The Lone Star (business) State

What do you make of Texas Governor Rick Perry campaigning in New York to lure our businesses to his state? He has done the same in California, Connecticut and Illinois. In New York he spent a million bucks in television and radio ads to promote Texas as a better place to do business.

He has been making his pitch to enterprises in states that whack their businesses with a lot of taxes. And ensnarl them in thickets of regulations. States which sock their residents with a lot of taxes. New York is certainly expert in all of that.

Some New Yorkers feel this campaigning is unfair. They call it poaching.

But the governor pooh poohs their objections. He says it’s not much different than a football coach flying in from out of state to recruit kids to play at his school.

When people complain he tells them he is simply offering businesses more opportunity.

Lately, that has certainly been the case in Texas. Run your business in a state that has no income tax. You will have the opportunity to make more money than in New York. Operate in a state where there are sensible limits against people suing you unreasonably. You have that same opportunity.

As he puts it in the ads, “If you’re tired of the same old recipe of over-taxation, over-regulation and frivolous litigation, get out before you go broke.” And “Texas is calling. Your opportunity awaits.” To make his point he posed in front of a storefront near Times Square. It held a big sign: “Going Out of Business. Everything must go.”

If you look at the stats on the two states, New York doesn’t look so good. And Texas doesn’t look so bad. Lots of Fortune 500 companies have located there. Wages are high. Taxes are zero. Unemployment is well below New York’s.

Also, the cost of living is much lower than New York’s. A much higher percentage of kids graduate from high school there. Employers like that. And they like the fact that only 6 percent of Texas workers are in a union. While 23 percent of New York workers are.

Building permits in Texas last year were nearly six times greater in number than in New York. Three times as many jobs were created there last year as in New York.

And magazines like Chief Executive Magazine rank Texas as the best state in which to do business, bar none. Those who rank states for business usually drop New York to the bottom of the heap.

Hey, we’re New Yorkers. We can take it. We have for years. We are used to the taxes. We are used to the obstacles bureaucrats throw up for those who want to open businesses. Or to enlarge them.

We are used to the endless excuses from downstate politicians. When they consider the problems of upstate. Wherever that is. We are used to the promises of every governor. We forget them almost as quickly as he does.

So…altogether all you business owners and operators. Let’s send a rousing message to that cocky Governor Perry. “Governor! What’s the name of that department you mentioned in your ad?”

From Tom ... as in Morgan.

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