Kleptocrat’s Club – the NH Business Finance Authority
by Bill Walker: Stopping
the Next Hitler
an endangered species. Once the only form of government, it is now
gone except in a few countries where it is kept alive for sentimental
reasons with US mercenaries and drones (e.g. Kuwait and Saudi Arabia).
Republican government is also extinct for all practical purposes,
being confined to Switzerland’s cantons and a few micronations.
The most common form of government today is the Kleptocracy – rule
by those who control the means of currency creation.
The US is a
Kleptocracy, and has been since before World War One. Who cares
who their Congressman is, or which party controls the Presidency?
Most people can’t even name their Federal Senators or representative,
let alone the state-level officeholders. But everyone knows Ben
Bernanke’s name, because he’s the guy who MCs the most popular game
show: Who Gets to be a Billionaire?
Once the US
was a place where people became wealthy by producing a new and better
product or service. Vanderbilt, Carnegie, Henry Ford, all created
new wealth and made others better off in the process. Even after
the Kleptocracy was founded, some entrepreneurs managed to continue
the tradition of "insanely great products": Wozniak, Jobs,
Bezos, and the other computer whiz kids.
In the 21st
century, starting a business in the United States is a loser’s game.
First a corporation must risk its capital with no guarantee against
loss. If the business survives and manages to create something more
valuable than the resources it consumed to make it, then most of
the gains are taken by government. A corporation pays 35% in Federal
tax, then pays state income tax. Then the investors pay 15% income
taxes on their dividends, and capital gains taxes on the nominal
"increase" in value of their shares… not adjusted for
inflation. And if the investors actually try to USE "their"
money inside the US, they are then taxed again with sales, property,
and/or excise taxes. Correcting for the possibility of investment
losses, the investor gets far less than half of the value that she
created with her investment.
The Obama Administration
is trying to increase the double taxation by taxing dividends at
the full (39%) rate of ordinary income. (By comparison, "communist"
China only taxes corporate income at 25% and dividends at 10%).
This of course, is only for those losers like you and I, those not
a member of the Kleptocrat’s Club.
of the Club, life is a continuous success story. It doesn’t matter
whether your products are terrible (GM) or even imaginary (Goldman
Sachs). All that matters is the continuing flow of freshly printed
money into your business. It’s like being a medieval noble; you
can do no wrong. The courts will always find in your favor, you
are never subject to the humiliations of peasants (airport security,
police raids, etc.) All that you need is a little modification of
language: "counterfeiting" becomes "quantitative
easing", "theft" becomes "stimulus", and
so on. After enough repetition, the peasants will believe that your
wealth causes the Sun to rise in the morning, and that they must
thank you for allowing them to pay for your palaces and the subsidies
for your unprofitable businesses.
So the goal
of modern social climbers is to become part of the Club. If you
can’t arrange to be born into the families that control access to
the national Club, you can still have a consolation prize: you can
start a state-level business subsidy office. There are hundreds
of these humble little state-level kleptocrat clubs around the US.
Some are called "economic development zones", some are
called by various department names. Today we’ll take a quick look
at the New Hampshire Business Finance Authority.
in the "Live Free or Die" State
The NH BFA
has the distinction of being more secret than the NSA. There isn’t
even a Wikipedia article on the Business Finance Authority. Nor
are any of its financial statements online. I had to make a 91-A
request to obtain its annual reports to the governor. As the state
refuses to put the annual reports online, the NH
Liberty Alliance will soon have them on its website, in our
continuing struggle for transparency.
So there won’t
be any links in this article. If you want to check my figures, just
email the director, good old Jack Donovan [email protected].
If that doesn’t work, go over and pound on the door at 2 Pillsbury
Street Suite 201 Concord, NH 03301. (603) 415-0190. The staff loves
to hear from the ordinary people that pay their salaries.
the first page of the 2011 Annual Report, the BFA has transferred
over 1.4 billion dollars from we lazy, undeserving taxpayers (and
all holders of dollar balances) to those who truly earned the money
(by filling out BFA forms). The BFA states that it has "helped"
4,375 businesses since 1992. I’m sure that is true. Unfortunately,
the report fails to mention that the BFA HARMED all the other businesses
and workers in the state, by granting and/or diverting money to
the politically favored.
12 million dollars, in 2011. Anheuser-Busch is actually owned by
InBev, a Belgian-Brazilian beer conglomerate which bought the Clydesdales
for $52 billion in 2008. Obviously, this is a company which needs
to be subsidized by NH state government. Otherwise Granite Staters
might have to drink Sam Adams or some local microbrew that actually
tastes like something.
Swiss biotech company, $35 million in 2011, $25 million in 2006,
$30 million in 2003.
the garbage giant: $20 million in 2001, 20 in 2002, 15 more in 2004.
Sig Arms, makers
of fine pistols (except for early model P238s), got $1.75 million
But the BFA
doesn’t just help big business. It also helps upper-crust schools
and government media outlets.
a private school that charges over $46,000 per year per student,
got over a million in 2001. This is a critically important use for
money that might otherwise be wasted on less important children
in the other private schools around the state, most of whom charge
less than 12K per year.
Soccer got 3.7 million.
Radio got $6 million dollars in 2008 to help fund its mission to
elect more Democrats in New Hampshire.
of Democrats, the BFA bought some Pennsylvania company a nice NH
newspaper, the Claremont Eagle Times. It was reported
at the time as costing only $187,000, but the annual report
(which, remember, is not online) shows it as 250K. The town of Claremont
voted for Ron Paul in the NH primary, but you’d be hard pressed
to find any signs of Ron Paul supporters in the Eagle Times.
Robin Hoods Gone Wild
has become a euphemism for robbery, as are the words "bond"
and "loan guarantee". The Business Finance Authority doesn’t
show up as a line item on the NH state budget. It does give out
some direct freebies, like weatherization grants. But mostly it
works in the shadows, by "guaranteeing" bonds, and/or
granting the right to certain corporations to issue tax-exempt bonds.
Being tax-exempt "lowers the cost of financing", the BFA
helpfully explains in its reports (apparently the wealthy recipients
would not be clear on this otherwise). Overall, so far the BFA gave
out $399 million in loan guarantees, and $1.008 billion dollars
in tax-exempt or other subsidized bonds.
The BFA has
long lists of "impacts"; numbers of jobs created, number
of jobs preserved, how many "Local Development Organization
Loan Pools" they funded. Mr. Donovan, the director, was very
concerned that I might ask him for the figures on the "loan
loss rate". He needn’t have worried. The "loss rate"
on any government program to steal from one business to give to
another is always 100%. Once business becomes robbery, everything
is lost: honor, trust, your soul, etc.
has fewer business subsidies than most states. There are hundreds
of euphemistically named subsidy organizations, large and small,
around the US. Taken together, they have taken "business"
more than halfway from being the engine of human life to just another
Am I saying
that businesses shouldn’t take subsidy money? No. Once your opponent
picks up a knife, the game of chess is over and you have to play
by knife-fight rules too. I’m saying that all our political efforts
have to go into exposing, then eliminating all subsidy programs
and prosecuting their perpetrators. Supporting business subsidies
as policy doesn’t make you a "good Republican"; it makes
you a thief.
Walker [send him mail]
lives and works in New Hampshire, where he is active in the New
Hampshire Liberty Alliance. Visit his Facebook
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