Venn-ever You’re Ready to Get Started & Other Ephemera

Saw someplace a Venn diagram showing the overlap between people who hold that A: businesses are insatiably greedy and will do whatever makes them the most money, and B: businesses promote less qualified men and oppress qualified women as a result of institutional misogyny. I have generalized the point being made below:

Venn

So, here’s the game: list any two positions which are logically incompatible but are held simultaneously by the same people. Then weep as you contemplate the above diagram.

I’ll start:

A: Business control the government – it’s bought and paid for;

B: Businesses move out of America to evade paying taxes.

Comments: So, if business owns the government, wouldn’t it make more sense for Richy McRichperson to simply tell his minions to change the tax laws? This disconnect also leads to the spectacle of Presidents and candidates accusing businesses of the sin of doing what the laws incent them to do as if the government was somehow not responsible for writing those laws in the first place.

Next:

A: I am Woman, hear me roar!

B: Asking women to testify in campus rape hearings would be too retraumatizing! They have suffered enough!

Maybe one more, in case I’m not offending enough people:

A: Gender is a social construct.

B. If my little boy likes dolls, I’m duty bound to get him a sex change operation and only an unenlightened meanie would object.

You?

On a related topic, here in California, politicians and activists are going to dislocate their shoulders if they don’t ease up on patting themselves on the back for two ‘achievements’: the statewide $15/hr minimum wage, and the San Francisco mandatory 6 weeks of paid parental leave for both men and women. Only a really mean Neanderthal (hot off conking his future mate on the head and dragging her to his cave, no doubt) would be so insensitive to point out what this logically motivates businesses to do:

  1. Stop hiring people for jobs that aren’t worth more than $15/hour to me, the business owner. Since there’s also a ton of overhead involved in hiring anybody, getting those jobs done has got to be worth considerably more than $15/hour to me, the business owner, before I’ll risk hiring.
  2. If I’m doing business in San Francisco, I’ve got to not only factor in all of the above, bit add the very real possibility that, if I hire a young person of reproductive age, I might also have to figure he or she is going to cost me 12% more (that’s 6 weeks out of a typical 50 week work year) than someone I’m sure won’t be taking that leave, even if I can miraculously get by for 6 weeks without having to hire a temp or replacement.

What San Francisco will end up with is nothing but big businesses – you know, those evil, selfish dudes who make those obscene profits from which they can pay for these political whims. Smaller, less profitable (less greedy, right?) companies will be forced to leave.

All in all, the message to businesses is clear: Stay out of California. If you must be there, keep as much of your operations out of the state as possible. If you must be in San Francisco, keep your operations to a minimum, and only hire potentially fertile people if you’re one of those evil companies Sanders wants to take over.

That all this is perfectly clear, predictable and logical only means that more people will jump into the orange area of the above graph, where they will not have to think about it. And then, they’ll blame mean businesses when it doesn’t work.

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Author: Joseph Moore

Enough with the smarty-pants Dante quote. Just some opinionated blogger dude.

2 thoughts on “Venn-ever You’re Ready to Get Started & Other Ephemera”

  1. Yes! What a great explanation. I’m reminded of a recent (within the last year or two) ad campaign by the State of New York, inviting business to re-locate to New York and pay no taxes for 10 years, something like that. Trying to make New York attractive to business for the sake of creating jobs for New Yorkers. Sounds good.

    But inevitably people will end up pointing to some business (owned by a Republican no doubt) that takes advantage of the program, thereby providing jobs to New Yorkers, and accuse it of paying no state taxes and while making profits on the backs of its workers, who DO have to pay state taxes. How unfair!

    1. Right. Often, you will hear government officials from the President on down complain about businesses doing exactly what any business person would tell you they would do in response to actions taken by the government, as if those officials are shocked and surprised. Example: the current tax laws favor owning equipment. These laws were set up this way to make it easier for people to get their hands on the equipment they need – bulldozers, copiers, trucks, airplanes, whatever – to run their companies, make money, and hire people – and pay taxes. The mechanism used under the current tax laws to encourage people to buy equipment is to let them defer a certain portion of tax on their income to offset the initial cost of getting the equipment.

      So, what happens? Well, any business person would tell you that sane business people will look to see if they can take advantage of this tax deferral by buying equipment. Turns out it works to buy equipment and lease it to other people to use – the buyer gets the tax deferral, the user gets his equipment at a lower cost than he might otherwise have to pay. (Note: a business owner doesn’t care if he owns the equipment or not – he just needs to use it. It’s just another expense to him.)

      So, Huzzah! A bunch of large, profitable businesses start buying equipment for the sole purpose of leasing it out to people who need it and taking advantage of that tax deferral themselves. It works! More and better equipment gets bought (good for the manufacturer and their employees), businesses get the equipment they need to do their thing at lower cost (good for the lessees and their employees) and the *employees* make income – and pay taxes on that income! So, the taxes do get paid, just down the line by the workers and businesses as a result of increased economic activity.

      But – the outrage! – the companies doing the leasing *pay little if any tax*! Oh no! Congress gets all in a snit, passes AMT, investigations get launched – all because businesses did exactly what any businessperson would tell you they would do – AND exactly what the tax law intended!

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