Flap’s Links and Comments for April 20th on 05:58
These are my links for April 20th from 05:58 to 07:27:
- San Francisco Supervisors Pass ‘Twitter Tax Break’ – San Francisco lawmakers approved the mid-Market "Twitter tax break" on Tuesday in a near-empty board chamber, drawing an anticlimactic close to a debate that had polarized the city for two months. The legislation freezes payroll taxes along the mid-Market corridor for six years, a move supervisors hope will keep Twitter's headquarters in San Francisco.
The Board immediately moved onto the next, thorny question: What should San Francisco do with the rest of its startups that are threatening to leave because of the city’s payroll tax?
Supervisor Mark Farrell introduced legislation Tuesday that would amend the payroll tax code to no longer consider stock options as employee compensation. Since 2004, the city has defined options as payroll to be taxed at 1.5 percent. But only now, as a handful of high-profile tech companies like Twitter and Zynga prepare for their initial public offerings, has the tax emerged as a concern.
In recent weeks a handful of companies including Twitter, Zynga, and Yelp have pressed city officials to amend the tax, saying they would rather relocate than stay in San Francisco and absorb a huge tax hit in the event they go public and their shares soar in value.
If California wishes to retain business they will have to pass more such tax breaks and reduce regulation, plus streamline the process.
To deal with the less revenue, California will also have to cut government spending, including welfare, health and prison reform.
California better get busy.
- President 2012: Why Trump Shouldn’t Be Taken Seriously – But that's not the smell that bothers me. It's the stench of desperation coming up from those fickle souls taking a Trump presidential bid seriously.
How fickle? Well, not a day goes by when someone doesn't explain that Newt Gingrich can't win because he's damaged goods. And it's certainly true that the former speaker of the House has a lot of baggage – "enough to open a Louis Vuitton store," writes Ramesh Ponnuru in National Review. But surely "The Donald's" baggage would require an army of stevedores and sherpas.
And yet, the thrice-married lothario who says all women are gold diggers – at least when it comes to signing prenuptial agreements with him (and he may have a point there!) – is actually leading among Republican women, according to a CNN poll.
Forget Gingrich. Consider Mitt Romney. Nearly every conservative in Christendom not on Romney's payroll – and some who are – insists that his "Romneycare" law in Massachusetts is a political albatross given its similarities to Obamacare. Well, here's Trump in his book, The America We Deserve: "We must have universal healthcare. Our objective (should be) . . . to find an equivalent of the single-payer plan that is affordable, well-administered, and provides freedom of choice." Trump is flip-flopping now, as he is on his past support for Democrats, raising taxes, etc. And changes of heart are fine. But forgive me if I don't equate the word "Trump" with "sincere."
Indiana governor Mitch Daniels has been under fire for (foolishly) suggesting a "truce" on cultural issues with the Left. Social conservatives rightly saw this as a call for unilateral disarmament. But somehow gambling and wrestling impresario Trump would make a reliable champion of social issues?
Read it all
But, Trump is serving a useful purpose as a non-serious surrogate who is attacking President Obama every day in a pop culture way.
Trump will certainly drop by the wayside soon but the damage to Obama will be done.
The GOP and America can thanks The Donald for that.
- California Dreamin’ About Texas Jobs – A group of California legislators recently made headlines when they traveled to Texas to learn why the Lone Star State has lately been generating the kind of job growth that the Golden State was once known for, and even luring many companies that once made California their home.
But every politician in California of either party ought to know that the answer to the state's economic woes lies not in Texas, but in California. Job migration is a very sexy issue, and one blogger, relocation expert Joseph Vranich, is even keeping an online list of firms that have exited California. But migration makes up only a small part of the job gains or losses a state experiences. By contrast, job creation through expansion of businesses and the formation of new companies is far more responsible for job growth. California once knew how to create new jobs and new companies, and a few places in the state still do it fairly well. The answers to California's woes lie in those places, not in Texas.
Over the last 15 years, California ranks as the third worst state in the country in terms of job migration, with a net outflow of jobs that is 1 percent greater than the flow of jobs into the state, according to the National Establishment Time Series database. Texas, by contrast, is 10th best in the nation in that period, with a plus 1.3 percent inflow of jobs from other states. Based on Vranich's anecdotal list, Texas is the biggest beneficiary of jobs leaving California.
Sad but true.
I know many young Californians that have either left or planning to leave the Golden State because the jobs are few and the expenses are great.
California needs to right its budget, re-evaluate business regulations, reform its welfare systems and improve its educational system quickly or the export of jobs and people will continue.
- In Social Media Battle, Republicans Catch Up in Time for 2012 – “The notion that the Internet was owned by liberals, owned by the left in the wake of the Obama victory, has been proven false,” said Patrick Ruffini, a Republican political online strategist who is now advising the exploratory campaign of Tim Pawlenty, the former governor of Minnesota, after working as a digital adviser to President George W. Bush’s campaign in 2004 and later to the Republican National Committee.
During last year’s midterm elections, Republicans caught up with Democrats in using technology and social networks, and now many Republicans elected to the House and Senate are using these tools more than Democrats, according to several political and technology experts.
“This will be the first election in modern history that both parties are understanding the potential of the technology to change the results of the election,” said Andrew Rasiej, a co-founder of TechPresident.com, a blog that covers politics and technology, and a digital adviser to Democrats since Howard Dean’s presidential campaign in 2004. “Both Republicans and Democrats are ready to use online platforms and are no longer skeptical of its potential.”
And, in many ways, the RIGHT has leaped ahead of the Democrats, especially with Twitter.