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This book is a collection of six papers on tax policy. Each of these papers is followed by a chapter responding to the paper. All are informative and interesting, but you and I are likely to find some more compelling than others. You also have to realize that some papers are prescribing that if you are going to do X or Y already then here is something you should consider. They are not necessarily advocating that X or Y is the thing to do.
For example, the first chapter by Gilbert Metcalf and its response by Roberton Williams III show why dealing with environmental issues through taxing mechanisms is preferable to direct regulation. While I find the argument that we need to do more because we are doing less than European countries completely and utterly unpersuasive, I think their points are interesting. Nevertheless, you should also beware that just because they talk about cap and trade that in no way implies that the cap and trade bill in congress is related to this proposal in any way more direct than the phonemes in the names.
The second paper and response is about taxes related to labor and that they have far more impact on workers than many suppose. Workers do indeed enter and leave the workforce based on taxes and this is very true of women who also have to run a household.
The third paper looks at taxable income elasticity and how taxes cause people, especially rich people the taxes are generally aimed at, to adjust their income to avoid the taxes.
The fourth paper looks at providing tax cuts that are financed by deficits (government borrowing). They point out that doing so negatively affects future generations of taxpayers.
The fifth paper looks at the increased dividends that were paid when dividend tax rates were cut in 2003.Read more ›
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Taxes are at the forefront of politics always, but now they are perhaps more than ever. "Tax Policy: Lessons from the 2000s" examines the mostly over decade of 2000 to 2010, what economists have learned from the tax policies of the Bush Administration, and how the Obama administration can learn much from the mistakes and triumphs of Obama's predecessor. Taxes affect more than what people pay to the government - they can determine the very success of an economy. "Tax Policy: Lessons from the 2000s" is a fine addition to any economic studies collection.
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