An op-ed so full of logical errors that the mind boggles to see so many crammed into one article has just appeared in a Pittsburgh newspaper-one with a left leaning editorial page. The author of the piece says she doesn’t believe tax rates affect small businesses and that letting the tax rate go up on January 1st for the top ratepayers is a good thing. After all, that increased revenue would go for good things like social programs and public education. Never mind that the U.S. and its states spend more on education per child than any place on the planet already and that the plethora of social welfare programs cost taxpayers $60,000 per year for each household getting benefits and that does not include Social Security.
She argues that tax rates under President Clinton left us with a surplus. She doesn’t mention that the dot com bubble produced enormous capital gains revenue and that defense spending was slashed-the so called peace dividend. Nor does she mention that the Republican controlled House forced welfare reform and held the line on spending far better than the President would have done otherwise.
She blames the Bush tax cuts for the deep recession. Au contraire, it was not the tax cuts, it was the insanity of the housing bubble-a product of Democrat social engineering and loose monetary policy-that plunged the economy into a deep dive. So little actual knowledge of what happened has enabled Democrats to foist blame on to Bush for their own disastrous policy efforts.
The writer hints at but does not acknowledge that she is part of a group called "sustainable businesses" and is a certified B Corp, both of which have strong social and environmental agenda and are far less worried about profits and growth than they are supporting liberal causes. That’s fine if she wants to be in that line of business, it’s a free country. But don’t go lecturing other businesses about what is important economically when that is not your main concern.
Finally, the author does not tell us that she is a very small business-fewer than ten people, maybe even as low as four according one website-and that her work is free from many of the environmental and other regulations that plague larger "small" businesses. Obamacare is not going to force her to decide whether to cut hours or people to remain profitable.
In short, the op-ed is useless as a guide to economic policy. It is a liberal’s cry for bigger government for doing social reform and protecting the environment. She does admit if demand for her product was stronger, they might add employees. But rather than hoping for a stronger economy resulting from natural market forces and the profit motive, she wants more government stimulus-the moral equivalent of amphetamines. They might work for a time or two, but quickly becomes addictive and destroys the mind and body. But that is a lesson some people choose not to learn.