December 17, 2012
I'd Throw in Hawai'i -- we got the flags!
At last a serious proposal to reduce our national debt: Sell Alaska!
I e-mailed Alaska Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell (R) to ask him how he would feel about having his state sold out from under him.
"I can't talk down our value," he replied. "It's a great piece of property. We love this place. Great views."
He proposed that Alaskans themselves try to buy their state. I thought it sounded like an employee buyout; Treadwell said he preferred to think of it as a "citizens' buyout." He said, "I don't think we want to leave the country to help save it, but if it comes to that, I'm sure we'd bid."
Hat-tip: Prof. Mankiw.
Posted by John Kranz at December 17, 2012 1:15 PM
We bought Alaska for two pennies an acre; I don't think Congress has enough left in the Treasury to pay the capital gains tax on the transaction, given the increase in real estate values.
Of course, the Fed could just print more to pay those taxes; they've got a lot of recent practice doing that, I s'pose.
Definitely throw in Hawai'i - the day after the SCOAMF moves into that $35 million retirement home that's being build there for him. And we could sell Puerto Rico, too, while we're at it.
As for the flags? I don't go for the whole change-the-star-count-with-the-state-count deal. I say we go back to thirteen stars in a circle and just stick with it. Besides, do we really want to have to redo the flags every time another state secedes? How will all those eight-cent-an-hour seamstresses in Red China who make our flags possibly keep up with the revisions?