Another attractive result of the recent elections is the addition of several new potential national leaders in the various state governments, particularly in the office of Governor, and the validation of policies that are worthy of emulation. (And here, of course, I withhold judgment on California, which is so dysfunctional that even the best policy prescriptions don’t stand a chance!) Of course, the leading model is Texas, which leads the nation for the sixth year in a row in polls of CEOs as nurturing the best business climate, and all of the top ten in the ranking are, to no surprise, the so-called “red” states. Why is this so important? Because the best ideas come from what works in these “laboratories” and because the leaders who embrace these ideas have a big role in shaping public opinion on policy, not to mention electoral outcomes. And, as people and business leaders “vote with their feet” to migrate to states in which capital is well treated, the leaders in the losing states get the message or lose their jobs. This is the type of incentive we need to apply to the national economic growth problem. And with congressional redistricting looming, the states with large out-migration will lose political power on a national basis, putting even more pressure on their leaders to change course. Eventually this might even work in California!
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