Cities across North America are bidding to have Amazon locate its secondary headquarters in them. (Spoiler Alert: It will be built in Austin because turning Texas blue is a critical proggie objective.) A lot of localities are offering Amazon incentives and deals that would make the NFL blush. New Jersey is offering a straight-up bribe of $10,000 for each job creates. Boston is offering to put city-paid employees directly to work for Amazon. But Chicago’s proposal really stands out. Chicago is proposing that all the income taxes collected from Amazon’s employees will be kicked back to … Amazon.
Chicago and the state authorities of Illinois have jointly offered to hand Amazon more than $2bn in tax breaks, including $1.32bn of its workers’ income taxes. The scheme, known as a personal income tax diversion, would mean Amazon workers pay full income taxes, but instead of the state getting the money to use for schools, roads and other public services, Amazon would keep it.
The theory, I guess, is that the 50,000 subsidized Amazon jobs would lead to economic growth as its well-paid tech workers purchased goods and services from local business; which sounds a heckuva lot like those “Trickle Down Economics” that Democrats always say don’t work.
If Chicago were to be true to its Democratic-Socialist principles it would tell Amazon, “Tell you what, you locate here, and we will tax the living sh-t out of your revenues, and micromanage your hiring, and regulate you at every turn, and you will smile and say ‘Thank you for allowing us to do business,’ you filthy capitalist running dogs. Also, we expect kickbacks.”
Because that’s how they treat every other business.
It’s really beyond the comprehension of politicians that what they really just need to create a good business environment is to provide good basic municipal services (police, fire, waste management) and a reasonable tax burden.
They don’t understand that concept, but they understand bribes.