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Hong Kong versus Detroit

The Whited Sepulchre brings us the following:

Hong Kong vs. Detroit.

hong kong with spotlights

ruins of detroit street view

NOW, to be ‘fair’, I’m certain there are parts of Hong Kong that are desolate, just like there are parts of Detroit that are nice.

And Hong Kong is a ‘free marketplace’ within the structure of a communist government!  What Detroit should have been…

[The] per capita tax burden on City residents is the highest in Michigan. This tax burden is particularly severe because it is imposed on a population that has relatively low levels of per capita income.

The City’s income tax… is the highest in Michigan.

Detroit residents pay the highest total property tax rates (inclusive of property taxes paid to all overlapping jurisdictions; e.g., the City, the State, Wayne County) of those paid by residents of Michigan cities having a population over 50,000.

Detroit is the only city in Michigan that levies an excise tax on utility users (at a rate of 5%)

Here’s a Canadian writer lamenting the high sales tax in The Frozen Tundra, as compared to that of Hong Kong.  (50 years ago, Hong Kong was a 3rd world slum, but was later set up to have the smallest government possible.)   emphasis Guffaw

“I did a little calculation yesterday,” says Stuart Iliffe, a Canadian working in Hong Kong as chief financial officer of publishing house PPP Co. Ltd.

“If I earned $100,000 [all figures Canadian unless noted] in Canada, after tax I would keep $54,000. If I earned $100,000 in Hong Kong, and made use of the married man’s tax allowance, I would keep $90,100.”“Hong Kong keeps it very simple. There’s no capital gains tax, there’s no dividend tax, there’s no tax on interest, and you are only taxed on income earned in Hong Kong – not overseas. The system here makes people more entrepreneurial. Maximum personal tax is 15 per cent, but there are lots of allowances to get it lower, and corporate tax is set at 16.5 per cent – so people are not spending half their time trying to avoid or evade. You have money in your pocket and you do things with it. You invest. You buy shares or you start second businesses,” he says.

Ayesha Lau, partner in charge of Hong Kong tax at KPMG China, broadly agrees with Mr. Iliffe, but takes the view that low and simple taxation is one among a number of factors that make the city competitive. “Others are the rule of law, respect for private property, freedom from corruption in the business environment, efficient government, the free flow of capital – we have no exchange controls – protection of intellectual property rights, and the strategic location as a SAR which is part of China,” she says.

You need to be able to make a profit before you pay tax, so the entrepreneurial culture is not driven by tax alone.”


Go and read the whole thing.  And lament for the ever-increasing intrusive, overtaxing government that killed American Industry.

How sad is it that we were ‘handed our economic hats’ by a communist government!


We have met the enemy and he is us.- Pogo

About guffaw1952

I'm a child of the 50's. libertarian, now medically-retired. I've been a certified firearms trainer, a private investigator, and worked for a major credit card company for almost 22 years. I am a proud NRA Life Member. I am a limited-government, free-market capitalist, who believes in the U.S. Constitution and the Rule of Law.


4 thoughts on “Hong Kong versus Detroit

  1. Given the choice, I’d rather live in Detroit.
    And yes, there are nice places in Detroit, some of my husband’s relatives live there.

    Hong Kong is one of the most disgusting places I have ever been, personally.
    The air is so polluted, you cannot see the landscape at all. It’s a mountainous (if you loosely define “mountains”) island, but you’d never know it to be there. All you can see is clouds of pollution.
    Wearing face masks is very common, just to be able to breath while outside. Rich or poor, they all have to breathe the same air.

    If that’s their capitalist paradise, they can keep it!

    Posted by Tomi | August 6, 2013, 8:03 am
  2. “… when you see that in order to produce, you need to obtain permission from men who produce nothing …”

    Ayn Rand continues to nail all that is wrong with Big Government here in these United States.

    Posted by Rev. Paul | August 6, 2013, 8:30 am

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