CARRIER DEAL: Trump Won… But Who Else Did?

Written by Michael Cummings on December 4, 2016

Care for a truth? I hope so, since you’re at ClashDaily. We are truth purveyors here, even if we don’t like the truth.

We’ve covered the topic of business and taxation in the past but since Trump’s Carrier victory, it bears repeating.

Did you know companies are not in business to employ people? Did you know companies are not in business to provide healthcare, 401(k)s, snacks, ping pong, or company outings during holidays? Did you know a company’s primary purpose is to make a profit? The truth is if a CEO could do everything on his own to make the profit he wants, he wouldn’t hire anyone. He can’t, so he does.

With that fact in mind, turn to the good news, which is the air conditioner manufacturer Carrier will keep over a thousand jobs in the United States. This was a good political victory for Trump. During his campaign he said he was going to get Carrier to keep manufacturing jobs here instead of allocating them to Mexico. Trump said what he was going to do, and he did it. It should be noted, however, that during the campaign Trump said Carrier would stay more because he simply wouldn’t let them leave, and offered little in the way of details about incentives.

This is a decent victory. Nice job, Mr. President-Elect.

In a free market, however, this shouldn’t ever happen. The truth is this is the definition of crony-capitalism: Pick a company, offer specific incentives, win in politics. This time, it’s Carrier. Tomorrow, it’s another company in another state that needs the tax income.

Do you suppose there are other Indiana manufacturers – or any Indiana company for that matter — asking, “Where’s mine?” This and every other business deal involving a for-profit company and government is wrong on its face. From national sports teams to software developers, call centers to financial services companies, to manufacturers large and small — whenever a local, state, or government entity singles out a company to favor them with tax relief, the arbitrary nature of picking winners means everyone else loses.

The Carrier deal included, as Rush Limbaugh explained Thursday, “tax relief”. In our much needed effort to take language back from the Left, we’re apparently not supposed to say “tax breaks” Do I think every company in America deserves tax relief? Hell, yes. Let’s add regulation relief to that, too. But if you can’t offer all businesses, large or small, the same tax structure, no one should be singled out for favors. It’s impossible to do that, right?

Actually, no. At the federal level, you simplify the corporate tax code (flat tax, across the board), wipe out the majority of the regulations we all know are pointless and fascistic, and let business do what they know how to do. There are an infinite number of levers to pull to make economies work (please read I, Pencil). Anyone who says they can do so from a single office or bureaucracy is a crack user and dealer.

Take heart, my friends. Despite our top rank in corporate taxation, in manufacturing we are actually
NUMBER ONE. The question isn’t should we keep manufacturing jobs in this country. The question is what can we do to get government out of the way for business leaders to determine how best to operate their companies.

They know their business. Let them be.

photo credit: Gage Skidmore Donald Trump via photopin (license)

Share if you think there might be some troubling aspects of this Carrier deal.

Michael Cummings
Michael A. Cummings has a Bachelors in Business Management from St. John's University in Collegeville, MN, and a Masters in Rhetoric & Composition from Northern Arizona University. He has worked as a department store Loss Prevention Officer, bank auditor, textbook store manager, Chinese food delivery man, and technology salesman. Cummings wrote position pieces for the 2010 Trevor Drown for US Senate (AR) and 2012 Joe Coors for Congress (CO) campaigns.