Coming in second place in most contests is not best, but it ain’t all that bad. Some notable exceptions: Wars, Ultimate Fighting, and the latest US News and World Report study of states that raised taxes the highest in 2009. Guess what? California had the second highest per capita tax increase in 2009 (right behind New York) with $312 per person of increased taxes last year.

If that isn’t dismal enough, the study did not take into account taxes disguised as “fee” increases, or regulatory rulings that require people or businesses to incur more costs to comply with some bureaucratic new rule. If these hidden costs were quantified, the per capita tax increases would have been much higher.

Business will ultimately leave for less expensive places to operate, or they will simply be unable to compete and will fail. In 2006, California was host to 23 of the nation’s Fortune 500 companies. Now the count is 19. Those company headquarters and all the related jobs left this state because it’s too costly and difficult to do business here.

Here’s an idea for our politicians: If you want to make a political statement and boycott Arizona, How about starting by no longer exporting our jobs to that business friendly state?

Read more tax articles from Paul’s tax blog