APPEL: Louisiana’s Newspapers Have Fallen In Love With Dumb Tax Increases

Well, I have read many of the major editorials this morning and with no exception they all support major taxes increases with no qualification. To some extent I agree that we need revenue through reform, though not necessarily taxes and there is a huge difference!

What I find remarkable is how these editorials fail to realize that there are major implications to blindly accepting the Administration’s push for taxes. Put simply, there is a direct correlation between taxes and jobs.

For instance, one proposal that the Administration floated recently is to reverse the hard won tax code change on how the sale of a business is taxed. The Administration wants to return to the manner in which these sales were taxed up to a few years ago; more or less tax them like regular income. When we did that there was demonstrable link to the large number of businesses that had decamped from Louisiana to evade our tax law, businesses that helped build Houston and Dallas. Why would we return to such bad practices?

There is a simple rule that governs business logic; business locates where there is reasonable expectation that it can make a profit and where it can keep as much of it as possible. The great success of Texas’ implementation of this philosophy over the past decades speaks volumes!

And now many of our state’s editorial boards endorse tax increases with no qualification. Where is the linkage to tax reform? Where is the linkage to spending reform? Where is the linkage to capital expenditure reform? Where oh where is the linkage to desperately needed infrastructure funding?

What has been presented are tax increases to support the status quo. A status quo in which by the latest stats we are already the 18th highest spending state in the country.

I agree that we probably need more revenue; I do not agree that we should blindly accept tax increases, tax increases that will rise dramatically with an improving economy, without linkage to reform.

My question to the editorial boards – is there anything in the past history of the leadership of this state that would give you reason to believe that once taxes are raised there will be any motivation to reform our state’s fiscal structure?

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