Building an Economy that Works for Everyone

Nick Hanauer: Raise Taxes on Rich to Reward True Job Creators

Nick Hanauer

Nick Hanauer

Nick Hanauer – a wealthy Seattle entrepreneur, philanthropist and venture capitalist – recently authored a column in Bloomberg Business week titled “Raise Taxes on Rich to Reward True Job Creators.” His argument: simple supply and demand.

That’s why I can say with confidence that rich people don’t create jobs, nor do businesses, large or small. What does lead to more employment is the feedback loop between customers and businesses. And only consumers can set in motion a virtuous cycle that allows companies to survive and thrive and business owners to hire. An ordinary middle-class consumer is far more of a job creator than I ever have been or ever will be.

…There can never be enough superrich Americans to power a great economy. The annual earnings of people like me are hundreds, if not thousands, of times greater than those of the average American, but we don’t buy hundreds or thousands of times more stuff. My family owns three cars, not 3,000. I buy a few pairs of pants and a few shirts a year, just like most American men. Like everyone else, I go out to eat with friends and family only occasionally.

Using the tax code to reward wealthy individuals and corporations isn’t just bad policy, it’s killing jobs and holding back the economy. As EOI Policy Director Marilyn Watkins notes in A Jobs and Economic Recovery Plan for Washington, asking wealthy individuals, corporations, or out-of-state residents to pay their fair share could boost jobs by up to 17,000.

This isn’t rocket science. Washington state is giving public money away to wealthy airplane owners and Wall Street banks, while simultaneously cutting  K-12 teachers, higher education scholarships and health care services for vulnerable populations –  further depressing our state economy.

Go read the full column here.

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