The Corporate Welfare Mentality

Team 4 Pittsburgh has a well-done, but disturbing, story and video on why government bureaucrats hand out “economic development” grants to companies.

Usually, government officials claim that taxpayer “investments” will “creat jobs”. But that is quickly debunked:

Jim Parsons: But in a recent interview, Wittlin, a Pittsburgh native, said he’d make films here even without financial incentives.

Mike Wittlin: “Guys like myself and Mike Dolan, we’ll keep making movies here probably regardless.”

Responding to a question about why many taxpayer-funded “loans” are never paid back, Allegheny County Redevelopment Authority head Dennis Davlin answers that it is the government’s role to give money to businesses plans doomed to fail.

Davin says the redevelopment authority has a responsibility to take risks that no private lender would. …

Jim Parsons: “If a company goes to a bank to try to get a loan and the bank says uh-uh, why would you do it?

Dennis Davin: “I think for us, it’s a simple answer. That’s part of our role. And our obligation.”

We all know that government officials tend to be loose with “investments”, because they are spending other people’s money, but rarely will they come out and say that they don’t really care whether the project they give our money to is viable.

Thankfully, there are a few quotes from Matt Brouillette to break up this insanity, noting how “economic development” spending doesn’t grow the economy, how projects are chosen on political merit rather than economic merit, and the redistributing funds from successful business to failing models hurt is a perverse incentive.