from The Georgia Public Policy Foundation, Friday Facts

Taxes and regulation

But for Mississippi: About 1.95 million Georgians out of 4,589,611 Georgians (42.5 percent) who filed returns didn’t pay federal taxes in 2010, ranking the state second in the nation in nonpayers, according to the Tax Foundation. That’s two out of every five Georgia filers. Leading the nation was Mississippi, at 44.5 percent of filers not paying taxes.

Tax cuts: Last week Sweden’s Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt announced that the government intends to cut its corporate tax rate, which he called “probably the most damaging tax of all,” down to 22 percent. “That’s welfare state, high tax, big spending Sweden,” points out Tom Giovanetti, president of the Institute for Policy Innovation. “Cutting their corporate tax rate to 22 percent – 13 percentage points lower than the U.S. rate of 35 percent, which is now the highest in the developed world.” This follows a previous cut in Sweden’s corporate rate from 28 percent down to 26.3 percent in 2009.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch: The United States, long considered a champion of economic freedom among large industrial nations, dropped to its lowest position ever in to the Fraser Institute’s 2012 Economic Freedom of the World report. This year, the United States plunged to 18th, a sharp decline from the No. 2 rank it held in 2000. Much of this decline is a result of high spending on the part of the U.S. government, the Fraser Institute reported this week. Hong Kong again topped the rankings, followed by Singapore, New Zealand and Switzerland. Australia and Canada tied for fifth overall among the144 countries and territories. “The United States, like many nations, embraced heavy-handed regulation and extensive over-spending in response to the global recession and debt crises. Consequently, its level of economic freedom has dropped,” the Institute noted.