Will Bogus Policy Arguments Swing the Supreme Court?
June 05, 2012
Several dozen organizations filed “friend of the court” briefs for the lawsuit challenging the Affordable Care Act. And virtually none of these briefs are likely to have much impact. But, based on what transpired at oral arguments, one brief appears to have gotten the attention of conservative justices. That is deeply worrisome, because the brief betrays some fundamental misunderstandings of how health care actually works. The brief comes from the American Action Forum, a conservative advocacy group that opposes the law, and has the signature of 101 economists and policy experts.
Dismal Scientists Vs. Credulous Public
January 31, 2012
Take a look at the following statement: "Permanently raising the federal tax rate by one percentage point for those in the top income tax bracket would increase federal tax revenue over the next 10 years." This is a bit like saying if you jump into a swimming pool you'll get wet. When researchers at the University of Chicago's Booth School of Business and Northwestern's Kellogg School of Management presented this statement to a "panel of distinguished economists," 100 percent of them agreed with it.
Nothing Says "Credibility" Like "Laffer Center"
April 18, 2011
Supply-side guru Arthur Laffer has commissioned a study, which he summarizes in today's Wall Street Journal op-ed page, showing the tax code creates massive compliance costs: In a study published last week by the Laffer Center, my colleagues Wayne Winegarden, John Childs and I estimate that these costs alone are a staggering $431 billion annually. This is a cost markup of 30 cents on every dollar paid in taxes. And this is not even a complete accounting of the costs of tax complexity. You may be wondering what this has to do with reducing tax rates for the rich.
July 15, 2010
--Ezra Klein and Megan McArdle debate extending the Bush tax cuts. --Arthur Laffer's laughable argument: unemployment benefits cause unemployment --Why is the RNC defending the Tea Party? --A former IMF economist looks at how income inequality fueled the economic crisis. --Chris Orr criticizes Inception.
I’m Serious: We’re Finally Getting Serious
May 12, 2010
The fiscal policy terrain is shifting radically—and rapidly. Europe’s response to the Greek crisis combines debt and enforced austerity. In the UK, the official Conservative/Liberal Democrat coalition agreement states that “deficit reduction and continuing to ensure economic recovery is the most urgent issue facing Britain” and commits to a “significantly accelerated reduction in the structural deficit over the course of a Parliament” (that is, between now and 2015).
"Now Don't You Let The Government Get A Hold Of My Medicare."
August 04, 2009
Arthur Laffer, Reagan economic advisor, co-author of Proposition 13, and creator of the Laffer Curve: An elderly Louisiana woman, 1994 (cf. The System by Haynes Johnson and David Broder, page 558) [Senator John Breaux] was walking through the New Orleans airport, returning home, when an elderly female constituent approached him. "Senator, Senator," she said, plucking emotionally at his sleeve.
February 14, 2005
Say what you will about George W.
March 31, 1997
Jude Wanniski, who does not bother with the pretense of false modesty, calls himself "the most influential political economist of the last generation." He's right, too. This is a man who single-handedly transformed the discombobulated murmurings of a fringe sect into the central idea of modern economic conservatism. The idea was called supply-side economics, and it was, not very long ago, considered antithetical to every principle of conservative economic theory. Wanniski's pet idea gave Republicans, and conservatives, what they had been lacking for fifty years: a taxing policy that could comp