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tv   Cato Discussion on State Regulation  CSPAN  August 28, 2018 1:17pm-2:19pm EDT

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strength that left me profoundly impressed. >> point i'm making is -- that 35 month. of time was a period of time rife with issues of constitutional movement. there's a reason the american people have a right to know what he said, how we advised the president and what he wrote. those are things that republicans are hiding from the people, keeping secret. let's not waste any -- >> let's not waste any more time. even to the most committed partisans, he is supremely follow five for the supreme court. so stop playing politics and join us in supporting his confirmation. >> watch day one of the senate confirmation hearing for supreme court nomination brett kavanaugh, live tuesday, september 4 on c-span3. orch anytime on
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listen on the free c-span radio app. >> of next on c-span, a discussion from the cato institute on regulations and how they differ among the states. this is an hour. [murmuring] good afternoon everyone, thank you for joining us. this is one of the last few days of the august recess and we appreciate you being here for this briefing that the cato institute is hosting. i'm the director of government affairs at the cato institute and today we will talk about freedom in the 50 states. i will be moderating this briefing, the fifth edition of freedom in the 50 states, and index of personal and economic freedom, a publication that ranks states based on personal
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freedom, regulatory policy and fiscal policy. you can find the complete list of rankings and a time of information on the website. today are john samples, vice president at the cato institute and the two authors, will ruger and jason soren's. we'll have time for q&a at the end so please hold your questions. without altering over to john samples will introduce our authors.
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thank you. so do the states matter? i think in washington with inclined to forget about them or think they don't matter all that much. after all, the big issues are debated here, not about here, the big history increasingly takes place writer in washington, not in the states. but think about the moment the average citizens or most citizens, their concrete interactions with government are most often going to take place at the state and local level. where you have your children educated, most people will send them to schools. do you want to open a business? you'll find out there are state and local regulations need to deal with. and finally of course if you want to drive a car? , you go to the department of motor vehicles, which probably has made more libertarians than the cato institute. but i think also the states are important in another way. we are accustomed thinking about government being accountable through the voting booth. you go in november, boat. -- vote. those people that are elected are accountable to you the voters. in the american system with 50 states if you don't like the kind of government you're
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you're getting. you don't like the policies being pursued, you can go somewhere else. of course it's important that people be able to compare and contrast. they have to have information. citizens have to have information if they're going to vote with their feet. that brings us to what i think is the real -- one of the many , "freedom this study in the 50 states" attempts in a systematic way to give citizens and policymakers that kind of information they need to have the best government at the state and local level. let's begin with a brief introduction of our co-authors and i will turn it over to them. our first speaker is a research fellow in foreign policy studies at the cato institute. he is also vice president for research and policy at the charles koch institute. jason sorens is a lecturer in the department of government and program director of the political economy project at dartmouth college. gentleman, we await your
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information. >> thank you, john and thank you to the cato institute for publishing this book. if you want to know who is number one you might look at my that might give you some indication but i'll save that for now. so again welcome and thank you for coming to hear about our study of freedom in the 50 states, this is the fifth edition of this book. we been doing this now for over a decade and with david nichols on the back to 2000 so reasonable to able to nicely look at a variety of different policies overtime. "freedom in the 50 states" is the most comprehensive study and ranking of freedom across the 50 states. it doesn't just examine economic freedoms, fiscal and regulatory. also looks at personal freedoms and that was one of the big innovations of the study right from the beginning. it was the first that if it ever
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looked at personal freedoms either at the national or international level that we know of. our study looks at three big categories. fiscal policy, regulatory policy and policies that relate to government paternalism, or personal freedom. again as a this is the fifth addition. it is revised, updated fully and its expanded. what is the purpose, really? john highlighted that a little bit. we want to measure and compare the states based on how the public policies affect individual freedom. we want to know how the government impinges on peoples economic freedom, on their businesses through regulation, for example, and in the personal spheres, quote-unquote bedroom issues. of course it's not just the academic exercise. we want to look at freedom, because it is valuable for its own sake. we also do what to look at how freedom affects effects of the
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things that we care about. so, for example, economic health, economic prosperity. how freedom might impact our wallets we also want to look at how it might impact movement across the united states in terms of migration patterns. we can do this with our study, and one of the things we think is valuable about this study is we provide this massive data set now all the way back to 2000. think about all those years multiplied by 230 variables times 50 states. that's a lot of data. one of the things we've seen is scholars and policy analysts have used that data to talk about all kinds of things we didn't anticipate. in other words, create a spontaneous order around data, kind of data informed social science analysis. we think that of value to this and we hope other people will use that data try to explore these issues. other folks might want to use this would be legislators and their staff. they can see other states are
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doing relative to other states and sometimes it takes a comparative analysis to say may be we should be uneasy that what's happening in our states and change. why are we using occupational licenses for funeral home attendance when all these other states are not? or if people say we can't do it this way when it comes to zoning, you can still look at obvious of the states are doing it. i think it's valuable for those folks and just to see if they care about freedom, how are we doing? citizens can make decisions on where they might want to retire within might want to move the business or move themselves. jason has talked about and some of the interviews he's been doing this week about how he moved from new york to new hampshire in part because of some of the regulations on education that new york had that new hampshire didn't. reporters can use this. senator porter is here, thank you. you can use this to see how
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states are looking international context, to see some areas that are right for more investigation. why is our state doing this? why is our state like new york? what are the revoking drivers licenses for nondriving drug offenses? how does that affect people who are trying to get back on the ladder of economic success if you can't drive around, particularly if you're not in any way there's not a lot of public transportation or uber options. there's just way you can use -- there is a lot of different ways you can use this. and so even though i joke about the who is number one, hopefully this is a really just merely about the sizzle or the rankings but about that substance, about the state, if you will. -- of the stake if you will. so one of the great things about states is that the american federal system is still alive. it's been hampered over the last 80 years but is still alive and that allows state governments to talk to really do with a lot of -- deal with a lot of different issues across the board. -- iy federalism is alive
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say federalism allies as -- is alive and states are important, because we have seen that. particularly back when there was more, with all three branches were not in the hands of the same, i guess the judiciary is an enhanced of the partisan branch but we know what you're talking about in terms of the fact that more unified government in terms of party, but when we had more divided government wasn't maybe as much action happening here as what was happening in the states. criminal justice and police reform, you had really important initiatives when it came to dealing with prisons, dealing with civil asset forfeiture scum -- in states like new hampshire, the breast, new hampshire bullied in terms of pushing civil asset forfeiture reform. fiscal policy changes, florida has done a great job in terms of its fiscal policies over the last 15-20 years. a lot of action. while the federal government seems to have not cared very much about spending increases relative to both the economy and to just absolutely, states have paid attention to that.
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think about marijuana policy, colorado, washington, alaska, others have been at the forefront of this. education policy, nevada, arizona, florida. regulatory reform, indiana, wisconsin, michigan, states that the right to work. -- these are states that did write to work. state governments are active and sometimes we miss that. it's also the case state governments are competing for citizens and businesses. they have to pay attention to this because people and businesses to vote with the fee. --feet.- seat they have to attract those people, and also as justice brandeis talked about states are those laboratories for democracy where experimentation can happen. so how do we define freedom? have a very typical american conception of this. we believe freedom is a moral concept and we said that freedom is the ability to order your life, liberty and property as you see fit, consistent with the
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equal rights of others. it's a very traditional american way of understanding it. it's not radical. our index includes freedom, or freedom includes freedom from unjust private and public interference. we are measuring the public side of that, it is not the purpose of this to look at how affective our police department and securing your property rights to keeping feeds out of your house. we're looking at how this impingent in tinges -- s on these areas and of the people shall look at those of the cases but we are focusing public policies here. even though we realized that you're not in the state of freedom if your personal and private property rights are being violated by private citizens. we also exclude abortion and the death penalty. it's not because we don't have strong views on that but because the are reasonable quote-unquote freedom argument that could be made of different sides of the issue. take abortion, whether the government should secure the
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right to abortion or secure the right to life of unborn persons or people, depends on your view of when life begins. that's a scientific or the logical religious, kind of beyond what we're trying to do in the study. we excluded that but we provide alternative indices at the end of the book. you can look at that at the website where we provide all this data can provide those alternative indices so if you have strong pro-choice you or a strong you are view, or somewhere in between, you can look at what freedom would look like if you include abortion. but for the top line rankings we don't do that or the death penalty. i will just briefly give an aside on freedom and relative particularly if you're conservative person who install ethical feelings about people would use their liberty, that we have a law of equal freedom.
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your ability to dispose of your life, liberty and property as you see fit consistent with equal rights of others is a law of equal freedom. we are not taking a stance on a -- how people use that freedom. if you think people using drugs are acting immorally, in a way that's a consistent with their flourishing, or if you think that there really ought to be kind of certain views about different kind of culture war issues, there's nothing while of people holding those strong views. the question is, do we utilize the power of government to enforce those use? in this piece we are not taking a normative position on those issues, but what we are saying is that the states should not intrude. we do have strong views. for example, we might think very strongly about the fact that heroin use is not consistent
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with someone's flourishing, generally speaking, i think that's a pretty easy one. we are happy to say that it were not moral relativist. -- to say that, we are not moral relativist. that being said, we take a strong position that the state should be regulating bakery hours even if you think that an employer shouldn't have the workers work 60 hours a week. we think that should be up to the freedom of contract. we've written on this if you're interested at -- reasoned that, we wrote a the case for -- that you might find of interest. moving back to the data, we measure freedom from 2000-2016, the year and to 2016, the to 2016, the beginning of 2017 2017 is one of data closes. we looked at over 230 variables.
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we are not cherry picking just a few things that matter to us or might matter to the cato institute. we're kind of look at a full range of policies at the state level and this is everything from state and local tax burden to government consumption the debt, occupational licensing to right to work laws, from drug and alcohol policy to even raw milk sales. it's all covered. naturally tax burden accounts for more than raw milk sales. we are measuring these equally -- we are not measuring these equally, and i get to that in a second but fiscal regulatory and personal freedoms account for about one-third of the value of the index. how do we weight these? it's not subjective. we didn't wake up one morning and say let's go through and rank or wait all these policies as they affect over 300 million people. we will just decide that for ourselves. that would be a a recipe for disaster probably because someone thinks jason and i probably don't care about like i'm not a gambler, jason is not a gambler, these things do matter to a lot of people that freedom to do so.
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that came through when we started looking at what is the cost to those whose freedoms are actually imposed upon by government regulation? we use research that's been done by economists, political economist and scientists and other scholars to look and find out what is that cost to those people? if you want more on the specifics of how we do that, again look at the pdf that is available online or get a copy of the book. it's an objective waiting --weighting system. again you still might disagree with our objective system. again we think it's the best one otherwise would never put in the book, but the fact is you might disagree on that or you might think in every vote would include say right to work is not one that should be in there, so we put in there, and it is one of the great things at our website, is that we have sosonalize your rankings,
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you can go in and say i care a lot about raw milk sales, it should be 50% of the index because i i cannot floors as a human without the ability to drink straight from the tap, if you will. that's one of the things we put in there, and i think it's an exciting thing, because because -- because libertarians and classical liberals and conservatives often times tend to be excited about peoples ability to choose. so here you can choose your rankings. one of the thinks about our -- looking at the quote and victim cost if you will of government regulation but it's also true we think that some things that are so fundamental to rights that they been encoded in the constitution, for example, think about freedom of speech or the second amendment rights or the been recognized by a court in the united states as being fundamental. those things get additional weight because of the fact they are seen as so fundamental. things like eminent domain reform connects up with constitutional guarantees. you think about things like regulatory takings are physician-assisted suicide. though several things that
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-- those are things courts have talked about as being fundamental. i want to go to the weight before turning it over but if you look you can see there's are -- these are some of the weights for the fiscal policy categories. state taxation is a big part of that but it even goes down to things like government debt. next you can look at regulatory policy, land land use is a big -- land-use is a big deal particularly because this will affect peoples ability to choose housing as they might see fit. it also has health insurance, labor market regulations and so forth. in terms of personal weights, incarceration and arrests, and this is crime adjusted, so we're not saying that your absolute level of people in prison is a bad thing. it depends on the crime rate. some people deserve to be in prison, but we look at the crime adjusted incarceration and arrest rates because that's valuable to see if a problem with excessive sentencing for over criminalization, picky when
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-- particularly when it comes to victimless crimes or consensual crimes. you can see here the whole roster thing, gunfights, also -- gun rights, marriage freedom, these are valuable. some of these things would appeal to people in blue states. appealed to people in red. this is not a conservative index if you look at with marijuana freedom and so forth. that's working worked on that's -- that is where we are on personal freedom. in terms of what's changed over the last few years since the fourth edition, one is that we have the annual data. we used to collect data every two years and now we collect annual data and we filled in that date in the past. that made for a great business -- christmas break for both of us. we have improved the weights look at that new research toause we want to be a live innovation and social science. we've also been added new and approved variables so that we include financial assets of government and this is way to offset government debt because if states have cash on hand that
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should offset that. think about land-use regulations , collateral consequences of arrest and incarceration, things like drivers license revocation, things like the cost of prison phone calls. also included gambling wins, in other words, the revenue the state is getting from that. we also include indices of which policies have been federalized and which ones have not, because there are something set up and taken out of the hands of state governments. if you think about gun control or healthcare, these are areas in which federal court decisions and federal legislative efforts have reduced federalism and sometimes for good, sometimes depending on your view. we have an index of cronyism to understand that particular problem with our body politic. in terms of the rankings, drumroll, please. in terms of fiscal policy you can see florida does really well.
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it's our number one state on fiscal policy, followed by new hampshire, tennessee, pennsylvania, north dakota. and new york, a state that paul krugman in a tweet today said that we were saying was a tyrannical hellhole, is number 50. thank you, paul. appreciate that. always good press to hear from a nobel laureate. in terms of regulatory policy, kansas in the number one state followed by nebraska, idaho, iowa and indiana and get again -- yet again, new york performs really stellar there. when you look at economic freedom which is both fiscal and regulatory policy you can see again that florida is performing best across-the-board pickle the although, onrd, regulatory policy, is not actually as good as it is on fiscal policy or on personal freedom for that matter to its and everywhere you can probably improve the most little to do other states. you see new york performs quite badly here. then terms of personal freedoms,
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things change. new york is not number 50, not it'syrannical hellhole, only number 40. you see a cast of characters, maine, nevada, new hampshire and a fortunate i lived in texas for a long time. i was a professor at texas state university, go bobcats, the fact is that texas doesn't perform very well on personal freedom. we can go into that were in the q&a if that is of interest to you. now the overall rankings. and here we have remarked at -- vermont 46, new jersey 47, california, hawaii and, bam, new york. they are worse by far so we'll see some of that data. they are not even close. as far as the best states, florida is number one followed by new hampshire, indiana, colorado and nevada. those at the top five. florida is a new number one here based, compared to last
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published version of this. so that's exciting to see something interesting and different there. it wasn't something i expected or we expected when we ran the data, but the proof of the pudding is in the eating and you look at the data and that's what popped up. i'm going to turn over to jason to talk about some of the implications of these freedom rankings and freedom scores. thank you. >> thanks, will. i'd like to next take a look at how some of the top and bottom states have evolved over time, and so you can see that new hampshire used to be in a class in the early 2000s , freedom declined significantly up until the 2010 election seem to be a turning point. a lot of states, 2009 was a turning point. what we found in a lot of states is that they respond to the great recession by cutting spending, and they have kept
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fiscal restraints since. as a result we've seen a big increase in average fiscal freedom overtime and we see that in these top states as well. you see that florida in particular has rebounded quite strongly from the late 2000s fiscal crunch. the states them to the bottom tend to just be drifting downward. vermont of all the states in the union is the most worsened state since 2000 or it is lost the most freedoms since 2000 according to our data set. look at how state average over overall freedom has changed over time, it kind of mirrors some of those figures with software -- figures we saw for specific states where average freedom is declining to the 2000s. in particular the first half of the 2000 at that is got up since 2010. it's important note these figures we are showing on state
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average scores over time exclude federalized policies. if you include federalized policies, policies that congress or the supreme court has essentially taken over nationalized, you will see a less rosy picture particularly because of the aca, or the so-called obamacare adopted the most restrictive health insurance regulation regime that was extant into many of the state of the type was passed and as a result that looked like a big decline in regulatory freedom, economic freedom and overall freedom for all the states, particularly, other than massachusetts which already had it, and particularly the states that are more free market with health insurance to begin with. we do an index of cronyism. we introduce this in the fourth edition and update that in this edition. this looks specifically at barriers to entry and entering an industry or an occupation as well as restrictions on prices.
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so how state government regulates prices, wisconsin is one of the estate has a minimum markup law for all retail sales. you have to they force you to charge more than you otherwise might. in terms of freedom from cronyism at the fewest of these policies with colorado at the top and then california is our most cronyism state. we have noticed cronyism as a statistical relationship to a couple of interesting variables. one of them we are not displaying is corruption. so state corruption rate even, especially as estimated by statehouse reporters is strongly negatively related to freedom from cronyism. so marconi states are more corrupt, i a higher lobbyist to legislator ratios, we don't know which way the causation goes. it could be the more lobbies give you more crony policies or possibly the other way round you adopt more crony policies you get more lobbyist because her
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-- they are trying to get exemptions from these. we find a strong relationship between public ideology and partisanship, and freedom on the other. particularly economic freedom. this text is a little bit small, but what we have on the top of this is the relationship between democratic and green vote share in we at economic freedom in 1996. 2000 and you see a noisy but negative relationship especially once you get past the midpoint. the most democratic states significantly less free on average than moderate states. we see this relationship seems to strengthen somewhat, there are fewer outliers when we look in 2016. when we look at personal freedom we don't see that relationship, and that might be as you expect. red states are from our
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perspective good on some personal freedoms and bad on others, and vice versa for blue states. in the early 2000s the was apositive relationship between democratic partnership and personal freedom. that has gone away now in part because of things like the obergefell decision that increased personal freedoms in a lot of red states. do americans value freedom? we were not sure what we would find when we first investigated this. in the first edition would look at migration and early 2000s. what we saw been was that for states that attracted people, -- freer states did tend to attract people. we saw this across all three dimensions, so people living from states that are low on fiscal regulatory and personal freedom the states that are higher on those three dimensions. what we are not able to do because of this longtime series is to split the sample and see if we were to predict in the first edition that in future the
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state set have more freedom are going to have more migration in the future, does that hold true out of sample? and it does. when we look post great recession would find the same relationship that americans are moving from less free states to freer states. we look at that and a variety of ways. we compare states to the neighbors and this relationship only strengthens. we do see evidence that people our purpose grace -- great recession, are more strongly motivated by economic freedom and personal freedom when they move. personal freedom was stronger free great recession which might make sense. people are less likely to seek a personal freedom when their economic position is uncertain. they might be more motivated by jobs and things like that which depend on the investments of entrepreneurs. these relationships hold a large range of controls within the
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-- controls, including climate. not simply people living to for your states because they happen to better climates. here we show some of the relation ships between freedom and migration. here's pre-great recession recession. you see states that were freer in 2000 got a lot more migration over the next eight years, and there's some outliers. nevada and arizona have huge in migration figures people were presumably moving their other than just for freedom, whereas a state like louisiana has more outmigration and you would expect probably because of hurricane katrina. this relationship seems just a -- as strong between freedom of migration when the post great recession and we see that new york, for instance, are worse -- our worst state of freedom is also the worst state over the last 15 years in terms of net outmigration. 14% of new york's population 2000 and subsequently moved out
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-- has subsequently moved out of state to another state since then. we look at economic corporate want to look at economic growth in particular growth of personal income. we wanted to look especially at the growth of personal income rather than employment growth, because there might be this objection so statement creating , jobs come with a good jobs? income growth is a way of looking at that. not just job growth but how good are these jobs? when you look at econom states, there are a couple of pitfalls studies. find in other capita income is a bad measure of economic health in the state. why? because people can move across states. so if the state has high per capita income, that means it's a state that is attractive to rich people. that does not mean it is a state
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that is attractive to everyone or is more productive. in fact, there are a lot of states with high per capita income that people are flowing out of because they can't afford to live there. massachusetts is an example. we can't look at per capita income to compare states. we can use that to compare countries in terms of productivity, but when a state improves economic policies, the reward is not a big increase in per capita income. maybe a small increase but mostly what you get is new residents, workers, and jobs in the state. so we have to use just total personal income, not per capita. we have to adjust for cost-of-living, if you do not do that you will not get a full picture because cost-of-living varies dramatically across the states, in particular a state like california, very high cost of living. housing is extremely expensive. that's not news to anybody. once you adjust for that, california looks like one of the
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worst economic performers in the country over the past does code decades and not one of the better ones. adam smith said little else is requisite to carry the state to the highest degree of opulence and the lowest barbarism but taxes, and a tolerable administration of justice, all of the rest of this being brought about by the natural course of things. is he right about this do we need easy taxes and it tolerable administration of justice for growth? and testing those things are helpful. we find economic freedom not personal freedom which is what we'd expect, economic freedom is a source with growth. once we look at state cost-of-living adjustment personal income growth, we control for the region of the country, we control for initial capital per worker and we split the sample pre- and post-great recession can we see some evidence that regulatory policy was more significant for growth pre-recession. fiscal is more important postrecession, but the bottom line is that economic freedom is important, equally important actually both pre- and
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post-great recession for economic growth. so freedom does seem to have instrumental value in addition to its inherent interest. with that we would like to open up the questions. >> thanks, jason and thanks, will. i will start off with a couple of questions. the first one open ended. what is it that so great about florida and what is it that is so bad about new york? >> well, they are obviously both great places but their policies are very different. a state like florida has really avoided the kind of stifling tax burdens that other states have put on their peoples, particularly after the great recession, but florida over the last 15 to 20 years has been remarkable in keeping the clamps down.
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it has done something positive, not just not doing bad things that is then some positive things in terms of corporate taxes. another area it's done quite well compared to the california or new york is to make sure that land-use restrictions haven't been so onerous as to harm housing, which is a major aspect of a flourishing life is being able to afford reasonable accommodation. florida has some restrictions on the ability of localities to regulate land use in a way that is harmful to its citizens. that's been something important. it's also had educational reforms that is invaluable. i think there are number three inthey are number three terms of educational freedom, due to some of the programs that were started i think under jeb startedi think were under jeb bush and so that's been valuable for florida. uncoached adjacent to talk about
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new york, which is obviously not burma or madagascar in terms of its freedoms, but in the americas perspective is clearly number 50 as you saw. >> new york is interesting. it has by far the highest state and local tax burden in the country and when we visited this -- when we investigated this, we find that the state government tax burden is one of the highest if not completely out of whack with some of the high tax states. the local tax burden is extremely high, far higher than even the second-highest state, so it's 8.5% it can convert to new jersey which is 5.5% of the next highest. we investigated why this was at this time, and we found not necessarily local governments fault be tax burden is so high in new york. it has to do with state mandates on local governments including collective bargaining rules, almost zero control over employee benefits and very generous collective bargaining rules make it difficult for them to control public employee wages. that's driven of the tax burden.
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it's not just tax burden. we see new york as a high debt burden, it has rent controls, one of the four states what economists have studied the effects of rent control in your city, and found that it's about one-third of a billion dollars per year are simply destroyed by weight control. that is a dead weight loss. that's huge, plus a large redistribution of wealth away from tenant in uncontrolled properties which also counts in . our index as a loss for freedom. new york has restrictive labor laws that are sort of are sort of anti-employment, high minimum wages that hurt of state -- upstate employers, especially potential employees, unskilled workers in the upstate because they just can't afford to pay that kind of which to an unskilled worker in rural new york. they have mandatory short-term disability insurance, mandatory
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paid family leave. additional cost to employees and an administrative burden for employers. new york on the personal freedoms side is average in some areas. its average on incarceration rates would expect a deep blue state would be better than average on incarcerates, so that hurts new york. for gun rights, no need to go into that. it's highly restricted in new york. new york, will mention new york is wonderfully handful of states that penalize you for a drug offense, taking for your -- taking away your license. new york is bad for homeschoolers, which is probably the most restrictive state for homeschooling. so there are variety of reasons why new york doesn't do well on either personal or economic freedom. we could mention cigarette taxes, which almost about to complete tobacco prohibition in york city, they are so high and, of course, you get black markets as result of that.
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>> i want to add that this is a -- this has a big effect on what -- where people are choosing to live. if you look at new york, for example, you would think new york would be an attractive place for people to move. it is a great city like new york city, a world of mega- city that is attractive to people coming from abroad. it should be attracted to people -- attractive to people throughout home, but new york has lost 14% of its 2000 population since 2000. that's just remarkable. that's on net, that's taking a couple of people who are coming from other states and the outflow is pretty massive. i guess you'd want to be in the kind of rental truck business in new york, right? compare that to a state like florida, our number one state, and florida is having people flooded in. and it's not just retirees, older americans. it's also younger americans are looking for opportunities. perhaps they're the low skilled
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worker in upstate new york who can't get a job because of the fact that the minimum wage is so high, or because that tax burden is so stifling because housing costs. upstate, relatively it is affordable housing because housing stock they had. they are not opportunistic even if you can get a house cheaply it's much harder to get jobs and other economic dimon is him that -- economic dimon is him -- dynamism that yassin in -- you see in florida. this is a real case in which outcomes are impacted by freedom. people who for lots of different reasons, the weather, family, natural immunities but on the margins freedom matters and you can see that in states like new york convert a florida look at nevada to produce, 40. california has probably the best weather, great cities, lots of things to do, mountains, beaches, hollywood.
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and yet 6% of the population has , compared to net nevada which is growing. indiana has lost a little bit of population like a lot of those rust belt states but compare that to illinois with it lost 10% of the population on net. illinois has a great city like chicago, which has grown in terms of its economic dynamism and it's just a great city, lots of things to do. answer if you compare indiana to illinois you can see there's a freedom advantage. you see between massachusetts and new hampshire, vermont and new hampshire. it's just hard to look at these paired comparisons and say we don't think freedom matters. even if you didn't do the regression analysis that we do. >> interestingly florida is the number two destination state for people moving out of new york after new jersey. we look at the age demographics of people moving out by five-year chimes, and we found the biggest age demographic movement from new york to
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florida is 20-24 year olds. so it's not retirees. >> since were on capitol hill, another question of federal policy that can affect states and local policies. you have marijuana policy for example. some states have ignored federal policy in cities as well with complete legalization or for medicinal uses. what other types of policies on the federal level can affect the what other types of policies on the federal level can affect the states were maybe the state says we just want to be in compliance with federal law? >> that's a good question. i mean, so in terms of what's happenedhappening in our index is we've seen that courts have struck down state sodomy laws, same-sex marriage bans and local gun bans. mcdonald versus chicago, the big things out that accord sedan. congress likes health insurance regulations. if there's a lesson from that, that power is still centralizing overtime in washington.
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but in general when courts do it it's good for f washington. but in general when courts do it it's good for freedom, and when congress doesn't it's bad for freedom, least that's the lesson of the last 16 years. other areas where states can nevertheless, the federal government cannot, do the states.the states. so states can choose whether or not to enforce federal laws we've seen with marijuana states have legalized it and the federal government doesn't have the resources to go in and force federal law on all these places. we have seen that with sanctuary towns and cities and states. they don't have to enforce federal immigration law. this is black letter constitutional law the federal government can't force them to do this. we can also come in other areas there's some states have tried to do this on firearms. montana passed a law saying that they montana manufactured a gun does not have to follow the restrictions of the national firearms act to complete that
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-- act. that hasn't been litigated yet in terms of whether i can get around the interstate commerce issue but certainly montana as the state is not going to be enforcing the law there, looks like. >> and i think the marijuana policy issues a great example of how states have the power to block washington on certain issues and in some cases that's the good thing for liberty. and i think we sometimes forget, it's interesting to know why we think this because if you look at the original constitutional design, states are really empowered in our system. we oftentimes think of the coequal branches of government. you look at congress versus the presidency but we oftentimes forget that it's not necessarily a kind of pure hierarchical system which washington gets to dictate everything down that it wants to.
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there are significant powers that the states have in the states can push back, given, so think of the case of a lot of the areas like kind of, you know, what used to be called kind of health safety and morality issues. those are areas in which the states like with the marijuana policy can really push back. because of the fact the federal government can't commandeer it, states, and they can push back. there are some areas like the civil rights when states have pushed back. that's been a bad thing for liberty. we saw that with jim crow in which states are violent -- were violating individual rights and that required a federal solution there. >> very quickly i just want to mention that the federal government does have an adverse effect on state policy.
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i think at some of the ways you could talk about a cool shared with civil asset forfeiture. a lot of has been driven by the federal government. they require landscape architects to have a state license to work on federal funded projects. states have an incentive to start licensing that profession. >> great, i didn't just one other quick question. jason, you mention cronyism which makes me think corporate welfare. where does this fall in the rankings where states and local governments offer tax breaks, subsidies, loan guarantees where, to lure big corporations? we saw with amazon's second headquarters were every city was trying to draw amazon in or use a taxpayer-funded date fund an arena with pumps acute economic benefits later. where does that fall in the rankings? >> it doesn't directly. no one has good data on this. good jobs first to try to get data on this.
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right now it's just kind of a massive data on projects that they happen to get information on and we don't know thcts that they happen to get information on and we don't know that it's companies is, it's not organized by your source not suitable for our purposes. the one thing i will say is that states the simply do not have a broad-based tax are unable to offer incentives on that tax. if you don't have a state income tax or state corporate income tax, you're not going to happen lots of exemptions and loopholes to these taxes. in general states with lower tax burdens as a measure of going to be the ones that don't have these broad-based tax systems and have to be six inches because the more exemptions you have, the higher rates have to be. >> we have about ten minutes left. please wait for a microphone to come near you so the cameras can pick it up. >> i had a question on methodology. how do you parse out restrictions in one field or area that may add to freedoms and another?
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for example, local tax that is used to expand transportation options, thereby giving people the freedom to be able to live further away from the workplaces, cheaper housing, et cetera. >> so our index is only index of negative freedoms we don't include positive freedoms like access to resources. we do take this into account though in how we weight tax burden. we realized taxes pay for some valuable things and so we look at how people value the services from taxes. we use that to basically shrink the weight of tax burdens would be the intuitive way to think about it. tax burden is worth a lot less than otherwise. we're not us in every dollar tax gives you diminution of freedom. >> i do think it's important though that freedom isn't your ability to live in your life you choose at the cost of others. and so if someone doesn't have the ability to own a printing
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press it's not governments responsibility to provide one so that you can have your first amendment rights. it means government can't restrict your vote to run a newspaper or website or a blog. on the left side against the wall. >> when you think of texas commuting to one of the free states and union, at least the top five, but your ratings, lawsuit 45th, regulatory 26 health insurance for the night and guns 29. wonder why that is what it's falling in most of those? >> we should both jump in. i used to live in texas for a long time and he was born in texas so will try to take this on the isle of texas. -- take this on. i love texas. texas forever, right? but, unfortunately, texas has not lived up to its own hype as far as freeing individuals from the kind of paternalism of the stick. it's number 50 on personal freedom.
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a big part of that is driven by the above the crime rate adjusted incarceration and arrests. it does poorly in its criminal justice areas. there is a key caveat, special because my friends at the texas public policy foundation and at right on crying would remind us texas has been leading in reform efforts to try to get a handle on that problem. because they recognize that this is a real challenge. you've had too many people in is a real challenge. you've had too many people in prison in texas, especially relative to the crime rate. that's why you things like right on cry. -- on crime. you to be smart on this, not just tough and for a long time texas was just tough without thinking about being smart. that's when using conservative leadership there in the legislature with governor perry and others to try to get a handle on that because they know they have a problem.
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you want to add anything? >> one example of taxes being overbearing on criminal justice is on marijuana policies where one of the few states where you can still get life in prison for a single marijuana offense not involving a minor simply cultivate a large amount of marijuana can theoretically send you to prison for life. in gun rights, texas here has come it's not as if it's bad weather for gun rights. you want to add anything? it's just that most dates have been liberalizing donbass overtime, and taxes i% overtime, and taxes is not a constitutional carry state. it is and shall issue statement permits a kind of expensive and difficult to obtain. in terms of her some hoops to jump through. since our closing date on the index, texas legalized open carry, but it will probably rise on gun policy the next edition but as of the closing date it completely banned open carry.
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those are some reasons why wasn't so good on gun rights. actually i do things like education we are sort of curious to see that texas doesn't have school choice programs, even though states like arizona and florida and indiana have gone very far in affording school choice depends. that last one is important. >> if texas wants to stay on the cutting edge and texans are very keen to be number one, educational freedom, giving families more choices is i think would be a huge thing for texas. even more important than the rankings is this will be just good for the children of texas and that's part of the problem is these policies are not good for the kids of texas.
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>> i was noticing that on every single one of the rankings that are on this paper, hawaii seems to be in the bottom five for every single one. i'm just wondering why that was? >> i think first we're excited to have jen z here at the event. my kids are jen c and there watching at home but it's great to have you here so thanks for coming. >> hawaii is a pretty regular state all around. it has very high taxes and the stacks also centralized estates to get some benefit. most tax estate by the local level, a lot of local
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governments to choose from because there's the idea of maybe what local governments are doing is basically just providing services that people want to much more so than when it's all centralized at the state level and is not as much choice within the state. hawaii is the only state with a whole state is a school district. if you don't like a a school district, moved to another state. [laughing] probably now that illinois is an -- probably the most restrictive state for guns. not totally surprising. restrictive for labor law. hawaii has had as a result of this big outmigration, so hawaii has lost 6% of its population on net to other states. you will have to mess up your policies badly if you're driving people away from tropical paradise. that's what's going on there. >> so with somewhat less pride in abydos at the beginning of this, i'm from new york. [laughing] and actually i just wonder what the data show in terms of like you were talking about overtime have states have been moving and if it's the case that states that already kind of in a a bad position are more likely to get worse, like, temperature michigan with deliberate and to convey forms is probably because of chicago, a bunch of people trying to make things better and there taking away liberties. new york might raise taxes to fix the nta of something like
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that. but those sorts of things happen a lot or is not really the case like over the 50 states? >> one of the problems, again not to beat up new york because we forget that hawaii, california, new jersey, vermont are also doing quite poorly. not to beat up on new york or to beat up on new york, maybe i am, there's just a different mindset about the relationship between the individual and the government there. at least within the governing class. it's more than just like what they say. it's also what they reveal. there's just this notion what they do and what they say that government needs to do a lot of stuff. oftentimes it's well-intentioned i think. think about the 20-ounce soda ban on california think about the strut issue that's popular now.
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people being killed in yemen but straws are the most important thing. but this is a case which is just a paternalistic mindset. and having lived in a lot of different places, i've lived in utah, texas, indiana, new hampshire, massachusetts if the fact is you look at these places and to visit new york, it's a different approach. new hampshire writes don't like to be told what to do. -- new hampshirites don't like to be told what to do. it's why the score well across the board. states like florida and after, call about a arnott states just a little in economics and also got a personal freedom or vice versa. they're doing well across the board. i think that flows falafel political culture. there's a debate in political science and the institutions versus culture. both have an impact but i think political culture matters.
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that's what are the things that so frustrating about texas is i think there is a political culture of liberty but at the same time there are some other threads threat texas local culture that pushes in the other direction, taken in the past and so there's some past dependence from that. ideally texas is more individualistic political culture that talks love the freedom will outweigh some of those other things and maybe then texas could realize it's right and proper place in the ld realize it's right and proper place in the top five. >> i think political culture matters. there is no accident that the budget midwestern states that do well on regulatory policy but i also have a pet theory about a change overtime because i think the data support us. we do sing when the virgins in freedom. the freest states have become freer, especially post 2003. the less free states are just sort of drifting less and less free it seems like. i think this has a lot to do with a change in gop attitudes toward public policy at the state level after the bush years. during the bush years a lot of red states lost freedom, and during the obama years they seemed to rediscover it.
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read into that what you will but host 2010 that we've seen all these reform initiative in places like wisconsin and indiana and michigan and new hampshire. it's red states are not take it on occupational licensing and repealing certificate of need laws and doing right to workers, a republican party that not one they stressed until recently. i think there has been a change from our perspective, a good one and in republican governments at the state level. also you see some change in which states, and state partisanship. you area that on all you you are going to michael going to vegas october for work maybe were and like brad or michael yeah i know but if you can that is why they
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could pass gun-control laws and not suffer in vermont, when it came to guns it was much more like new hampshire than deep blue states. i used to joke with people from texas that vermont had better gun laws in texas which was absolutely true and that always shook up the texans because i think of them as hippie birkenstock wearers and the freedom lovers. you have seen more and more people moving from places like new york and connecticut and that has changed the culture in vermont. i guess we will see, but i think that might be why a republican governor could sign gun-control laws and not suffer as they might have 20 or 30 or 50 years
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ago. when it came to guns, it was more like new hampshire than the deep blue states. i used to joke with people from texas that vermont had better gun laws in texas which was absolutely true and that always shook up the texans because i think of them as hippie birkenstock wearers and the freedom lovers. >> we are out of time. i want to thank everyone for attending the conference. if you have additional questions or want to get in touch with jason and will, please feel free to talk to us "after words". thank you [inaudible conversations] -- thank you. [applause] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations]


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