And every one of those jobs is there for two reasons: First, because there are no unions in the south; and second, because Alabama gave enormous tax abatements and other financial inducements to the manufacturers in order to lure them to Alabama. Those inducements included things like building roads and railway lines to the plant locations at no cost to the manufacturer, but at great expense to the taxpayers. Hundreds of millions of dollars were given away.
It would be a major imprudence, in Sen. Shelby’s view, to use taxpayers’ money to help Detroit, but it was no doubt a highly prudent investment in the future of Alabama to set Toyota up with some free roads in order to get the jobs.
In fairness it must be said that if Alabama had not, then Tennessee, South Carolina and Michigan too would have happily done so. It’s a buyer’s market when you are looking for a location for a few hundred jobs.
Senator Shelby would be happy to see the Big 3 go under. He’s betting that will just mean more manufacturing jobs for his state, while the taxpayers of all 50 states will bear the cost of supporting hundreds of thousands of displaced workers, and their families, in the Midwest.