As if the Bruton Smith cash giveaway wasn’t enough, the State, local governments and the RDU Airport Authority is about to throw more cash at an even bigger billionaire — Warren Buffett.
Not to get all John Edwards-style class warfare raging here (hypocritically on his part), but give me a break. A man worth $50 billion needs my tax money as an incentive to make a business decision? Please.
This is about the overzealousness of state and local officials to throw mine, yours and all other individuals and small businesses’ confiscated taxes at any sniff of a new job in the name of "economic development." Berkshire Hathaway doesn’t need our money, but they’ll sure as hell take it if it’s offered.
The sheer thought of giving incentives to Berkshire Hathaway just shows how utterly stupid the incentive game is. This is a company with a nearly $216 billion market capitalization!
I keep hoping that these economic developers will get so arrogant and try to make such a horrendous giveaway that the public will finally wakeup and yell, "Stop it now!" Maybe they’re trying for the famous death of a thousand cuts. First Google, then Bruton Smith, now Warren Buffett. Maybe, just maybe, this will be the one that sends people over the edge.
Where are my friends Rob and Chris on the left jumping in with the reverse Robin Hood argument? Where are the environmentalists screaming about subsidizing a greenhouse-gas emitting, ozone destroying inefficient industry like personal corporate aircraft travel? All hands on deck for this fight.
I’ve got nothing against Warren Buffett or his $50 billion fortune. Congratulations to him for his success. Just treat every business and individual the same under the tax code. No special favors, no incentives to do this or that. Is that too much to ask?