It is not in the local governments’ interests to create a race to the bottom. And given Amazon’s size and skills, it is no longer in their own interests to encourage governments to be giving out special tax breaks to its future competitors. Had they though this thorough, played out all of the game theory here, Amazon had the ability to lock in a strategic advantage.
Instead of capturing the lion share of tax breaks for themselves, they could have had the city commit ALL of the incentives to rebuilding the infrastructure around where they were locating the HQ2. Highways, subways, schools, parks, etc. This missed that chance.
Between 1930 and 1980, the rate applied on the highest incomes was on average 81% in the United States, and the rate applied to the highest inherited estates was 74%. Clearly this did not destroy American capitalism, far from it. It made it more egalitarian and more productive, at a time when the United States had not forgotten that it was their level of educational advancement and their investment in training and skills that was the backbone of their prosperity, and not the religion of property and inequality.
Reagan, then Bush and Trump subsequently endeavoured to destroy this heritage. They turned their backs on the egalitarian origins of the country, by counting on historical amnesia and by fuelling identity-based divisions. With the hindsight we have today, it is obvious that the outcome of this policy is disastrous. Between 1980 and 2020, the rise in per capita national income was halved in comparison with the period 1930-1980. What little growth there was, was swept up by the richest, the consequence being a complete stagnation in income for the poorest 50%.
Bruce Sterling’s All Things Facebook is a massive linkdump of the latest-and-greatest reasons to delete Facebook (and possibly put Zuck and Sandberg on trial for crimes against humanity). This morning’s post on Facebook’s tracking of non-Facebook users on Android came from here. Some highlights: * Facebook is the new crapware [Natasha Lomas/Techcrunch]: “Crapware is named…