March 16, 2017

Art Laffer is the inventor of, and chief salesman for 'Trickle-down Economics,' that grand scheme put forth in the Reagan years that decimated our economy in return for huge tax cuts to wealthy people.

Today he's on the road again, this time selling Trump's crap budget that zeroes out Meals on Wheels, the NEA, PBS, and destroys the State Department.

Laffer spewed his usual nonsense about how rapidly the economy grows when taxes are cut. Why, within 3-4 years, everyone gets more! Prosperity reigns supreme.

Ali Velshi wasn't so quick to let him sell that idea without some pushing.

"So let's go back to 2012 when Kansas and Louisiana both slashed state income taxes for businesses and people, individuals," Velshi said. "Both of them have had shortfalls in the hundreds of millions of dollars every year but state aren't allowed to run deficits."

"So what do you do when a state has a deficit?," Velshi asked, "They cut schools and services. You said two, three, four years. that was four years ago!"

Uhhh, yes, Mr. Laffer. What DO you do? You lie, of course.

"Yes, that's very true, and in Kansas the cut was very small," he replied.

Hmmmm. I'm going to go out on a limb here and say the tax cut wasn't all that small when it took billionaires like Charlie Koch entirely off the hook with regard to any state tax at all. That exemption for pass-thru income? That's how Charlie gets paid.

Laffer immediately shifted to Tennessee, claiming it had the lowest taxes in the nation and the best schools, and yada yada. People moving there in droves!

Beyond the obvious fallacies he spewed there, he forgot to mention one key fact. Immigrants are driving Tennessee's economy.

Tennessee is home to more than 322,000 immigrants with nearly $6 billion in annual spending power.

That’s according to the bipartisan New American Economy, which released state-specific data Tuesday that highlights the economic contributions of immigrants in their communities. Nashville business and city leaders held a press conference Tuesday to unveil the data and urge state legislators to make Tennessee a welcoming place for immigrants.

“First of all, immigrants fill workforce gaps in the economy that are important to maintaining our ongoing prosperity, said Ralph Schulz, CEO of the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce. “We have immigrants in small businesses, in large businesses, a wide range of industries.”

Unfortunately, Velshi didn't really have an opportunity to slap back on that, because of course. So viewers were left with the impression that the REAL problem with Kansas is that they're just not cutting taxes enough, instead of the obvious answer.

What we all should take away from this is the larger picture, as he described it in Tennessee. Cutting taxes for everyone and getting rid of immigrant labor means menial jobs that don't pay the bills for all!


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