Home Virginia Politics Parsing GOP Poison in one AP “News” Story : Bob McDonnell and...

Parsing GOP Poison in one AP “News” Story : Bob McDonnell and Jobs


The AP tells us that Bob McDonnell trotted out one of the most oft used, but pathetic lines of today’s GOP, that employers have to know that it’s “safe” to invest in jobs in Virginia again.

He said the state needs to convince small businesses that it’s again safe to risk the money it takes to start new ventures or expand.

That load of GOP propaganda does not pass muster.  BTW, I could not find a reference in the press release to the supposed “safe” language.  (Not that Mickey D is above using it.) Safe for business?  We’ve had two very pro-business Democrats who produced repeated rankings as Best Place to Do Business.  Bob McDonnell goes on an overseas trip.  Then he trots out a press release about his grand efforts at job production.  He grandstands.  Show me the jobs.  Show me the competent management we got under Mark Warner and Tim Kaine.

I actually agree with Mickey D on one thing (a first?), that the BPOL needs to be reconsidered and/or reformed.  Taxing gross revenue rather than profit seems, well, just plain wrong.  Should it be reconsidered, however, localities which depend upon it must be allowed to develop other revenue streams.  And the legislature is wont to permit that. The heavy hand of Richmond (via the legislature) should cease. But that’s only the half of how the GA hamstrings localities.  But none of his suggestions in any way make a legitimate case for it not having been “safe” for companies to come to Virginia.  Indeed the evidence is in the opposite direction.

One thing is clear, governments must care about the quality of the communities which seek to recruit business.  And that takes tax revenue.  Companies generally look to locate in desirable places.  Communities suffering neglect at the hands of long-term Republican domination of the House of Delegates will continue to deteriorate and their infrastructure crumbles more every day.

Truth is also that the economic downturn of 2007 occurred because of the policies of George, W. Bush, Bush’s failure to act in a timely manner, and the persistent efforts by his administration to undo or ignore even reasonable regulations.  So, if it is unsafe for business, then that was brought to us by GWB.  GWB’s economy was unsafe for everyone.  But Mickey D, who never met a tax cut that he didn’t like, thinks that makes him and Virginia “safe” for business?  

The press release included this language:

Virginia’s current tax structure is burdensome, affects some businesses unevenly and unfairly, while stifling growth, discouraging job creation and perpetuating competitive disadvantages in key industries.

It’s all the usual claptrap.  Not all regs are bad, as we learn from the utter lack of honesty in ratings agencies, the deception in the derivatives market, credit default swaps, etc.The absence of such needed regs has cost this country dearly.

A larger issue is whether corporations should be permitted to shakedown states and localities for essentially getting services for free and a tax-free ride for (in some cases) 20 years.  The company might be long gone before they ever pay their fair share.  And they claim that the infusion of payroll into the area is enough.  It is not. Infrastructure costs money–from all users.  It is, or should be, a cost of doing business for large consumers of resources.

Truth is that  as hard as the economy has hit Virginia, other states have fared worse. Portions of Virginia such as Southside and SW Virginia have been particularly hard hit.  But persistent problems with out-sourcing Southside jobs have is hardly only a Dem idea.  Indeed, Virginia Dems routed Harris Miller largely due to his serving as an apologist for outsourcers.  But many more Dems and Republicans oppose Miller’s view that.  

Republicans even oppose the stimulus and confuse it with the bank bailout, which occurred under GWB.  And then the GOP tries to rewrite history.  It can’t even manage its own finances, yet hopes to talk Americans into given them the keys to the store once again.  Americans were fooled in 2000 (and fooled again in 2004).  Virginians were fooled in 2009.  If they are fooled by the Grand Old Party of Incompetence again, shame on them.  BPOL notwithstanding, being tough to the extent of being at least fair, on balance, has not been, a Virginia political inclination. It’s Tax-cutting Bob-Foolery.


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