So wrong, only an intellectual could believe it

I love it when public policy eggheads produce studies that are so obviously at odds with reality. 

Last week, the Arizona Republic printed the results from a ridiculous study on state economic performance.  The misleadingly named Corporation for Enterprise Development claims the bad states are those with a fast growing population, rising personal income and a very low unemployment rate.  Huh?  If that is bad, how does this study define good?  Surprise surprise, its defined as high levels of government spending!

Bob Robb makes some excellent points:

A useful check on the validity of such studies is to see whether those scoring well on them actually have superior economic performances.

The following states got A’s on the scorecard: Hawaii, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, Vermont, Wisconsin and Wyoming. According to the most recent five years of data available on the Bureau of Economic Analysis’ interactive tables (2000-2005), the A states collectively had personal income growth that lagged behind the national average. Arizona’s personal income grew two-thirds faster than the national average.

The A states did have average wage growth that exceeded the national average. But so did Arizona.

The left hates the suggestion that population growth itself means anything about the quality of a community. Nevertheless, if the question is which states are doing a better job of creating opportunity, surely people can judge that better for themselves than think tanks of either the left or the right. And presumably they go to places they perceive offer greater opportunity.

Over the same five-year period, the A states on CFED’s scorecard had a population growth less than half the national average. Arizona grew three times faster than the national average.

Perhaps the CFED scorecard measures something. Opportunity ain’t it.

People vote with their feet.  Looking at the demographics, people are fleeing the high tax, big government Democrat states.  They come to where there is opportunity.  That is the pro-growth environments of Nevada, Arizona, Texas, Florida and other parts of red state America.

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