Your Letters: Think tank wrongly pointed at conservatives
A recent editorial opinion article written by the executive director and fellow for Minnesota 2020 severely criticized conservative policy makers for nearly all of Minnesota's ills, including health care, education, transportation and economic gr...
A recent editorial opinion article written by the executive director and fellow for Minnesota 2020 severely criticized conservative policy makers for nearly all of Minnesota's ills, including health care, education, transportation and economic growth problems. Unfortunately, this article was long on negative, partisan opinion, but short on factual supporting data. Minnesota's fiscal, economic and job growth problems have not been caused by conservative policies; rather, they have emerged from several years of high taxation, "out of control" spending and unnecessary regulation by liberal policy makers. For example, based on IRS and U.S. Small Business Council data, Minnesota currently ranks as the fifth highest taxing state in the nation on individuals and the highest taxing state in the entire nation on small businesses.
Also, when comparing states with similar geographic and economic profiles, Minnesota extracts substantially more taxes per capita than surrounding states like Wisconsin, Iowa and South Dakota. Total state taxes per capita in 2010 were as follows: Minnesota $3,245, Wisconsin $2,527, Iowa $2,235, South Dakota $1,602 and national average $2,282. As a result, Minnesota has earned a well deserved reputation as a "business hostile" state. Is it any wonder why business investment and jobs (even by companies domiciled in Minnesota) are moving to other states?
Policy makers, from both the left and right, need to move beyond bike trails, parades and football stadiums and deal with the real issues inhibiting long term business investment and jobs in Minnesota. Minnesota's fiscal and economic growth problems will not be solved by continuing liberal "tax and spend" big government policies. Minnesota needs lower taxes, less regulation, private sector investment and job growth rather than more government spending and control. Private sector growth will, by definition, resolve the state's fiscal problems.
Minnesota 2020 claims to be a progressive, new media think tank. Unfortunately, this newspaper article appears to be a rehash of the failed, regressive "tax and spend" policies of the past. Perhaps think tank members should put on their "thinking caps" before advocating even higher taxes for Minnesota residents in the future.