Your argument is strong, and you would score major points in a debate. I welcome you and others making that argument.

But the bottom line is that the governor’s office, the N.C. Department of Commerce, and the vast majority of lawmakers in both chambers of the General Assembly believe North Carolina needs targeted tax incentives — individual deals for individual companies — to bring new jobs to North Carolina.

As Joe points out, those individual deals create loopholes that artificially inflate tax rates for other businesses. That concern has led some long-standing North Carolina businesses to complain that they are subsidizing the new businesses recruited to the state.

Until free-market thinkers can convince the major players within state government that the targeted tax incentives lead to unintended harmful consequences, we’ll not see the types of across-the-board positive changes you advocate.