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Search Results for '"Veronique de Rugy"'

One of the worst examples of Washington cronyism is the Export-Import Bank, which has provided subsidies for big companies that sell to foreign buyers. Corrupt firms such as Boeing and General Electric argue that they need help from the Ex-Im Bank in order make those sales. Is that true? Interestingly, we had a real-world test […]

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I admired the Tea Party because it was made up of people who were upset by the bipartisan waste and corruption of Washington. And I think they even had a positive – albeit only temporary – effect. But the “Yellow Vest” protesters in France, as I explain in this interview, are much less coherent. Needless […]

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I have this quaint notion that the Constitution guarantees economic liberty by limiting the power of Washington. Needless to say, parental leave is not one of the enumerated powers in Article 1, Section 8. Sadly, many people (include the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court) don’t share my view. So let’s set aside that objection […]

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Since I’m a proponent of tax reform, I don’t like special favors in the tax code. Deductions, exemptions, credits, exclusions, and other preferences are back-door forms of cronyism and government intervention. Indeed, they basically exist to lure people into making decisions that otherwise aren’t economically rational. These distortionary provisions help to explain why we have […]

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As a fiscal policy wonk, I’ve come across depressing examples of counterproductive tax provisions (health benefits exclusion, ethanol credits) and spending programs (the entire HUD budget, OECD subsidies). But the folks who work on regulatory policy may get exposed to the most inane government policies (Fannie-Freddie mandate, EEOC rulings). For example, consider how the government […]

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I don’t want to write about Trump’s new NAFTA deal (which now has the clunky acronym of USMCA), largely because not much changed since the partial deal with Mexico was unveiled. Also, it’s hard to get too worked up about the new agreement since it largely tinkers with the status quo. And since I was […]

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I wrote a few days ago about Obama’s weak track record on the economy and included the relevant part of a Fox Business interview. In that same interview, I also talked about Trump’s performance. As you might expect, I said nice things about tax reform and regulatory relief, but was rather alarmist about his protectionism. […]

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By starting a trade war, President Trump is playing with matches in a gunpowder factory. Other nations are retaliating, creating the risk of escalating tit-for-tat protectionism. But is that really what’s happening? Is it possible that the President instead is playing hardball to get other nations (who generally have more trade barriers than America) to […]

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When I give speeches about public policy issues, people sometimes ask about the impact of various policies on economic growth. What will happen to growth if the death tax is repealed? How much will GDP be hurt by Trump’s protectionism? If HUD is abolished, will there be a growth dividend? I always respond with a […]

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Writing a column every day can sometimes be a challenge, in part because of logistics (I have to travel a lot, which can make things complicated), but also because I want to make sure I’m sharing interesting and relevant information. My task, however, is very easy on certain days. When Economic Freedom of the World […]

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On April 17, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in South Dakota v. Wayfair, Inc., a case dealing with whether states should have the power to levy taxes on companies in other states. Most observers see this issue as a fight over taxing the Internet, taxing online sales, or a battle between Main Street merchants […]

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Back in 2015, I wrote some columns about policy differences with folks who normally would be considered allies. In Part I, I defended the flat tax, which had been criticized by Reihan Salam In Part II, I explained why I thought a comprehensive fiscal package from the American Enterprise Institute was too timid. In Part […]

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On the one-year anniversary of his inauguration, I graded Trump’s overall record on economic policy and specifically observed that his trade rhetoric was worse than his trade policy. But I added a caveat about the North American Free Trade Agreement. …he’s been doing a lot of saber-rattling, but fortunately not drawing too much blood. That being […]

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When Ronald Reagan slashed tax rates in America in the 1980s, the obvious direct effect was more prosperity in America. But the under-appreciated indirect effect of Reaganomics was that it helped generate more prosperity elsewhere in the world. Not because Americans had higher income and could buy more products from home and abroad (though that […]

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I have a fantasy of junking the entire corrupt tax system and adopting a simple and fair flat tax. I have an even bigger fantasy of shrinking the size and scope of the federal government to what America’s Founders intended, in which case Washington wouldn’t need any broad-based tax. But in the real world, where […]

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I’ve called for the abolition of the Department of Transportation. On more than one occasion. So I was very excited to see this new video about infrastructure from Johan Norberg. Very well put. As Johan says (channeling Bastiat), we should remember that jobs are destroyed when money is taken out of the private sector to […]

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I’m in Las Vegas for FreedomFest, which is sort of like summer camp for libertarians, small-government conservatives, and others who don’t like a bloated and intrusive state. I’ll be talking about tax reform, the sharing economy, and strategies to constrain big government. One of the features of this 10th-anniversary meeting of FreedomFest is that the […]

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My crusade against the border-adjustable tax (BAT) continues. In a column co-authored with Veronique de Rugy of Mercatus, I explain in today’s Wall Street Journal why Republicans should drop this prospective source of new tax revenue. …this should be an opportune time for major tax cuts to boost American growth and competitiveness. But much of […]

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I focus most of my ire on the federal government because bad policy from Washington is the biggest threat to our nation’s freedom and prosperity. But we also get plenty of bad policy from other levels of government. I periodically focus on the foibles of states such as California, Illinois, and New York. Today, though, […]

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I’ve shared several surveys that people can take to determine whether they are libertarian. Now the good folks from FreedomFest are taking this to the next level by conducting a survey to determine the “50 Most Influential Libertarians.” I invite everyone to participate by clicking here, especially since filling out the survey gives you a […]

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I’ve written many times that Washington is both a corrupt city and a corrupting city. My point is that decent people go into government and all too often wind up losing their ethical values as they learn to “play the game.” I often joke that these are people who start out thinking Washington is a […]

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The libertarian approach to crime is both simple and sensible. First, only activities that harm other people should be against the law. So get rid of laws against drugs, gambling, cash deposits, and other victimless crimes. Second, make sure that government behaves properly and respects constitutional rights while investigating and prosecuting criminality. Third, impose appropriate […]

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Time for a boring and wonky discussion about taxes, capital formation, and growth. We’ll start with the uncontroversial proposition that saving and investment is a key driver of long-run growth. Simply stated, employees can produce more (and therefore earn more) when they work with better machines, equipment, and technology (i.e., the stock of capital). But […]

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I have a very consistent view of victimless crimes. I don’t approve of drugs and I’ve never used drugs, but I think the social harm of prohibition is greater than the social harm of legalization. I don’t particularly like alcohol and I am almost a teetotaler, but I’m glad there’s now a consensus that the […]

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It’s easy to define and/or understand most statist policies. We know that a tax increase is when politicians take (or, given the Laffer Curve, try to take) more of your money based on your decisions to work, save, shop, or invest. We know that protectionism is when politicians use taxes and other policies to restrict […]

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One of the big challenges for libertarians is that we understand “public choice theory.” In other words, we know that people attracted to government will have both the incentive and the power to do bad things, so our quandary is how to give government the authority to provide so-called public goods without sowing the seeds […]

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I’ve previously written about the bizarre attack that the European Commission has launched against Ireland’s tax policy. The bureaucrats in Brussels have concocted a strange theory that Ireland’s pro-growth tax system provides “state aid” to companies like Apple (in other words, if you tax at a low rate, that’s somehow akin to giving handouts to […]

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I don’t mind being polemical on occasion, but I generally don’t accuse my opponents of being “socialists.” American leftists generally focus on redistribution and regulatory intervention and socialism technically means that the government directly owns, operates, and controls various sectors of the economy (think, for example, of the difference between Obamacare and the U.K.’s system, […]

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The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) arguably is the worst feature of the internal revenue code. It’s an odious example of fiscal imperialism that is based on a very bad policy agenda. But there is something even worse, a Multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters that has existed for decades but […]

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In hopes of learning some lessons, let’s take a tour through the dank sewer of government, the place where malice is rewarded and malfeasance is a stepping stone to success. Writing for the Washington Post, Professor Stephen Medvic argues that America’s political system is mostly clean. …there is very little political corruption in the United […]

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