Well, That Would Be Different, You See

The Absurd Report » The Tax Collector vs. The Constitution by James Huffman

Imagine that one of America’s state legislatures enacts a law exempting a particular company from the state’s corporate income tax. Or imagine that a city within that state adopts an ordinance exempting a particular company from land use regulations and building code requirements.

Outrageous! Neither could possibly pass the test for constitutionality. Surely such special favors would violate our core value of equal treatment under the law.

Actually, it’s perfectly legal:

Tax break draws firms to Mid-Market – SFGate

This week, Twitter is expected to open its new headquarters for 800 employees on Market between Ninth and 10th streets – roughly one year after city leaders enacted the controversial six-year tax holiday on new hires for companies in Mid-Market and the adjacent Tenderloin.

This is actually a good thing. The implications to the Leviathan State, however, are not: If lowering or rescinding taxes on certain businesses is good for the city (the argument here is that the net benefits to San Francisco of having Twitter set up shop here far outweigh the “tax giveaway,”) then why doesn’t that logic work for every business?

In other words, how about a massive tax cut straight across the board?

About Bill Quick

I am a small-l libertarian. My primary concern is to increase individual liberty as much as possible in the face of statist efforts to restrict it from both the right and the left. If I had to sum up my beliefs as concisely as possible, I would say, "Stay out of my wallet and my bedroom," "your liberty stops at my nose," and "don't tread on me." I will believe that things are taking a turn for the better in America when married gays are able to, and do, maintain large arsenals of automatic weapons, and tax collectors are, and do, not.

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