For too long the conventional wisdom in Washington has held that the United States is not in competition with other nations. The neoclassical economists that dominate the debate argue that corporate tax policy reform should simply “level the playing field” and then suddenly the U.S. will thrive in the global economy. Yet the approach to tax policy would actually make our competitiveness worse. The states understand this; Washington does not. The economic policies of states are based upon the fact that a competitive corporate tax rate, particularly on “traded firms” is essential. Maybe it is time to send the DC economists for one-year stints in state government to see how the real world works.