In an editorial over the weekend, the Fargo Forum made a case for North Dakota offering film incentives.

This was occasioned by the recent work in Fargo on a film based there called “Tankhouse.” The company which owns the Forum (and which also employs me) is an investor in that film.

“North Dakota has the means and the tools to provide meaningful incentives to draw filmmakers to the state,” the editorial concludes. “It merely lacks the vision to make it happen.”

The problem with all economic incentive policies is that they’ve become an arms race. Whether it’s incentives for real estate development, business start-ups, or filming, the argument is always that other states and communities are offering incentives. If we don’t, we’ll supposedly be left behind.

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