From the wonderful folks at Planet Money comes news of yet more evidence of the lack of evidence for one the most common claims the plutocrats and their shills throw out every time the pitchforks are pointed their way: that states which threaten to raise taxes on the rich to avoid shutting down schools and libraries and kicking ever more low-income, elderly and disabled residents off their health plans will send the golden geese fleeing to greener pastures across their borders.
Turns out two new studies profiled by the Planet Money crew show yet again that such claims have about as much value as what all those geese leave strewn about their stomping grounds (and I don’t mean gold). Jeff Thompson of the Political Economy Research Institute at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, the author of one 18-year study, puts it succinctly: "Taxes [have] essentially no impact on causing people to leave a state."
A second researcher, Charles Varner of Princeton University, studied the effect of taxes on people moving from New Jersey after it increased taxes on those making over $500,000 by 2.6%. What happened? "The vast, vast majority just don't respond to the tax. They stay put."
That’s quite a bit of egg of the faces of the tax-averse plutocrats and their front men.