This blog has been warning about the danger of a value-added tax. We’ve cited the salivating comments of Speaker Pelosi. We’ve noted the favorable comments by Obama insiders like the former Co-Chairman of his transition team. We know the battle is coming. Now we need to fight. This newly-released video from the Center for Freedom and Prosperity provides the data showing that this is a do-or-die fight. If we lose, there is no hope of stopping statism. Blocking a VAT is not a sufficient condition to protect America from becoming a French-style welfare state, but it is a necessary condition.
Posts Tagged ‘Video’
Posted in Big Government, Center for Freedom and Prosperity, Economics, Fiscal Policy, Government Spending, Pelosi, Spending, Tax Competition, Taxation, Value-Added Tax, VAT, Video, tagged Big Government, Obama, Pelosi, Tax, Taxation, Value-Added Tax, VAT, Video on October 14, 2009 | 151 Comments »
Posted in Big Government, Center for Freedom and Prosperity, Economics, Fiscal Policy, Government stupidity, Politicians, Politics, Spending, Uncategorized, Video, tagged Big Government, Bureaucracy, Bureaucrats, Bush, Competitiveness, Congress, Economics, Fiscal Policy, Free Markets, Government Spending, Government stupidity, Keynesian, Keynesianism, Liberty, Obama, Politicians, Statism, stimulus, Taxation, Video on September 15, 2009 | 129 Comments »
The burden of government spending has skyrocketed during the Bush-Obama years. Many politicians claim that all this new spending represents necessary “investments” to boost economic growth. But as this new video explains, both cross-country comparisons and empirical analysis suggest government is far too big – not only in Europe, but also in America.
This is the second of a two-part series. The first installment, which focuses on eight theoretical reasons why excessive government undermines growth, can be viewed here.
Posted in Cato Institute, Competitiveness, Economics, Fiscal Policy, Sovereignty, Tax Haven, Taxation, Video, tagged Cato Institute, Competitiveness, Economics, Fiscal Policy, Free Markets, Liberty, Sovereignty, Tax Haven, Taxation, Video on July 25, 2009 | 10 Comments »
I’ve heard that “Cato U” is the most popular Cato Institute public program, so I’m looking forward to my first visit. I’ll be speaking on “Leviathan on a Diet: Tax Competition and Restraints on State Power.”
For those of you who won’t be there, this eight-minute video is a condensed version of my remarks. And if you’re too lazy to watch the video, my message is that forcing governments to compete with each other is the world’s most powerful force for freedom.
Politicians exaggerate as a routine matter and have well-deserved reputations for stretching the truth. But when they repeatedly make assertions that they (or their aides) know to be false, they surely deserve to be criticized. That is the purpose of my new video. Entitled “President Obama’s Dishonest Demagoguery on So-Called Tax Havens,” the four-minute presentation looks at the two sound bites that the President uses to demonize low-tax jurisdictions.
Posted in Class warfare, Competitiveness, Economics, Fiscal Policy, Laffer Curve, Taxation, Uncategorized, Video, tagged Class warfare, Competitiveness, Economics, Fiscal Policy, Taxation, Video on June 15, 2009 | 473 Comments »
The most amazing – or perhaps frightening – part of this video is listening to Obama say he supports higher tax rates even if they damage the economy so much that the government doesn’t collect any additional revenue. Wow.
Please share widely. We need to educate people so they do not get seduced by the politics of hate and envy.
Since everybody outside of Washington already seems to understand that government-run car companies are doomed to fail, I will spare you a dull treatise on why the GM bailout is a bad idea. Instead, how about an advance look at GM’s 2012 top-selling car…
The video is funny, but the joke may be on us. A few of you old timers may remember the Trabant of East Germany. How long before our masters in Washington start forcing us to drive similar pieces of junk?
In theory, the VAT is a relatively non-destructive tax. Like the flat tax and national sales tax, it is a single-rate, “consumption-base” levy. Several people have asked me, then, why I am so vociferously opposed to such a measure. The answer is simple: I do not object to a VAT as a replacement for the current income tax. But that is not a realistic option. Instead, politicians are salivating for a VAT because it is a very efficient way of generating more money to spend. And the last thing I want is to make it easier for politicians to transfer a larger share of national output from the productive sector of the economy to the government. This video compares the flat tax and national sales tax, but it also applies to the VAT.
Some people complain that my youtube videos are too long, and they average only about seven minutes, so it is with some trepidation that I post here a link to my recent speech in Norway. But if you are looking for a thorough explanation of how government intervention caused the financial crisis AND the need to fix fiscal policy by slashing government spending and implementing a flat tax, there are worse ways of spending seventy minutes. A supposed friend already has joked the the first minute, featuring an introduction in Norwegian by the leader of the Progress Party, is the best part of the video. But I’ll let you be the judge.
The U.K.’s Daily Telegraph reports that British banks may turn away any America clients as a result of an Administration proposal to modify the already-onerous Qualified Intermediary rules and make them even worse. This makes life more difficult for overseas Americans, which will compromise the competitiveness of U.S. firms trying to win market share around the world. It also will discourage foreign financial institutions from investing in America since pulling out of the U.S. market is an easy way to get out from under the IRS’s unfair extraterritorial regulatory reach.
British banks and stockbrokers may refuse to take on American clients if new international tax proposals outlined by President Obama are passed. The decision, which would make it hard for Americans in London to open bank accounts and trade shares, is being discussed by executives at Britain’s banks and brokers who say it could become too expensive to service American clients. The proposals, which were unveiled as part of the president’s first budget, are designed to clamp-down on American tax evaders abroad. However bank bosses say they are being asked to take on the task of collecting American taxes at a cost and legal liability that are inexpedient. …One executive at a top UK bank who didn’t want to be named for fear of angering the IRS said: “It’s just about manageable under the current system – and that’s because we’re big. The danger to us is suddenly being hauled over the coals by the IRS for a client that hasn’t paid proper taxes. The audit costs will soar. We’ll have to pay it but I know plenty of smaller players won’t.” The British Bankers Association (BBA) and APCIMS had a meeting with European counterparts 10 days ago to discuss the crisis. A delegation is set to meet the US Treasury’s Internal Revenue Service on 16th June to demand they drop the reforms. …President Obama’s proposals are built on the so-called Qualified Intermediary system which was intended to ensure Americans paid the correct tax wherever they were domiciled. Foreign financial institutions that handle American money have to fill in a US tax form on behalf of the client that has to be audited too.
This story illustrates the powerful liberalizing impact of tax competition. Because of globalization, it is now much easier for jobs and capital to cross national borders. This means nations (like the U.S., unfortunately) that adopt bad policy suffer greater consequences than would have been the case in the past. Nations that reduce the burden of government, by contrast, enjoy even larger benefits. This video explains the process:
Appearing on Larry Kudlow’s show, I comment on California’s profligate fiscal policy, noting that Schwarzenegger is turning California into an American version of France.
For a more detailed explanation of how California’s tax-and-spend policies have harmed the state, see this great new video from Reason TV.
Steve Moore and Art Laffer have an excellent column in today’s Wall Street Journal. They explain that high-tax states drive repel entrepreneurs and investors, leading to a pronounced Laffer Curve effect. Productive people either leave the state or choose to earn and report less taxable income. And because growth is weaker than in low-tax states, there also is a negative impact on lower-income and middle-class people:
Here’s the problem for states that want to pry more money out of the wallets of rich people. It never works because people, investment capital and businesses are mobile: They can leave tax-unfriendly states and move to tax-friendly states. …Updating some research from Richard Vedder of Ohio University, we found that from 1998 to 2007, more than 1,100 people every day including Sundays and holidays moved from the nine highest income-tax states such as California, New Jersey, New York and Ohio and relocated mostly to the nine tax-haven states with no income tax, including Florida, Nevada, New Hampshire and Texas. We also found that over these same years the no-income tax states created 89% more jobs and had 32% faster personal income growth than their high-tax counterparts. …Dozens of academic studies — old and new — have found clear and irrefutable statistical evidence that high state and local taxes repel jobs and businesses. …Examining IRS tax return data by state, E.J. McMahon, a fiscal expert at the Manhattan Institute, measured the impact of large income-tax rate increases on the rich ($200,000 income or more) in Connecticut, which raised its tax rate in 2003 to 5% from 4.5%; in New Jersey, which raised its rate in 2004 to 8.97% from 6.35%; and in New York, which raised its tax rate in 2003 to 7.7% from 6.85%. Over the period 2002-2005, in each of these states the “soak the rich” tax hike was followed by a significant reduction in the number of rich people paying taxes in these states relative to the national average.
Interestingly, the Baltimore Sun last week published an article noting that the soak-the-rich tax imposed last year is backfiring. There are fewer rich people, less taxable income, and lower tax revenue. To be sure, some of this is the result of a nationwide downturn, but the research cited by Moore and Laffer certainly suggest that the state revenue shortfall will continue even after than national economy recovers:
A year ago, Maryland became one of the first states in the nation to create a higher tax bracket for millionaires as part of a broader package of maneuvers intended to help balance the state’s finances and make the tax code more progressive. But as the state comptroller’s office sifts through this year’s returns, it is finding that the number of Marylanders with more than $1 million in taxable income who filed by the end of April has fallen by one-third, to about 2,000. Taxes collected from those returns as of last month have declined by roughly $100 million. …Karen Syrylo, a tax expert with the Maryland Chamber of Commerce, which lobbied against the millionaire bracket, said she has heard from colleagues who are attorneys and accountants that their clients moved out of state to avoid the new tax rate. She said that some Maryland jurisdictions boast some of the highest combined state and local income tax burdens in the country. “Maryland is such a small state, and it is so easy to move a few miles south to Virginia or a few miles north to Pennsylvania,” Syrylo said. “So there are millionaires who are no longer going to be filing Maryland tax returns.”
With President Obama proposing higher tax rates for the entire nation, perhaps this is a good time to remind people about the three-part video series on the Laffer Curve that I narrated. If you have not yet had a chance to watch them, the videos are embedded here for your viewing pleasure:
I had two opportunities earlier this week on CNBC to explain why it is not a good idea to further increase the discriminatory tax on American multinational firms. On Street Signs, hosted by the ever-popular Erin Burnett, I squared off against Christian Weller of the Center for Anti-American Progress (sorry, the temptation to modify their name was too strong). I like Christian, both because we hung out a bit at a conference in Paris years ago, and because he is not shy about stating his desire for bigger government, so it is a straightforward debate. I’m not sure who scored more points, but I hope it was an enlightening discussion.
Later in the day, I appeared on Larry Kudlow’s show and got to cross swords with Robert Reich. Larry is a great guy and is right on all this issues to my knowledge, so hopefully the two of us did a decent job explaining why it’s not a good idea to impose much higher taxes on American companies when their foreign competitors already enjoy a tax advantage. Reich is an effective debater, though, so you’ll have to judge for yourself which side prevailed.
This video (hopefully) makes the case that smaller government is the best way to reduce sleaze in Washington.
The Center for Freedom and Prosperity has taken the footage and powerpoint presentation from my March 23 speech on tax havens and turned it into a two-part video series.
The quality is not as good as the videos we film in studio, but the two videos are a good summary of why tax havens should be applauded, not persecuted.
Based on a theory known as Keynesianism, politicians are resuscitating the notion that more government spending can stimulate an economy. This mini-documentary produced by the Center for Freedom and Prosperity Foundation examines both theory and evidence and finds that allowing politicians to spend more money is not a recipe for better economic performance.