The jumping off point for expanding SSS to business-related topics is a post I recently wrote for Forbes on why we’ve got to undo the Bush-era tax cuts. My position is pretty self-explanatory, and, I would like to think, pretty obvious: It’s not sustainable to spend 24% of GDP on 15% in tax revenues.
Not that you’d know that from the magical thinking of today’s politics. Whether it’s the mantra of “have the rich pay their fair share” or the supply-side nuttiness that cutting tax rates will boost revenues, there’s precious little engagement with the hard work of crafting policies that will get us spending something closer to what we take in. And yes, that will require both more tax revenue AND spending cuts.
One point that deserves additional attention, however, is the pernicious effect of interest rates and a stagnating economy on businesses. Whether you run a small bike shop or a Fortune 500 company, it’s really hard to operate in such an environment. Capital dries or or gets expensive and inventory is hard to move. The door stops swinging as often.
Any business owner will tell you that they would take higher tax rates and a growing economy over the inverse, any day of the week.
Of course, it would be even better if that was combined with tax code simplification as well. But if rationality on the need for addressing the deficit is in short supply, imagine how hard it would be to get some sanity on that front.