Dan Mitchell on tax reform.
While the political world is consumed by the various scandals and baggage of the two main presidential candidates, let’s play a game of make-believe. Let’s pretend that politicians aren’t crooks and clowns and instead actually want to make America’s economy more vibrant and productive so the American people can enjoy higher living standards.
What would they do? What should they do?
Those are very big questions with lots of answers, so let’s focus just on the issue of tax policy. If the goal is more growth and prosperity, there are two obvious choices.
To the maximum extent possible, reduce marginal tax rates on productive behavior.
To the maximum extent possible, reduce the tax bias against saving and investment.
Alan Moran’s Climate News.
Wikileaks finds US “charities” like Sandler Foundation, the Sea Change Foundation, the Tilia Fund, the Growald Family Fund and the Flora Family Foundation linked to the Clinton campaign are funding lawfare and other opposition to Australian coal, oil and gas developments. They are usurping Australian sovereignty and recruiting rich local activists to assist them.
Finance ministry officials said that an operation named “24 hours” will monitor about 1.8 million Greeks believed to be declaring an income inconsistent with their lavish lifestyles they enjoy and display on websites. Trifon Alexiades, the deputy finance minister, said: “It may sound ludicrous, but this is a serious effort to crosscheck information about those suspected of concealing wealth.”
Reforming Spanish PM back in charge.
One hundred and seventy lawmakers voted for Rajoy, 111 against, and 68 abstained — all Socialist MPs, in line with the party’s reluctant decision to let its arch-rival govern rather than trigger a third round of elections in the poll-weary country.
Rajoy pledged to plough on with economic policies deeply unpopular with the opposition which blames austerity measures taken in his first term for rising inequality.
“Do no expect me to… damage economic recovery and job creation,” the 61-year-old told lawmakers in a tense pre-vote session, referring to Spain’s return to growth under his watch following an economic downturn.
Around the traps. Mark Steyn’s week. Spiked on line reviews. The Spectator. And the Mannkal Economic Education Foundation, The Institute for Public Affairs IPA. The Centre for Independent Studies. The Sydney Institute. And Mark Steyn, Jo Nova.
Books. Interesting but expensive books. More remainders from Cambridge Uni Press, including Lomborg (ed) on the comparative cost of various global problems like malnutrition, air pollution, illlitaracy and climate change. Climate change comes in as a benefit not a negative in the 20th century. This is an interview to clarify some of his points. WARNING This man was deemed not fit to work at the Uni of Western Australia and elsewhere. So you probably better not read it. Just warning you.
Sport. Indian female shooter withdraws from world titles in Iran due to compulsory hijab rule.
For Heterodox Nerds, the Heterodox Economics Newsletter.
For Straight Nerds. Dan Murphy on the failure of foreign aid to the third world. In the footsteps of Peter Bauer and Stanislav Andreski on Africa and South America. Three important books by Andreski.
The African Predicament: A Study in the Pathology of Modernization (London: M. Joseph, 1968) Tough-minded social criticism informed by the wider context of Andreski’s sociological knowledge. E.g. Andreski notes the conditions of an escalating feedback spiral of distrust which—a few years after the publication of this book—led to Idi Amin’s expulsion of the East Asian ethnic community from Uganda.
Parasitism and Subversion: the Case of Latin America (London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1966)
Social Sciences as Sorcery (London: Andre Deutsch, 1972).
Advertisement. Hayek-related papers. A review of a collection of papers celebrating the 40th birthday of The Road to Serfdom, a 1985 paper on the relevance of the Austrian school of economics to the agenda of deregulation; a review of The Fatal Conceit; an essay on uniting the non-left – inviting conservatives to learn economics and economists to be alert to the cultural agenda; and a review of an important book by Michael Novak on Catholic thought and free enterprise.
His account of the American experience as an adventure of classical (non socialist) liberalism identifies several valuable moral traditions which were called forth by democratic capitalist institutions in the early American colonies. These include civic responsibility, personal economic enterprise, creativity and a special kind of communitarian living.
The most significant achievement of the book is to explain how the common good can be served by the blend of individualism and free-market institutionalism (under the rule of law) that is advocated by von Mises and Hayek.