Gov. Scott Walker is doing more Chicagoland news media than Jay Cutler these days.
Think about this: Illinois's Democrat-run state government raises taxes 67% on personal income and 45 percent on corporations and their taxes are still lower than Wisconsin's! Flatlanders' personal income will be taxed at 5 percent -- up from 3 percent! That compares to Wisconsin's 4.6% to 7.75%. Corporations will be taxed at 7 percent in Illinois* compared to 7.9% in Wisconsin. ( *Accounting for a separate personal property replacement tax, Illinois' effective corporate rate goes to 9.5%.)
Just a wild prediction but I would not be surprised if Walker proposes in his State of the State a few weeks hence, legislation to cut both taxes -- although perhaps phased in over the next few years. Remember this, folks: 15 states have no tax on corporate income at all. The theory there is that corporations can do only two things with their profits, if any:
- Re-invest the money in facilities, equipment, or workers.
- Pay out dividends to stockholders.
The latter is taxed at that point. Why would one want to decrease the former?
This much is certain: Scott Walker is dead serious about growing jobs. That means attracting businesses from out of state and encouraging existing employers by creating a job-friendly climate. Lower taxes and more understandable regulations are part of that formula.
Now, here is the question for our mayoral, aldermanic, and county executive candidates. Do you think your shared revenue stream from state government is about to a) increase or b) decrease?
Are you in Madison or in Dane County going to raise taxes while the state is lowering its tax levels? Not bloody likely. Here is another wild guess: state government will take measures to hold down local taxes that will make levy limits look like a Fisher-Price toy.
But that's the beauty of our federal system. It is why the states are the laboratories of democracy. Good news, my progressive-liberal acquaintances (for you ARE my acquaintances). You don't have to flee to Canada. Just head on down to Rockford!
Wait a minute, I'm getting another insight into the future. Yes, I can see it clearly: Packers 24, Taxing Bears 13.
RTA death watch
Forward Lookout is reporting that State Rep. Robin Vos will introduce a bill to repeal the Regional Transit Authority. Yes, our people have talked to the co-chairman of the Joint Finance Committee about that very subject. In the State Senate, Glenn Grothman says he will do the same in his chamber.
However, there is discussion among Republican legislators and the governor's office about exactly how to do it: either carve out Dane County from existing statute by name, repeal he entire RTA statute, or take a broader swipe at the proliferation of unelected taxing authorities.
Dane County's RTA is preparing a referendum for the April 5 ballot that will be heavy on buses. At least, at first. Here's the thing: Don't need to raise taxes to run more buses. If transportation is a priority, fund it and defund everything else. Manure digesters, anyone?
Again, the raise-my-taxes lobby is persona non grata in this State Capitol.
Awaiting an apology
The Capital Times now asks Is untreated mental illness and substance abuse to blame for Arizona shooting? Is Comrade John a liberal?
Through it all, the New York Times has been disgusting. P.J. O'Rourke says this in the Weekly Standard:
In the matter of self-serving, bitter, calculated cynicism, there wouldn't seem to be much left to prove against the Times. Judging by what I've heard from my fellow conservatives, the issue is decided. The New York Times is a worthless, truthless, vicious institution. But I disagree. I think things are worse than that.
A reaction so disproportionate and immaterial to a news story by a news organization is indicative of trouble in the body politic - trouble almost as severe as that which the Times claims the Giffords shooting indicates. I worry that in the tremors and hysteria of the Times we're seeing the sad end of liberalism.
According to a USA Today/Gallup poll released Wednesday, 42 percent of those asked said that political rhetoric was not a factor at all in the shooting, 22 percent said that it was a minor factor. Most agreed that blaming conservative rhetoric was "not a legitimate point but mostly an attempt to use the tragedy to make conservatives look bad."
"There's still a lot we don't know about the massacre in Arizona, but by now it's quite clear that the alleged shooter, Jared Lee Loughner, was mentally disturbed," says The New Republic.
Liberal hate speech: One of the victims of the shooting, a "self-described liberal" was arrested after he began ranting at the end of a televised town hall meeting about the tragedy. He took a picture of a local tea party leader and yelled "you're dead."