and the top 8 are all big cities in "high"-tax blue states). like it or not, downstate is the economic engine that powers the state, and it seems to be doing just fine relative to other parts of the country/world, despite that tax burden.

if taxes are really the answer, why is upstate faring so poorly compared to downstate?

Anonymous said...

I can't understand some business leaving Jefferson Co. where the JCIDA recently "cut" interest rates for successful businesses through their request. Where we funded a "brain" center only to have it close in 1 week. Where numerous business leaders give the taxpayers the "business" through various tax schemes. Why would they leave???

Anonymous said...

Hermie: People have flocked to the Cities for decades, to make their fortune. And NYC will ALWAYS be the poster child for urban opportunity. As the song says, "If you can make it there, you can make it anywhere." (Pertains to cities in general.)

I travel across ALL of NY, NE, and the Atlantic States, and work with local governments, Contractors and Consultants. Watertown, and Jefferson County, has it FAR better than most counties around NY. And the economic outlook here, compared to nearly ALL the other Atlantic States, is DISMAL. That means that the preponderance of NY (land area) is hopelessly caught in an Appalacian downturn. It is a vortex of endless income and property taxes, fees, red tape, high interest and significant energy costs (for heat, transportation, processing)

Once our hometown banks were bought out by the mega-institutions, our regional capital has been vacuumed away. Our extraction industries has suffered from lack of economy-of-scale compared to other regions, and the big processeors have all pulled out. All that are left are small-town-operators.

This region will NEVER rebound to above a minimal-sustenance level for more than a small population. There is NO manufacturing, NO extraction industries, NO value-added processing industries in NNY. Those that remain are doomed to a domestic-based (read: service) economy which will provide care (waitressing, hospitality, healthcare, retailing, and people-warehousing) for tourists and those populations that no one else wants to cater to.

Fast forward 20 or 40 years, and show me that I am wrong.

hermit thrush said...

dear anon 9:29,
thanks for your comments. i'd be very interested to hear you elaborate more on this:

Watertown, and Jefferson County, has it FAR better than most counties around NY. And the economic outlook here, compared to nearly ALL the other Atlantic States, is DISMAL.

just to be clear, i also want to reiterate that i'm not saying that everything is hunky dory and that upstate is actually faring well economically -- no, not at all. my point is just that if high state taxes are the problem, then how can the even-more-highly-taxed parts of the state doing so much better?

Anonymous said...

"then how can the even-more-highly-taxed parts of the state be doing so much better?"

Who says the cities are doing better? The cities are in poor economic health, too. That is because growth does not pay for itself. It's a ponzi. That is why the country runs trillion $ deficits, with its own treasury, and with the other nations of the world.

It also depends on your definition of 'better'.

It is the individuals who do better. That is because cities present 'critical mass', and therefore more opportunities. The greater the critical mass, the larger the 'bureaucracy' required to run the community. I am not referring to the official gov. bur., but viewing the city as a big ant hill. The more industry and workers there are, the more services are required. Once large enough, the service industry then spawns its own service industry, etc.

Economic development is spawned in cities, not in fallow fields. At one time, they were located near sources of power or materials. Once power transmission was conquered, they were located near sources of capital.

And please do not confuse economic activity with economic development. A whittler can show you all kinds of activity, but his efforts would barely feed himself. 15 shoe stores is not more development than 5 shoe stores (or fast-food, or car dealers, etc.) That is just more of the same: low pay retail, where the only necessary training is: "Can I help you?".

Watertown's hey day was when we manufactured items that the rest of the country needed. We created our wealth. Selling t-shirts and nachos to tourists, E-3s, and prisoner families will NEVER put us in the same category.

Anonymous said...

Do not refer to the man/woman/transwhatever as "hermie. As soon as you take apart some of his arguments, he gets his feelings hurt, then runs. Then you're gonna feel real bad.

hermit thrush said...

anon 9:15,

Who says the cities are doing better? The cities are in poor economic health, too. That is because growth does not pay for itself. It's a ponzi. That is why the country runs trillion $ deficits, with its own treasury, and with the other nations of the world.

i don't think that makes sense. aside from a little parenthetical comment above, i've said nothing about "cities" in general (god, look at detroit!), but only about upstate vs. downstate. do you really mean to suggest downstate isn't clearly doing better than upstate -- basically no matter how you define the word "better"?

and "growth does not pay for itself"? huh? that's precisely to say that all of us, everywhere, we're all fiscally doomed -- that we'll never see enough economic growth to pay off the investment needed for the growth in the first place! i don't think history's on your side there. of course, right now everywhere in the country is in tough economic shape, which i think has something to do with the worst recession since the depression. but it was only last decade that the federal government was running a surplus and paying down debt, and places like nyc boomed. i don't see why it's a ponzi scheme at all.

Anonymous said...

NY is just a microcosm of the national issue. As we increase taxes on the wealthy and businesses, many of them will choose to relocate to other states or countries. We are soon to loose "wall street" to NJ or CT because of business taxes - but it won't stop there - why would any business choose to locate its headquarters in the US if our taxes place them at a disadvantage to world competition. Exxon Mobile can work just as well being headquartered in Ireland as is is in the US. To hell with the BILLIONS that they paid in taxes. The progressives in Washington have their heads in the sand if they think that this isn't going to happen.

Anonymous said...

why aren't you all complaining about calling your local customer service number (Directv, HSBC, credit card companies, and all the others) and getting your answers from India or VietNam or wherever. No one hollered when the Lord God Halliburton relocated in Dubai, for Ch***t's sake. wake up and die right.
ore than 50 of the top 100 defense contractors are foreign companies-how much do they pay in taxes? Why are Cayman Island corps untouchable? Because the GOV"T ALLOWS IT!!!! Who do you think the Carlyle Group is? Why do you think they own or owned major defense firms? Why didn't you all whine and cry (and I mean you too Francis) when the gov't bought 80 million doses of Tamiflu from Roche, who bought the papent from Gilead, i.e., Rumsfeld. He still makes 14-22% of H-LaR's wholesale sales of the flu virus. Where's the outrage? If Paterson had done that you'd all be marching to Albany, lattes in hand.

Anonymous said...

Tony, for your infomation, the Cayman Islands is ANOTHER COUNTRY. Government allows tax breaks to exist there because it is NOT OUR COUNTRY. We can't dictate tax laws in OTHER COUNTRIES.

I am glad you included the obligatory BS about Halliburton and defense contractors etc. It is comforting that you memorized such blather. But you should know, Tony, that most all companies try to make money. See, they get in business to sell something for more than it costs to produce it. They try to pay less in taxes, thus make more money. That's true for defense companies, global warming companies, even companies that make pills for idiots.

My God, please save us. Or at least put us out of our misery.

Hey, is there a listening to fools tax? If so, we would be sure to have a balanced budget here in the
Empire State.

Anonymous said...

" . . . i've said nothing about "cities" in general . . . but only about upstate vs. downstate."

Here is a bulletin for you. Apparently you are not aware that 'downstate'refers to the greater metropolitan area that includes New York City. Upstate is everything north of Westchester County, often referred to 'rural' NY, although upstate has a population roughly comparable to NYC. It is NYC and Yonkers that are the 'higher taxed' parts of the State.

". . . do you really mean to suggest downstate isn't clearly doing better than upstate"

That is precisely what I DID say. And I explained why. It was once referred to as the gravitational theory of urban influence.

And, NO, growth does not pay for itself.3 years of govt surplus during the dot.com era (shit, EVERYONE made money THEN) out of nearly 40 years of deficits does not substantiate that growth pays for itself.

Wanna split some more hairs? Better brushup on economic theory.

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