New York Spends $28 Million to Advertise a Tax Cut That Maybe Created 76 Jobs

Even when government says 'tax-free,' you should reach for your wallet


Hey, it's Tax Day, so what kind of curmudgeon could be against a tax cut? The kind easily irritated by taxpayer-financed propaganda:

The Start-Up NY campaign has spent $28 million in advertising so far, writes the great New York Post columnist and movie reviewer Kyle Smith, while being credited for the creation of 76 jobs. "That's $368,000 per job," Smith notes. More:

The problem is that it's a very, very narrow tax cut. It's only for certain kinds of businesses that do certain kinds of things in certain areas of the state. Surprise: It's had very narrow effects.

It's a classic example of how politicians have an irrepressible urge to tinker, to steer, to organize. Tech jobs in university towns are great, but they aren't defining the New York economy. Start-Up NY's professed goal? Creating 2,100 jobs. Over five years. […]

So very tired. |||

In a state in which there are 7,775,000 jobs, that's projected job growth of 0.005% a year. Touting this as "economic development" is like saying you're going to fight hunger in India by sending Mumbai one box of Minute Rice.

What's really going on with sluggish job growth? It isn't a mystery. According to the annual survey by, New York is the worst state for taxes. […]

A different survey, completed in 2013 by the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, ranked states by personal and economic freedom. New York was 50th on that list, too.

Smith also points out that Gov. Cuomo has locked down the Yoko Ono vote by irrationally banning fracking in his state, despite its prime location above the bountiful Marcellus Shale.

On this Tax day, it's worth remembering that when a politician uses the word "investment," what he often means in practice is grabbing money from you and spending it very badly in the name of a goal that would be better served by doing neither.

NEXT: Another Bout of Anti-Libertarian Nonsense from the Left-Wing Center for American Progress

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  1. It’s interesting how much perception has displaced reality, all while reality continues to have consequences.

  2. If you know of a better way to socially engineer people while buying their votes with their own money, I’d like to hear it.

  3. OT: Is there any way to get the desktop version by default? I went to the page to manage my account, and there’s no option for that. No matter why I try, I get sent to the mobile version.

    1. Don’t know what you are using, but most mobile browsers have an option along the lines of “always request desktop site”. Check your browser settings.

    2. what mobile browser do you use?

      If it is one that lets you configure your user agent then you can force it to give you the desktop version because it will think you are using a desktop browser.

      On Android there is a Browser called Dolphin that lets you change your user agent, and I think Opera does as well. On apple devices I’m not sure if there are any that let you set your user agent

  4. OT: Matt Welch just posted this on his twitter…

    But really, canceling the movie is perfectly consistent with freedom of expression, and showing the movie is what contradicts freedom of expression. As we will see, doing so silences Arab voices, so it conflicts with the purpose of promoting free speech on campuses ? to foster students’ intellectual growth through exposing them to many different perspectives.

    1. Lefties have ridden the zero-sum fallacy so far they are applying it in places where it makes no motherfucking sense whatsoever.

    2. That kids parents must look at the $150,000 they’ve invested in his Brown education and want to eat a shotgun.

      1. But if they ate the shotgun they’d be denying use of that shotgun to Muslim parents who want to commit suicide due to the horrible stupidity of their own progeny, so really committing suicide is racist if you think about it long enough.


        “Just as it would be disconcerting to find copies of “Mein Kampf” strewn amongst the National Geographic magazines in a dentist’s office, so it is strange to find a controversial war movie playing at a casual party.”

        American Sniper is like Mein Kampf! Shelden Richman’s a pussy since all he did was compare Chris Kyle to Adam Lanza. This guy compared him to Hitler.

        1. You know who else…oh, never mind.

          1. Sean Hannity?

  5. Living in NJ I see those ads constantly. They are hilarious “move here and enjoy some temporary tax breaks and fuck over your employees” – instead of moving to somewhere in the South where the low taxes are permanent.

  6. Was it Bill Clinton who first called government spending “investment” ? I seem to recall he was the first, because I recall myself thinking, wow, the slimy bastard is good at slinging the bullshit.

  7. Yesterday I was listening to a economic themed pod-cast discussing solutions to current no growth/slow growth. The dude being interviewed (an academic economist) lamented public/private debt levels and the the credit super cycle we find ourselves in then suggested the solution was for government to borrow more money (at near 0%) and “invest” in super awesome stuff.

    Super awesome stuff (SAS). Who will determine what is SAS? How will we hold government accountable for spending on SAS? Terrific. How naive or willfully stupid are people, especially academics?

    Economics in modern times = magic beans. Possibly, we should just do a human sacrifice to the gods of money and hope for the best. Where’s the Red Woman or the Drowned God when we need them?

    1. If we make the requirement for sacrifice to be a proggy economist and politican, it might have long-term net positive effects.

    2. Where’s the Red Woman or the Drowned God when we need them?

      Where is your God now, indeed?!

      1. Where is your God now, indeed?!

        Right here

    3. “borrow more money (at near 0%) and “invest” in super awesome stuff”

      That’s not a bad fiscal policy. I also suggest that we, collectively, as a society, buy low and sell high. By selling awesome things for much more than the low, low pricez at which we bought them, America will profit. That way, every American kid, and all immigrants, and all illegals, i mean undocumented foreign-born workers, can attend top tier colleges free. no child will be left behind and, in one bold stroke, we solve the whole “student loan debt epidemic crisis” or whatev

      like, totally aw!

    1. California cries…

      1. A crying Statue of Liberty holds a dead child while a crying sun shines over her shoulder, creating a reflection of a crying Gabby Giffords in the water, and birds are circling Statue of Liberty and are crying, while “When Doves Cry” plays over the PA system….


  8. You’ve got that wrong, the $28 Million wasn’t to advertize the failed program, it was to get Cuomo’s name and ugly mug in the media. He’s a malignant Narcissist, and nothing else matters.

    1. It’s a racket. These local tv networks won’t badmouth Cuomo as long as he keeps brining in the ad money.

    2. So a normal politician?

  9. “That’s $368,000 per job,” Smith notes.
    Rebuilding the middle class!

  10. But really, canceling the movie is perfectly consistent with freedom of expression, and showing the movie is what contradicts freedom of expression.

  11. That kid from Brown has the Doublethink down to a fucking science. A great future in the ministry of truth awaits.

  12. 368K per job? Still better than Obama’s stimulus.


    If you thought you’d seen gerrymandering before, ….

  14. Start-up NY: AKA taxpayer funded re-election campaign ads.

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