Forsaking Massachusetts’s Miracle: Risking Our Future With Past Mistakes

Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter
Share on
LinkedIn
+

This week on Hubwonk, host Joe Selvaggi talks with Greg Sullivan, Research Director at Pioneer Institute and author of Back to Taxachusetts?, about the link between Massachusetts’s decision to reduce tax rates and a generation-long economic renaissance – and the reasons why new taxes such as the proposed, so-called “Fair Share Amendment” risk taking us back to economic stagnation or decline.

BOOK LAUNCH: Mark your calendar for Wednesday, May 25 from 6:00 to 8:00 PM and sign up now to secure your spot for Pioneer Institute’s live launch of our newest book, “Back to Taxachusetts?” at the UMass Club on One Beacon Street in Boston!

Guest

Gregory Sullivan is Pioneer’s Research Director. Prior to joining Pioneer, Sullivan served two five-year terms as Inspector General of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and was a 17-year member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives. Greg is a Certified Fraud Investigator, and holds degrees from Harvard College, The Kennedy School of Public Administration, and the Sloan School at MIT.

Get new episodes of Hubwonk in your inbox!

Please excuse typos.

Joe Selvaggi:

This is Hubwonk. I’m Joe Selvaggi.

Joe Selvaggi:

Welcome to Hubwonk, a podcast of Pioneer Institute, a think tank in Boston. Massachusetts has enjoyed a generation-long economic Renaissance driven by its cultivation of new technologies, such as biotech, as well as it’s attracting older firms to relocate such as general electric. This success is owed in no small part from its decision to issue its former high tax policies that had earned it than nickname of taxachusetts and embark on a glide toward a lower income tax rate to one near middle of the nationwide pack. Despite the clear demonstrated success of the state’s more moderate tax policy. This November Massachusetts voters will be asked to amend its constitution to instantiate an 80% income tax increase for its highest earners. This euphemistically labeled fair share amendment attacks on any income over $1 million comes at a remarkable time when the state coffers are bulging from billions in budget, surplus revenue and from generous federal stimulus and aid for infrastructure while it’s backers assure voters that the money will be well spent.

Joe Selvaggi:

Fair share advocates must address voters. Reasonable concerns that returning to past high tax policies will not also return the Massachusetts economy back to economic stagnation and malaise. Indeed. What lessons should voters take from the success of our past and what can we learn from other states that chose to raise taxes on high earners in the past and are now dealing with the consequences? My guest today is Greg Sullivan, Research Director at Pioneer Institute and author of the book “Back to Massachusetts?”, Which is set to release this week. Mr. Sullivan will share with us the themes of his book based on careful research and analysis of the decades, long success of the Massachusetts economy and contrast our outcomes with those of other states, such as Connecticut and California, that levied higher rates on their state’s highest earns. We will discuss who will likely be affected by a so-called millionaires tax and why such taxes can be so destructive to the long term health of a state’s economy. He will also speak to his concern that contrary to the assurance of the amendment supporters. The new revenue may be spent merely to increase the size, but not the quality of our state’s government. When I return, I’ll be joined by senior fellow and author Greg Sullivan.

Joe Selvaggi:

Okay. We’re back. This is Hubwonk I’m Joe Selvaggi. I’m now pleased to be joined by Pioneer Institute’s Research Director co-author of the soon to be released book “Back To Taxachusetts” by Greg Sullivan. Welcome back to Hubwonk, Greg.

Greg Sullivan:

Thanks, Joe.

Joe Selvaggi:

Okay. I just finished reading an early copy of your new book. I, I found it wonderfully informative, interesting a chock full of data that even though I do many topics on these same issues I learned a great deal from the book. So but before we get into the book, let’s, let’s take a, a wider view and say, who did you know, you sat down and wrote this book, who is your target audience? Who, who do you expect to pick up this book and learn something?

Greg Sullivan:

Number one, we’re hoping to get the word out to the general public and the voting public indirectly by putting out facts and figures re solid statistical analysis out there, part of the dialogue. And that’s the right now a lot of the work we did was in an effort to get information to the legislature as well, but now the legislature put it on the ballot for November. So that ship has sailed. So this is all about the general public.

Joe Selvaggi:

So we’re, we’re trying to reach let’s say the general public, but I know from my own emails, I get plenty of emails that say, you know, from people who clearly think all taxes are bad. I understand there are arguments and there’s certainly folks out there who think, you know, all taxes are good, they all make for a better society. So it seems to me from reading the book that you’re trying to aim for the persuadable middle, if, if there is still such a thing much the same way we try to do here at hub won. So let’s stop start at the beginning. I moved to Massachusetts, I way back in 1993, and back then we were known as and so here we are much later and we’re no longer known that way. So let’s get a little bit of history. Why were we known as in the past?

Greg Sullivan:

The, the term was no joke. Massachusetts was ranked as the third highest taxing state in the country in 1970. And that’s by the tax foundation, the combination of income taxes and local property taxes. And that began to change in 1980 when proposition two and a half passed. That was the initiative petition that put limits on the amount of local property taxes. And the legislature also followed up by reducing the income tax rate from at 1.5 0.6% down to 5%. Those two things really made Massachusetts kind of reformed tax tax really and has ended. I mean, I think the, that the voters of Massachusetts and the state legislature made a decision that taxation levels at a very high hurting the economy and they’ve addressed it right now. We’re in the middle of the, that we’re like rank 24th out of 50 states in terms of our combined state local property taxes. That’s a big difference from being among the very, very highest to the middle of the road. And that’s a, it’s an economic advantage to us to be reasonable tax state.

Joe Selvaggi:

Well, being in the middle, I suppose, you know, is, is a good place on this index. So we’re neither bad nor good we’re somewhere in the middle. So folks we’re all right. So from bad to to average, I’m, I’m happy with that now. As those of us who advocate generally for lower taxes or more business friendly environments, we say that lowering taxes does have the effect of encouraging more growth and therefore ultimately more taxes. But what has been the effect since becoming going from the worst to the middle of the pack over the last 30 or 40 years have, have we indeed have those promises been kept, has the Massachusetts economy boomed in that time?

Greg Sullivan:

Yes. the best, the best way to look at it. This this issue was to look at compar Connecticut and Massachusetts. Everybody knows that Massachusetts basically pirated away GE one of the nation’s premier companies from Connecticut moved to Massachusetts right after Massa, right after Connecticut boomed their taxes for on, in, on individuals and affecting companies as well. So Massachusetts has, has done very, very well comparison to of the new England states because of our economic competitiveness. The problem is that we’re in a very, very competitive environment among the states looking for companies to locate here and to stay here, very fierce competition. And we’re kind of up against it in new England for a number of reasons.

Joe Selvaggi:

So, so I wanna get into, I wanna take apart all of those issues. So you, you say we’re doing well, we’re doing particularly well compared to our neighbor in Connecticut. So I wanna unpack a lot of the themes in the book here, but let’s start at the beginning. I think if I, the common thread through the whole book, this fear of becoming tax excuse again, is largely predicated on this new ballot measure. That’s coming down for our, for voters in 20, 22nd of November which give it, call it what you will some call it the fair share tax, some call it prop 80 or the millionaires tax. But for our listeners who aren’t studying this all the time, what, what is it that they will be asked to vote on? What is this fair share amendment that, that they’ll be asked to vote on in November?

Greg Sullivan:

Well, the fair share amendment that’s gonna the ballot November would add a 80% increase to the top marginal tax rate for, for income over a million dollars. And that, so this would change Massachusetts from being basically in the middle of the pack in the country with a pretty decent advantageous tax rate to being among the very highest of the country. And and that’s the propo, the proposal, if it’s adopted, would apply to income over $1 million, but the way that they wrote the proposal, it applies to all income. In other words, it applies to income from capital gains. It comes from selling you house stocks, bonds affects people when they retire, if for somebody who sells their business that that’s their retirement, their nest egg they’re one time millionaires. That’s one of the problems with it is that it’s gonna apply kind of indiscriminately, not to what most people consider to be millionaires, but people who happen to earn a million dollars when they retired and sold their business. So that’s the problem with this bill.

Joe Selvaggi:

Indeed, your book takes apart who are these quote unquote millionaires, but let’s, let’s back up even further and say, who would back such a measure? You know, why, who, who thinks such a thing is a good idea?

Greg Sullivan:

Well, the proponents of the measure are mostly made up of state employees and, and public employees through their unions. And that should, that should really tell you something about it, because one of the things we pointed out here is when this same kind of proposal passed in, in California as you, as you pointed out in previous hub, long shows, which excellent what happened was the the economy really started to decline and in, in, but the money that they received, which was promised to be going to education K through 12 and community colleges, they didn’t do it. They, they never raised the amount of money above the minimum constitutional level in California and in California public payrolls increased by more than a hundred percent more than the average of the country. So it can be, it’s, there’s an element of this is becomes a, a, a huge cash trough that the legislature can spend it, whatever it wants,

Joe Selvaggi:

I think, yes, indeed. You pointed to earlier shows I just wanna make sure we address the, our listeners who maybe haven’t listened to all earlier shows about this. So effectively it, it levies a tax, a 80% increase on the higher, highest marginal rate for earners. And I believe, again, some of the controversy is where will that money go? I think it’s advocates promise. It will go to education or transportation, things that people really like. But your research and your book point out that similar promises by other states, specifically, California, where they said all this new money will go to transportation and education. And as your book points out, not a single penny, more than the minimum went to education, nothing changed before and after. They got slightly more revenue because the stake got more revenue, but as a, as a percentage of, of the budget, it’s remained the same.

Joe Selvaggi:

Let me ask a little side question. We see a lot of headlines now to the surprise of many, I guess, perhaps all people regardless of where they stand, we’re experiencing here in Massachusetts revenue surpluses in the billions of dollars. Now we had all thought that COVID would mean business or revenue tax revenue would decrease where I saw one week a one month surplus of $2 billion in just a single month. Why would advocates a suggest a massive tax increase while we don’t know what to do with the money we’re already taking in?

Greg Sullivan:

Well, I mean, Massachusetts during COVID the forecast for the economic recovery were very conservative as everyone was really, really worried going back to the beginning of like March 20, 20. But if you look at what happened with COVID even a year afterwards, Massachusetts this still in the height of the, of the COVID pandemic, Massachusetts income from sales tax and from income tax was actually larger than any point in history. In words, the economy, the, the, the COVID economic downturn was very concentrated in certain industries, tourism related and travel related restaurants, bars. These are the part of the economy that get murdered, but in Massachusetts, we recovered very quickly. And right now we’re a wash with money. There’s so much money available to the legislature that they basically stopped appropriating it, and just said, time out, we have to, we, we just can’t spend all this money. Now we have to put it aside. We’ll decide what to do with it later. So Massachusetts is a wash and, and, and money. So you say, well, why are you gonna put on one of the biggest tax increases in the history of the United States, right in the middle of this? And it’s, it’s worrisome.

Joe Selvaggi:

Yeah. It seems a, a, a sort of a, sort of be a naked advocacy for just taxes in general, whether it’s needed or not let you know taxes are inherently good. It, it just seems odd or UN perplexed. Now your book I think very well admits that none of us has a crystal ball. We are you and I advocating, and your book advocates against this prop 80 or millionaires tax, but none of us has a crystal ball. We don’t know what kind of effect it will have, but you do try to imply or ask your readers to infer from the experiences of other states. We’ve touched briefly here. You mentioned Connecticut and California. I’d like to go a little deeper into that. Let’s start with Connecticut. What happened when Connecticut raised its top income rate? Again, they’ve done it several times, so it doesn’t have to be one rate increase, maybe over the course of a decade, several, I think four increases. What’s been the effect on the con Connecticut economy after doing what we’re thinking about doing in our future.

Greg Sullivan:

Yeah, Connecticut is a, is a case study of why these sudden very large tax increases can devastate a state economy. So when in, in, in Connecticut after the after the great recession, so called, which is at the end of the president of George W. Bush and beginning of president Obama administration, that recession Connecticut basically has still not recovered from that Massachusetts recovered within two or three years and, and grew, but Matt, but even a decade after that occurred, Cal Connecticut was still trying to recover the job, the employment level. So they had beforehand, they’re the only, basically the only state. They also had a real depression compared to the rest of the country in increase in home values and businesses left, as we know the most famous one being GE, which located to Boston, you know, I mean, the, that was a huge loss of Connecticut. And so it, it, it shows, it just shows you that these tax increases have effects on the general economy. And the general economy can, can bring about adverse effects, downturn that far outstripped the value of the tax increase.

Joe Selvaggi:

Indeed, we’re talking, we’ll introduce a concept called the Laffer curve, where actually you raise taxes and revenue goes down because it has unintended secondary effects, meaning you can, you can tax people, but ultimately if they leave, you you’re left with less tax than you started with your book mentions. In fact, in Connecticut in one year you measure it by net outflow of income one year 2018 before COVID 1.2 billion in net a grossed gross income in one year. So raise the taxes. People leave the taxes go down. And of course, as you mentioned, Connecticut is the, the economy suffering, but the increase taxes didn’t solve the Connecticut’s need for more revenue. In other words the, the state government is still not getting the revenue. It needs to support itself, meaning it’s this downward spiral. It seems.

Greg Sullivan:

Yeah. I mean, if you look at in California, so in California, that’s really Massachusetts’s number one competitor in some respects in the country because they, they’re, they’re a very high tech center and Massachusetts competes. So they, they decided out there to really have a high millionaire stocks and they put it in effect and then companies started to leave. They lost Elon Musk, the, the people who the people say, well, let’s tax let’s let’s tax high income earners. Well, when they’re, when they’re entrepreneurs deciding where to locate, what you have to remember is that they can leave. And Elon Musk and, and Tesla just move the national headquarters to no tax taxes. They don’t have an income tax. So they, so Elon Musk just went from a state where he is gonna pay 13% income tax rate to one where it’s zero and it’s and you say, well, don’t, it’ll never leave California. California’s so great. We’re so, so invaluable. No, doesn’t work that way. Same thing with Massachusetts. It’s very easy for companies to leave now, especially in the post COVID remote work environment, that’s emerging, continuing to emerge.

Joe Selvaggi:

Yeah. It puzzles made that I mean, clearly this is a situation where reasonable people, rational people respond to incentives. I’m amazed by the number of people who want to, let’s say impose a 5 cent cost on a, a tax on a bag at the grocery store with the hope that people bring their own bags to avoid a 5% yeah. Tax or whatever you wanna call it. And yet they won’t leave. If Elon Musk got 13.3% of his income has to be tens of billions of dollars. Why did, why wouldn’t you anticipate him leaving it, it doesn’t make sense to me that people would be surprised, but in your book, you do cite quite a bit of statistics. Studies on this Exodus from California. I think the we’ve had him on hub wonk, the economist from Stanford professor RA measured the inflection point when the tax was imposed a market Exodus of, of high net earners and their companies began to leave California. And what’s also interesting, I think is it’s not just the people who leave. It’s the people who decide not to go in the first place. People look at the tax rates and say, you know what given all things considered and how much it costs to live there, I’m gonna go to a different state. So,

Greg Sullivan:

Yeah, I, I, I think I heard an ad or I read an ad on the internet yesterday it was an ad from the fair share proponents. And it basically said they’re really wealthy. Don’t pay their fair share of taxes. And this would add a a tax of millionaires and the money would be spent on education transportation. That’s a very simple populist measure argument. And it’s very convincing to some people, but what I, what I think people have to begin to think about is what of the effects of doing this on a state like Massachusetts? Are we gonna get adversely affected? Like Connecticut did that the way California did? I think the, the answer is for very likely to end up with a very bad economic outcome for the state, if it happens

Joe Selvaggi:

Right. And I think, you know, people say, well, you know, a little pain is worth it. If we get better better education, better roads, but as you’ve pointed out in your book in California, they didn’t get better educational roads. They got 50% more state workers. That’s what they got for the money. Yeah. They, I don’t think anyone think we need more state workers <laugh> well,

Greg Sullivan:

I mean, in California after the, this was a, this was a really big tax increase like this being proposed here, and it was all was sold on the idea that gonna spend money in education in the end. They didn’t, they spent, I think it was one 10th of 1% more than the constitutional minimum. They never rose it never rose above that. So, and the money was spent on increased in public employee payroll, which, which was which was increased precipitously. And that’s, that’s one of the problems is that is that it’s sold as a sweetener vote for this, for education transportation, but it’s already been dis positively determined by a previous Supreme court case and statements made by the state attorney General’s office that the money doesn’t have to be spent on education, transportation legislature can e spend it, whatever it wants,

Joe Selvaggi:

Of course money is fungible. So if they wanna promise it goes to education, they simply reduce the old dollars by the same amount, they add the new dollars and thereby keep their promise. And not one new penny goes to education. Now we, we sort of touched on it briefly, but close to the top of the show. You mentioned that we’re labeling millionaires is those people who earn more than a million in a year, but you’ve mentioned only briefly, but go into it in depth in your book. People who make a million dollars in one year rarely make it more than once. Meaning it’s usually business owners who sell their business or homeowners who sell their business. People who’ve worked their whole lives, perhaps they’ve deferred income. Their business is their retirement and they get a one time and one time only payout that is very often and, you know, honestly to survive in retirement, one needs, if one’s selling a business more than a million dollars share with us what your book talks about is who are these quote unquote millionaires who will be swept up in this tax?

Greg Sullivan:

Yeah, I mean, going back in the history of the United States it used to be more than 70% of private sector. Employees had a pension plan that since, since that time, it shrunk closer to 10% public employees still have retirement plans, not, not private sector employees for people who have their own business, they started business to operate for 20, 30, 40 years. And that, that the sale of that business, the retirement is their nest egg. That’s why this is a, this and this tax applies to them. In words, there, we call them one time millionaires, more than 50% of the people who earn a million dollars do so only once two thirds, only twice or fewer. So these, these are this, this is, is a tax that is that masquerades as a tax line you know, millionaires driving around to limos wearing silk top hats, like the monopoly guy, but in the end, it’s the company down the street.

Greg Sullivan:

Who’s gonna auto garage. The guy ran for 40 years and he finally sells it. And they say, well, guess what, you’re a millionaire. He said, I did not know I was a millionaire. This is the only, this is my money that I saved up over 40 years and you’re gonna tax, you know, so the, the, the, you know, the proponents, what they should have done, and what many parties asked them to do was to put in some kind of a income averaging to prevent this one time millionaires. Also, they said, don’t tax your sale of your house. You know, so some houses are going for more than a million dollars. A lot of houses are going for more than a million. So why are you gonna count that that’s a one time event. So, but anyway, they threw the kitchen sink in and the tax applies to basically everything every kind of income that’s, that’s a problem.

Joe Selvaggi:

Yeah. That is a problem. And it just occurred to me when you were talking if you’re comparing it to a public pension, when one retires as a public pension, the value of that pension if you were to look at the payout over time would be valued in the millions, but there’s no, there’s no taxable event. They don’t actually sell. And then create that pension rather, they just receive the pension. Whereas the, the business owner was taking lifetime of risk. Must have a taxable event, must sell it in order to re realize a, sort of a pseudo pension, a nest egg that they can spend off in their old age. So one group tax and the other is ignored.

Greg Sullivan:

Yeah. I mean, I said earlier that the main proponents of this are public employees and in their unions, they, they, they’re the, they’re the driving force behind it. And when public employees retire in Massachusetts on a state pension they don’t have any income tax. It’s not there’s zero income tax. So, so the same people who are asking for this tax to go on is retirement tax on private sector. People who run their own business, the public employees who pay zero taxes, and now they want these other folks to pay among the highest taxes in, in America.

Joe Selvaggi:

Yeah, this is, I know the closer you look, the, the worse it gets now, there is, you know, there, you mentioned as some studies, you, you, you briefly brought it up earlier in our conversation that it’s the perception by many that, you know, we call this the fair share because the perception is that high earners are wealthier people don’t pay the same percentage or portion of their overall income in taxes. There’s been some studies and, and your book points to many of the flaws that say, look you know, if I’m making a million dollars every year my, my, the, the percentage of my money going to the government is smaller than the, the poor guy making relatively little $50,000 or $30,000. You know, he’s paying a huge amount of taxes. You’re, you’re your book goes into length and debunks the myth briefly, how would you say, why is it the fact that a flat tax isn’t indeed regressive?

Greg Sullivan:

Yeah. Okay. Well, the, the, I think the strongest argument on that point is that top 10% of income earn in Massachusetts pay more in state taxes than the bottom 90%. Now that’s that’s statistic that we published. It’s based on IRS statistics of Massachusetts reporter reporting tax returns, the top 10% of people in the state for income pay more than the bottom 90%, they pay like 56% of the total, if you follow that. So when people say they’re not paying their fair share they, they, they pay 90%. If this passes they’re gonna pay 95%. So, I mean, it’s, it’s, it’s a myth that high income people don’t pay their fair share, Massachusetts, get a great thing. If you ask me, we, we have a 5% income tax rate. That’s a good rate. It’s advantageous to us. It attracts people to come here and build businesses and to stay here, as opposed to places like Connecticut or New York or California who want constantly wanna steal our businesses from us. So that’s a bad term, but they wanna poach our businesses from us and, and recruit businesses to their states. One of our advantages is a good place to be. It has a fair average tax rate in the country to selling point. And it’s a mistake in my opinion, to get rid of it.

Joe Selvaggi:

And indeed you mentioned in your book and we’re getting near the end of our time together that we that states at least themselves see themselves as laboratories, 50 different laboratories of democracy, and each has its own prerogatives to impose taxes on its citizens, but they’re all competing for the same, let’s say creative investment risk taking audience. They all want the job makers and the economic rainmakers to come to their state. Where are people in Massachusetts going? If, if, if they do leave for greener pasture, where are they likely to go? If you were to guess, if this is imposed, where we accept that they will leave, where will they go? And has that propensity to leave? The, I could think it what do economists call Footloose they’re more Footloose than the, the lower income people where will they go? And why do you think, you know, what, what will be their reasons?

Greg Sullivan:

Well, the, the relocation of people from Massachusetts historically, this, this is a subject that’s closely tracked by the federal government shows that we have been losing billions of dollars over adjusted, gross income to Florida, Florida, New Hampshire, Florida, New Hampshire represents 70% of our outflow of people taking their income to other states. So why Florida has low tax rates, no income tax. There’s no capital gains tax. There’s no estate tax and that’s a magnet, but there’s also the Sunbelt states and Texas North Carolina, California you know, the they’re here advertising pitching to take companies to come to their states. So it’s a, it’s a competition in Massachusetts to, to attract and retain businesses. People should remember that when, when they, when they vote on things like this, because, you know, Massachusetts used to be like the leader in manufacturing in the United States.

Greg Sullivan:

People don’t think that could be true, but if you look at Laurel Lawrence, Lowell, New Bedford, Fall River, Springfield, all of our mill cities, one time we were the national leader, even, even going back recently to like 1970 we, we had a fairly good amount of manufacturing, but it has left manufacturing has left Massachusetts for the most part. And we’ve had to adjust by, by having innovation companies come in. That’s our job is to try to get companies doing a great job in, in Cambridge and Boston, with biotech, route 1 28 around our universities. We, you know, Northeastern BU Harvard, MIT, UFS, you know, we, we have, we have got an advantage to recruit companies, but why do you wanna boom, these people with a, with a nationally high very high tax rate. That’s not an invitation, it’s, it’s a, it’s a ushering them out the door.

Joe Selvaggi:

Yeah, indeed. And we have an endless wellspring of, of talented people coming to our schools. And then we, the fact that we’ve got an advantage, but then squandered that advantage by chasing ’em out with a a high tax rate, if, if they do become successful, I would imagine your, your book does talk a dedicate part of a chapter to the fact that now in this wake of co after COVID, and we’ve all learned how to telecommute you via zoom, we’re even more foots. We’re more inclined to live where we want and therefore take pay taxes where we want, I would imagine the competition among states becomes even greater knowing that one can really work from almost anywhere at this point.

Greg Sullivan:

Yeah. It’s, it’s been a real game changer. The, the, the shift to remote work it grew during COVID and it’s has legs is what we’re seeing of that. So when a company is deciding to whether or not to come to Massachusetts, we have a very high cost of living. We have a high cost of living compared to other areas in the country. That’s a disadvantage for location. But one advantage we do have is that the, is that the state of Massachusetts has been on a pro economic growth strategy since 1970 to reverse our reputation. And I think we’ve we’ve done a good job of, of of ending. And I think that this proposal within a one fell swoop will trigger us back to that that economic, adverse effect of very high taxes.

Joe Selvaggi:

It’s a shame. It seems perhaps every generation needs to learn again, the lessons of the past. I hope we can avoid putting our hand on the stove again and, and learn from other states’ mistakes instead of insisting on doing it ourselves. So we’re at the ti at the end of the time together. We certainly haven’t addressed all the issues in the book. It’s a wonderful book full of facts and figures, where can our listeners buy your book? So they can read it for themselves.

Greg Sullivan:

Amazon.com. Okay. And this is readily available.

Joe Selvaggi:

Wonderful. Wonderful. Yeah, I’m expecting Amazon will have it. It might not be at the Harvard bookstore just yet not it won’t be on that front front page there. Now also, I think you also have this should release before the event. If there’s still tickets left, Pioneer’s having a book release event coming up do you know the day or how our listers can buy tickets for that.

Greg Sullivan:

Yeah. That’s again to make a, to make a reservation for the event, go on www.Pioneerinstitute.org, and it’s very easy to do

Joe Selvaggi:

Wonderful. Well, they can go there for our Hubwonk podcast and also for your book and also to reserve their space for the book launch. So well done. Very good job, Greg. This book was a fun read, an easy read and a wonderful resource when our, let’s say our reachable, our persuadable middle voters when they’re going to that ballot, they’ll at least be armed with a good deal of information. Thank you very much for writing the book. And thanks again for joining me on Hubwonk once again. Thanks, Joe.

Joe Selvaggi:

This has been another episode of Hubwonk. If you enjoyed today’s episode, there are several ways to support the show. It would be easier for you and better for us. If you subscribe to hub wonk on your iTunes podcast, catcher, if you wanna make it easier for others to find Hubwonk, it would be great. If you offer a five star rating or a favorable review, we’re always grateful. If you want to share hub wonk with friends, if you have ideas or comments or suggestions for me, or future episode topics, you’re welcome to email me. Hubwonk@Pioneer institute.org. Please join me next week for a new episode of Hubwonk.

Recent Episodes

Taxation Without Legislation: Exploring Inflation’s Causes, Curses & Cures

Hubwonk host Joe Selvaggi talks with Bloomberg Columnist and National Review Editor Ramesh Ponnuru about the reasons for the sustained spike in inflation, its impact on savers and consumers, the possible policy remedies, and the likely intensity and duration of this cycle.

Lifelines for the Untethered: Research to Reach and Recover Homeless Americans

This week on Hubwonk, host Joe Selvaggi talks with Stephen Eide, Senior Fellow at the Manhattan Institute about his newly released book, Homelessness in America: The History and Tragedy of an Intractable Social Problem, in which he asserts that a better understanding of the many challenges facing each homeless individual can lead to a tailored and more durable policy solution to this enduring societal problem.

Empowered or Exploited Entrepreneurs: Voters Determine Rideshare Drivers’ Fate on November Ballot

/
Hubwonk host Joe Selvaggi talks with communications expert and cofounder of South & Hill Strategies Lizzy Guyton about what the research on the profiles and preferences of rideshare drivers tells us about the industry, and the possible effects of designating independent contractors as employees.

Searching For Space: Massachusetts Real Estate in a Time of Covid

Hubwonk host Joe Selvaggi talks with real estate expert and broker/owner Pauline Donnelly about the disruption and trends created by the Covid-19 pandemic and steps buyers and renters can take to become more informed, prudent, and competitive in the frenzied market of Greater Boston and Martha’s Vineyard.

Forsaking Massachusetts’s Miracle: Risking Our Future With Past Mistakes

This week on Hubwonk, host Joe Selvaggi talks with Greg Sullivan, Research Director at Pioneer Institute and author of Back to Taxachusetts?, about the link between Massachusetts’s decision to reduce tax rates and a generation-long economic renaissance - and the reasons why new taxes such as the proposed, so-called "Fair Share Amendment" risk taking us back to economic stagnation or decline.  

Doctors With Borders: Curing Shortages With International Lifeline

This week on Hubwonk, host Joe Selvaggi talks with Cicero Institute’s Jonathan Wolfson about the growing doctor shortage and the potential to alleviate the crisis by tapping the global supply of well-trained physicians eager to find safety and freedom in the US.

Progressive Policy Study: Californians Dreamin’ While Jobs and People Leavin’

Hubwonk host Joe Selvaggi talks with California Policy Center president Will Swaim about how the state’s ambitious policies have combined to stick its residents with the highest cost of living and a tax regime that discourages investment, innovation, and its vital entrepreneurial class.

Student Debt Cancellation: Paying For Your Neighbors’ College Education

Hubwonk host Joe Selvaggi talks with education financing expert Mark Kantrowitz about the $1.6 trillion in U.S. public student debt - who owes it, who stands to benefit from the Biden administration's recent promise for across-the-board student debt reductions, and what strategies are available to target only those most in need.