A recent paper from the Federal Reserve shows that we can expect states with high corporate tax rates to perform poorly on entrepreneurship. Minnesota has high corporate tax rates and poor performance on entrepreneurship. Sadly, our state is just another data point in support of their findings.
Minnesota’s unfunded public pension obligations are not a new problem. But reform is difficult when government unions turn a blind eye to shortchanged pension funds and oppose necessary steps to fix the broken system. Several of the state’s public sector unions—including Education Minnesota, SEIU, and AFSCME Council 5—retweeted a cartoon about pensions with a perilous message about the state of defined benefit plans. The unions are scaring their members into thinking pensions will disappear because of the Supreme Court’s recent ruling on Janus v. AFSCME, conveniently excluding the fact that Minnesota has had pension liabilities each year for almost a decade and failing to acknowledge the role unions play in the shortfalls. (Unions lobby actively on pension policy.)
Minnesota beer retailers are taxed $0.15 per gallon and then an alcohol-specific sales tax of 9 percent.
Citypages writer Pete Kotz recently wrote an article claiming renewable energy is a free market success story, and that jobs in the renewable energy industry are "blowing up" despite "sabotage" from none other than Center of the American Experiment. If a few inconvenient truths about wind and solar energy and a handful of billboards can garner such angst from Citypages, I feel like we're doing something right.
Arvonne Fraser, who died recently at 92, contributed several essays over the years to American Experiment symposia that I compiled on a variety of subjects. She also was one of my 40 interviewees in a 2014 book, Broken Bonds: What Family Fragmentation Means for America’s Future. One might ask how a liberal “trailblazer” wound up in Center publications. Easy, I invited her. I don’t know when we first met other than to say it was a long time ago. The same is true of her husband, Don, the former congressman and mayor of Minneapolis, who survives her. Obviously, Arvonne and...
For most, the St. Croix is a scenic river. For others, it is an Iron Curtain or 38th Parallel, separating different economic systems. This is the position taken by the Economic Policy Institute in a new report comparing the economic records of Minnesota and Wisconsin Governors Mark Dayton and Scott Walker since they took office in January 2011. But once you start to examine the data for yourself, the EPI’s case looks much less clear cut.
In 1970, Minnesota was among the states with the least income inequality. Black household median income was competitive with white households, and Hispanic incomes were nearly identical to white households. Since then, the racial wage gap has increased significantly despite remaining mostly unchanged in the rest of the country. Why are black and Hispanic families so much worse off in Minnesota? The answer is likely the result of several variables. Immigration patterns, language barriers, and skill deficiencies may all contribute to Minnesota’s growing income gap. One important factor, however, is the education system.