Boeing And The Pro-Business Government

787 Dreamliner
787 Dreamliner

Conservatives are often accused of being pro-business while Liberals consider themselves more pro-people and therefore the better of the two.

As a conservative, I accept that accusation and wear it proudly. I am pro-business.

Liberals, in their desire to be more pro-people than pro-business, though, haven’t the foggiest idea they’re actually hurting people more than helping them.

The illustration today comes from the far north-west corner of the contiguous 48, Seattle.

Boeing has just decided to not build it’s new 787 Dreamliner factory in Seattle. The taxes and regulatory environment is simply too taxing. It costs Boeing too much money to expand their operations in Seattle, and so they’ve moved to North Carolina.

In Seattle it would have taken years to navigate the permit process to build the massive new hangars. In North Carolina, it took days.

Because the government of Seattle and Washington state have failed to make it easy enough for businesses to begin, run, and maintain operations, thousands of jobs will be lost directly, or moved to North Carolina, and the myriad of dependent suppliers and small businesses which were supported by the employees of Boeing will lose most or all of their income.

So the liberal mind says “Yes! We showed that polluting monster who’s boss!”. And the conservative shakes their head.

Many people will move from Seattle to North Carolina now to continue working. These are productive and well-payed people who likely paid significant taxes on their income to Seattle and Washington state. With even less tax revenue the city and the state will have to decrease social services to the unproductive public teat slurpers.

Now that can’t make the liberals happy. So they’ll raise taxes on the poor saps left behind so they don’t have to lose any of their bought-off voting bloc.

North Carolina is directly benefiting from increased construction in the short term, and a massive influx of highly skilled jobs as well as the necessary social structures and new markets for delis and theatres and parks and playgrounds. By being pro-business North Carolina will reap the benefits of massive growth in tax revenue without even raising their tax rates.

There’s nothing pro-people about an anti-business environment.

There are caveats or qualifications to 100% business centric government that I believe are reasonable and necessary.

First, I don’t agree with any government, federal, state, or local, applying special tax breaks and exemption from processes for the purpose of attracting a single company. North Carolina has pushed through a deal that makes it easier for Boeing to operate in that state than an average business started by Joe Entrepreneur. Overall, the state is still much easier to work in than Seattle, but I believe, on principle, that the fact the state government had to scramble to build this special package should have indicated their overall regulatory and business environment isn’t quite what it ought to be for everybody.

Second, government regulation is often pro-specific-business rather than anti-general-business. Al Gore profits measurably from “green” technology. He’s put his money where his mouth is. Pro-green regulation benefits him directly as companies will work with his outfits to implement the required changes.

Regulation can also be pushed by large corporations which will still effect them, but because they are so much larger, the monetary penalty will be a much smaller percentage of the large company’s operating costs than for a small company. The small company will no longer be able to compete as the regulatory costs hit them hardest.

Regulation can also be used to stifle competition and build artificial barriers to the self-regulating abilities of the free market. Network Neutrality is an example of this. Google and other large content companies are the primary supporters and lobbyists for network neutrality. They are dependent on the infrastructure companies, such as AT&T to actually get their content to the end users, and they want to use the bludgeon of federal regulation to protect them from free market pressures brought by the carriers.

With the caveats that pro-business should mean, in an ideal world, pro-all-businesses, we find that a pro-business government environment is directly pro-people as well.

If governments realized the nature of this, there would be a race to the bottom in taxation and government leanness as states vied for the privilege of being the best for business. And the growth in business would mean more employed people, higher standard of living, and more tax revenue.

The final question is: are they willfully or ignorantly blind?

Previous articles on the free market:

Net Neutrality: Taken For Fools

I, Pandora has had a mixed history on Network Neutrality.

Network what?

Network Neutrality is one response to fears that infrastructure and service companies, such as AT&T, Verizon, and Comcast, spell doom for the freedom of the internet as they inevitably begin controlling access to content, enhancing access to content they own, control, or partner with, and limiting access to content they deem contrary to their best interest.

The majority of Network Neutrality supporters want the FCC to step in and set rules requiring the infrastructure/service companies provide equal access to all content and forbidding them from interfering in any way with the freedom of the internet.

Sounds good, right?

As with any other debate, you have to get to the deeper issues. And this debate is rife with deeper issues.

When I first heard of Network Neutrality I was gung-ho for it. I did not understand the goals at the heart of this push.

“Don’t be hasty, master Hobbit!”

There was a reason liberal Democrat leaders were more for this program than Republicans and conservatives. Liberals dream of more regulation and control and private and free systems. The freer the system the stronger the urge to a liberal to regulate it.

My confusion over Network Neutrality did not continue long. I supported it in March of 2007, and by August of that year I wrote about the inherent conflict between government regulation and innovation.

Government regulation is the enemy of innovation.

In the arguments over Net Neutrality, I feel for the plebes. I don’t want my traffic throttled any more than it already is by the ISP. But is it the government’s responsibility to control this? And if we allow the government to say who can access the internet and at what speed, where is our moral authority when the government wants to say who can’t access the internet?

Perhaps I am more libertarian than I like to think myself to be.

Later I quoted Rep. John Sununu (R – New Hampshire) regarding the slippery slope of wishing for government interference:

If the Internet has taught us anything, it’s that it’s pretty presumptuous to predict what the future will be. We should be very, very cautious about imposing regulations based on what we think competitors will do in the future and how we think consumers will respond based on what we think competitors will do.

Gee, that sounds familiar.

Oh, yea. Attorney General Eric Holder, in a 60 minutes spot on healthcare and specifically Medicare and Medicaid’s extremely high levels of fraud made perhaps the most blind statement regarding human nature I’ve ever heard from a lawman:

People didn’t think that something as well-intentioned as Medicare and Medicaid would necessarily attract um… fraudsters.

People not thinking. Not considering the implications of what they want.

Just because it’s well intentioned doesn’t mean it’s right and good and free of the failings that so plague us mortals.

Are Verizon, AT&T, and Comcast completely good in their actions so far regarding the internet? No.

Comcast has been slapped once for purposely throttling connections to certain types of content during peak times load times.

But is the government the solution?

In my article regarding regulation versus innovation I make it clear that while there is a place for regulation, that regulation is best applied to the government itself, limiting it’s ability to tamper with our system of free enterprise.

There is a question I’d ask of anybody regarding this issue. If Thomas Edison were alive today which entity would be the greatest enemy of his innovation: Government or Business?

Sonia Ericson, writing in TechNewsWorld today provides a meaningful and realistic and proven alternative to network neutrality: private control.

ICANN is currently the organization closest to being “in control” of the internet.

It’s a private organization which controls the distribution and changes to the domain names which make the internet navigable.

(A)sking the FCC to “protect” the Internet means inviting government oversight, which injects more politics — not less — into the operation of the Net.

Sonia then talks about someone I’ve met:

Ashwin Navin, cofounder of BitTorrent, also says he doesn’t support government regulation of the Net, even though his name appears on an OIC letter. He says he’d rather see Internet service providers come up with a self-regulatory plan based on a pledge to keep the Net open and the creation of a third body to arbitrate. Indeed, Navin says that his own company’s scuffle with Comcast was ultimately solved without formal rules after a netizen noticed that Comcast was degrading service and brought the matter to the public’s attention.

“The problem is disclosure,” Navin says. “Consumers need to know if the ISP, which is the most invisible layer in the stack, is responsible for an improved or degraded experience for any of the services they use.”

Geek Out Alert!

In my days working for Fry’s Electronics, Ashwin’s step-dad hired us to build and repair his wireless network. He introduced me to Horchata and I watched the Blue Angels practice over his backyard. Ashwin and his brother came by once while I was there and I basked in the presence of those gods of the internet, the business minds behind BitTorrent.

But Ashwin has a point. A good point. A point I may elaborate on further in the future.

Suffice to say that information is the grease for the wheels of the free market and capitalism. And the internet, above all else in the history of markets, has enabled the dissemination of information more efficiently and the finding and gauging of information more easily.

Why do we trust the government to act in our best interest when it comes to such a powerful information force as the internet? The government has no competitors to blow the whistle on it’s misdeeds. The government self-interest lies in a dearth of information.

Trust the government and be taken for a fool. I’ll not be joining you in your foolishness.

Proofs Against Moral Relativism

Some things just fail on their own
Some things just fail on their own

The best counter to moral relativism is still the quip “is that so?” delivered with the appropriate raised eye-brow.

Any sufficient response to that query must consist of a positive statement of an absolute value which proves moral relativism to be a fraud at best.

While academics and other invested relativists insist that such verbal slaughter falls far short of fully discrediting their preferred viewpoint, they must first dismiss the truism that any philosophy that is internally inconsistent cannot be truth.

But just in case one needs more proof, consider the idea of FGM.

Female Genital Mutilation, or Female Circumcision, is a barbarous practice found exclusively among cultures whose religions require extreme subservience of their women.

The ugly process ensures women will derive no pleasure from sex with the supposed goal of guaranteeing the servitude of that woman to her man in all matters of sex and children.

The side effects are pain during intercourse, increased pain and damage during childbirth, and increased chance of infection.

There is no way this practice is moral. It produces no realistic, practical, or natural good for the woman, and who could argue successfully such enslavement of women is good for the men?

In America, we can fix this. We can remove the terrible effects of this mutilation. We can restore pleasurable sensations during sex and lessen the pain of childbirth.

That is a moral good.

Now, if some still want to argue that all cultures and individuals can find their own good which may or may not also be good for someone else, let them defend FGM. Let them defend the pain and the suffering. Let them say that action of mutilation is the same, morally, as the American action of restoration and healing.

Today’s Interesting Stuff: October 23rd, 2009

Burning KnightSexual Shamelessness

Andrew Klavan on PJTV has an excellent video skewering our culture’s libertine sexual shamelessness. Klavan tends to fall on the libertarian side of things, but I have to agree with the gist of his arguments here. After successfully lampooning Letterman and Polansky, showing them for the shameful cad and the predator they are, respectively, Klavan points out the real result of sexual shamelessness:

A world without sexual shame soon becomes a world not, unfortunately, of endless physical pleasure, but of unrestrained predators, victims without recourse, and children without hope or support.

But why read my description? See it for yourself (Caution: this does deal with mature topics and current events and uses some slight innuendo):

Why can’t we have more men in the media spotlight of the caliber of Paul Newman?

Why fool around with hamburger when you have steak at home?

Psychology and an increased understanding of human nature and design supports the fact that the best relationships, sexual or otherwise, always occur when there is the most trust. When there is not an expectation and trust in fidelity, in honest and open communication, in the primacy of this relationship before others in a natural and acceptable order of hierarchy, there cannot be true intimacy.

In other words: the more we know, the more we can trust what we’ve always known.

Experiencing wonderful intimacy inside my marriage with the wonderful and amazing Grace, I can only feel sorry for those who deceive themselves and cheat themselves out of the wonderful possibilities.

ACORNs Still Falling

ACORN claimed the reporting duo who brought the monstrous organization to it’s knees last month would never release the tape from their encounter in Philadelphia. The MSM carried their water, as usual.

And yet. And yet. And yet…

This video was not necessary for the slaying of the ACORN dragon. It was necessary for the further delegitimatizing of the MSM. ACORN is already discredited, defeated, and, short of some miraculous event, dead for all intents and purposes. But the MSM was caught with their pants down, their hands in the cookie jar, and with egg on their face in this video.

In Bill Whittle’s assessment of the original take down, he likened the assault on ACORN to a battle where the scrappy underdog takes out the monolithic giant using feints and parries to draw him into a vulnerable position, and then destroying him.

This latest video is yet another blow to an enemy already weakened and yet too full of it’s own self, too invested in it’s own lies, and too spiteful to recognize their own death knell.

See how the mighty have fallen.

In Other News

Mark Steyn points out that when Rush Limbaugh does not say something racist, he’s a racist and ought to be vilified and and run out of town on a rail, but when Anita Dunn, the President’s Media Czar, says something insane and dangerous to free people everywhere, it’s a non-story.

Rush Limbaugh’s remarks are “divisive”; Anita Dunn’s are entirely normal. But don’t worry, the new Fairness Doctrine will take care of the problem.

Read Limbaugh Bad, Mao Good.

Cal Thomas, in World Magazine writes:

The administration’s primary beef appears to be that Fox is doing the job the broadcast networks and big newspapers should be doing were they not still deeply in the tank for this president and his policies.

Read “Radio Free America”.

Neil Simpson, always a reasoned and reasonable man ready and willing to do verbal ambassadorship with those with illogical or incorrect views, is dealing with a fresh source of readers and their questions (let’s see if he picks up a hint from the choice of words above…):

The moral: Look to the reasons behind the beliefs.  If you have good reason to question the motives of the person in question, that is different.

Read this week’s Roundup.

Wintery Knight, spoiling for a good debate, points out the transcript of Hugh Hewitt’s (the best talk show host, period.) radio debate with Richard Dawkins. The good bits:

HH: Well, you repeatedly use the analogy of a detective at a crime scene throughout The Greatest Show On Earth. But detectives simply can’t dismiss evidence they don’t want to see. There’s a lot of evidence for the miracles, in terms of eyewitness…

RD: No, there isn’t. What there is, is written stories which were written decades after the alleged events were supposed to happen. No historian would take that seriously.

HH: Well, that’s why I’m conflicted, because in your book, you talk about the Latin teacher who is stymied at every turn, and yet Latin teachers routinely rely on things like Tacitus and Pliny, and histories that were written centuries after the events in which they are recording occur.

RD: There’s massive archaeological evidence, there’s massive evidence of all kinds. It’s just not comparable. No…if you talk to any ancient historian of the period, they will agree that it is not good historical evidence.

HH: Oh, that’s simply not true. Dr. Mark Roberts, double PhD and undergraduate at Harvard, has written a very persuasive book upon this. I mean, that’s an astounding statement. Are you unfamiliar with him?

RD: All right, then there may be some, but a very large number of ancient historians would say…

HH: Well, you just said there were none. So there are some that you are choosing not to confront.

RD: You sound like a lawyer.

HH: I am a lawyer.

Read Wintery Knights analysis.

If . . . Then . . .

If one does not choose to worship God while they are on Earth, how does one expect to be able to worship God when they reach Heaven?

Christianity is a choice. The choice to accept God’s gift. The evidence of that is a worship of God. If people purport to be Christian but choose not to worship God on Earth, then why do they think they would choose to worship God in Heaven? Worship will still be a choice . . . and the consequence of not worshiping will be no different.