There is an interesting debate brewing over a plan by Governor Doyle to offer tax breaks for business start-ups and research and development. According to an article in yesterday's Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Republicans "tripped over themselves praising Doyle's proposals" while some Democrats had their doubts. Democratic Senator Bob Jouch said that "Wisconsin already handed out too many tax breaks to 'specific groups or well-connected individuals.'"
Doyle spokesman Matt Canter defended the plan. "For Wisconsin to be a forward looking state, we have to incentivize the kind of economy we want."
Well herein lies the problem. When government incentivizes the economy it wants, it disencentives the economy that free individuals would otherwise create. When government favors one type of economic activity, it harms all other types of economic activity that are put in a disadvantaged position.
When government incentivizes the kind of economy it wants, it is taking one more step towards controlling the economy and controlling you.