“In American political discourse, those on the side of the sick, poor, and underprivileged tend to favor more federal government intervention,” writes Heartland Institute policy advisor David D’Amato at The Hill. He explains that many “see government as . . . rather like a charity . . .”
Sure, government can act charitably, except that its money isn’t given voluntarily, and the recipients are often not so needy.
Earlier this month, the stock price of electric car company Tesla, Inc. rose high enough to overshadow General Motors. That’s great news for billionaire Elon Musk, Tesla’s CEO. But an Investor’s Business Daily editorial noted, “[T]he company is heavily reliant on taxpayer support.”
Who benefits (in addition to Musk)? “A study published by the National Bureau of Economic Research found that 90% of electric car subsidies go to the top 20% of households,” the editorial stated. IBD added that it was “a lot of welfare-for-the-rich for very little environmental benefit.”
In addition to funding advanced technology, American taxpayers have spent $6.7 billion over the last few decades to subsidize stadiums for wealthy sports team owners. The latest? In Clark County, Nevada, taxpayers forked over $750 million ($354 for every resident) to bribe — er, bring — the Oakland Raiders to Las Vegas.
The ridiculous Minnesota legislation to feed $5 million in state funds to start two shrimp farms almost seems reasonable in comparison. Almost.
“Maybe growing shrimp in Minnesota is a great idea,” admits John Hinderaker of the Center of the American Experiment. “If so, the owners should do what other small businessmen do: either find investors, or get a bank loan.”
Government’s crony capitalism taxes the poor to give to the rich.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.