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AEIIndividual mandate repeal is a misguided tax cut, not a tax increase The tax bill approved by the Senate Finance Committee last week would repeal the tax (often called the “individual mandate”) that the Affordable Care Act imposes on individuals who do not have health insurance. Some observers are describing the repeal of the mandate as a tax increase. In reality, the repeal is a tax cut, though not a sensible one. Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch arrives for the the markup the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act” on Capitol Hill in Washington, US, November 13, 2017. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque Why would anyone Read More >>
Wed, Nov 22, 2017
Source: Public Policy Blog of the American Enterprise Institute Category: ETHICS AND PUBLIC POLICY CENTER
net neutrality
AEIFive reasons to be thankful the FCC is restoring internet freedom Rumor has it that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will release its draft Restoring Internet Freedom Order today, the day before Thanksgiving. If the draft order lives up to its advance billing, it will effectively restore the liberal regulatory framework that allowed our country's online ecosystem to flourish from 1990 (approximately when the world wide web was launched) until late 2014, when the Obama FCC, led by then chairman Tom Wheeler, decided that utility-style regulation would be better. Via REUTERS Keeping with the holiday season, I would like to describe at least Read More >>
Wed, Nov 22, 2017
Source: Public Policy Blog of the American Enterprise Institute Category: ETHICS AND PUBLIC POLICY CENTER
AEITuesday evening links 1. Chart of the Day (above) displays some of the findings of Professors Thomas Hirschl (Cornell) and Mark Rank (Washington University) from their research paper “The Life Course Dynamics of Affluence,” which I featured a few days ago on CD, see here. As Mark Rank wrote in a 2015 New York Times article about his research with Thomas Hirschl, “Rather than being a place of static, income-based social tiers, America is a place where a large majority of people will experience either wealth or poverty — or both — during their lifetimes.” The chart above is based the Read More >>
Tue, Nov 21, 2017
Source: Public Policy Blog of the American Enterprise Institute Category: ETHICS AND PUBLIC POLICY CENTER
German Chancellor Angela Merkel's waning political star comes at an awkward time for the European project of greater political and economic integration. The Brexit negotiations are now reaching a crucial stage; French President Emmanuel Macron sorely needs a serious German partner to push forward his European reform agenda; and potentially destabilizing Italian parliamentary elections are scheduled to take place in March next year. Should the curtain now indeed be falling on Merkel's 12 years as German chancellor, her steady hand and decisive leadership in defusing earlier European economic crises will surely be missed as Europe tries to navigate its way through the Read More >>
Tue, Nov 21, 2017
Source: Marc Thiessen Category: MARC THIESSEN
If there is one thing about the Eurozone on which most economists can agree, it is that Italy's economic performance since the Euro's 1999 launch has been appalling. If there is another thing on which consensus can be found, it is that an over-indebted Italian economy needs a coherent and reform-minded government to get the country quickly onto a higher economic growth path. Sadly, in the run up to next year's Italian parliamentary elections, which is most likely to take place in March 2018, the prospects do not appear to be promising that Italy will get itself such a government. This Read More >>
Tue, Nov 21, 2017
Source: Marc Thiessen Category: MARC THIESSEN
AEIDefining kleptocracy: A first step toward victory Washington is abuzz with talk of “kleptocracy.” Some institutions are working on the national security implications of “rule by theft” and some have identified it as the top threat of the 21st Century — the root of global corruption, instability, and terrorism. Others believe that Western democracies are becoming kleptocratic, contributing to internal threats. But the term needs proper context before policymakers can craft appropriate responses to the challenges it poses. Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin attend a group photo session of Emerging Market and Developing Countries meeting during the BRICS Read More >>
Tue, Nov 21, 2017
Source: Public Policy Blog of the American Enterprise Institute Category: ETHICS AND PUBLIC POLICY CENTER
The passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act returned a good deal of K-12 authority from Uncle Sam back to the states. After 15 years of accelerating federal energy – thanks to the No Child Left Behind Act, Race to the Top and a number of Obama-era regulations and guidance letters – the 2015 law aimed to enable state-level policymakers to independently make key decisions about standards, assessments, school ratings, interventions and more. Given the old saying that “personnel is policy,” we should have anticipated two different things occurring as power shifted from inside the Beltway to state capitals – one Read More >>
Tue, Nov 21, 2017
Source: Marc Thiessen Category: MARC THIESSEN
AEIHow much economic growth can tax reform deliver? Part III This blog is Part III in a three-part blog series discussing how much of an impact tax reform can have on economic growth. Find Part I, authored by Alan Viard, here. Find Part II, authored by Stan Veuger, here. I believe that the current US tax code imposes drag on US economic growth and alternatives to the current system could result in an increase in the capital stock, a boost in worker productivity, and thus an increase in wages. This positive economic result would occur slowly over time as new investment is Read More >>
Tue, Nov 21, 2017
Source: Public Policy Blog of the American Enterprise Institute Category: ETHICS AND PUBLIC POLICY CENTER
AEIAmerica's food assistance programs and hunger As preparation for another Thanksgiving begins, it is difficult to think about the families who struggle to afford food. According to the 2016 Food Security Survey, 12.3% of households (or 15.6 million) were food insecure at some point in 2016 and 4.9% (6.1 million) had very low food security. Via Twenty20 At the same time, the federal government spends billions of dollars providing food assistance to low-income families each year. The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) provided $66 billion in food benefits in 2016 to over 44 million people in the average month. Add to that another Read More >>
Tue, Nov 21, 2017
Source: Public Policy Blog of the American Enterprise Institute Category: ETHICS AND PUBLIC POLICY CENTER
AEICan US economic growth rise again? A new study gives reason for optimism In the magisterial The Rise and Fall of American Growth, Northwestern University economist Robert Gordon describes a “special century” of fast productivity growth from roughly 1870 to 1970. But the apogee of that period was really the 1920–1970 “golden age” period when the economy really felt the impact of the Second Industrial Revolution of the second half of the 19th and early 20th century. Via Twenty20. The second IR was a time that produced important and “unrepeatable” inventions flowing from the following five​ technology clusters: electrification, the internal combustion engine, Read More >>
Tue, Nov 21, 2017
Source: James Pethokoukis Category: JAMES PETHOKOUKIS
AEICan US economic growth rise again? A new study gives reason for optimism In the magisterial The Rise and Fall of American Growth, Northwestern University economist Robert Gordon describes a “special century” of fast productivity growth from roughly 1870 to 1970. But the apogee of that period was really the 1920–1970 “golden age” period when the economy really felt the impact of the Second Industrial Revolution of the second half of the 19th and early 20th century. Via Twenty20. The second IR was a time that produced important and “unrepeatable” inventions flowing from the following five​ technology clusters: electrification, the internal combustion engine, Read More >>
Tue, Nov 21, 2017
Source: Public Policy Blog of the American Enterprise Institute Category: ETHICS AND PUBLIC POLICY CENTER
It is said that generals fight the last war all too often. One has to wonder whether the same might be said of the Federal Reserve in its effort to avert a future economic and financial crisis. U.S. President Donald Trump looks on as Jerome Powell, his nominee to become chairman of the U.S. Federal Reserve, speaks at the White House in Washington, U.S., November 2, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria Despite the many warning signs of dangerous financial market vulnerabilities, and the knowledge that the next economic crisis is all too likely to take a different form than the last crisis, the Fed Read More >>
Tue, Nov 21, 2017
Source: Marc Thiessen Category: MARC THIESSEN
AEIHow much economic growth can tax reform deliver? The potential economic benefits of tax reform have been vigorously debated in recent months, with some supporters claiming that reform would raise the annual growth rate of the economy to 3%, 4%, or even higher. Although those claims are misplaced and exaggerated, a well-designed tax reform could deliver significant economic benefits. (L-R) Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Sen. Orrin Hatch, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and Director of the National Economic Council Gary Cohn introduce the Republican tax reform plan at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, U.S., November 9, 2017. REUTERS/Aaron P. Bernstein Predicting a specific Read More >>
Tue, Nov 21, 2017
Source: Public Policy Blog of the American Enterprise Institute Category: ETHICS AND PUBLIC POLICY CENTER
Chicago's mayor Rahm Emanuel proposed a tax hike on ride-sharing services, which would hurt companies like Uber and Lyft. Should the Windy City tax successful startups in order to help fund their public transportation system? AEI's James Pethokoukis gives his take. Read More >>
Tue, Nov 21, 2017
Source: Marc Thiessen Category: MARC THIESSEN
turkey
AEIGiving thanks for kaleidoscopic market energy, the invisible hand of strangers (‘market benefactors') and no turkey czars This Thanksgiving post has been an annual tradition at CD and I feature a slightly revised version again this year! Like in previous years, most of you probably didn't call your local supermarket ahead of time and order a Thanksgiving turkey this year. Why not? Because you automatically assumed that a turkey would be there when you showed up, and it probably was there when you appeared “unannounced” at your local grocery store and selected your Thanksgiving bird. Or it will be there today or Read More >>
Tue, Nov 21, 2017
Source: Public Policy Blog of the American Enterprise Institute Category: ETHICS AND PUBLIC POLICY CENTER
thanksgiving family dinner
Dear conservative reader, I'm sorry about Thanksgiving 2013. I got carried away. The Obama administration and seemingly every liberal website were putting out all these Guides To Explaining the Affordable Care Act to Your Conservative Uncle, and so I jumped in the game. I offered you the “Thanksgiving guide to making conservative arguments liberals can understand.” It seemed like a good idea. You could sow some doubt about regulation by pointing out the food regs that Michael Pollan opposes. You could critique Social Security by pointing out its regressive redistribution. Related reading:The Thanksgiving guide to making conservative arguments liberals can understand But once you mentioned Read More >>
Tue, Nov 21, 2017
Source: Marc Thiessen Category: MARC THIESSEN
Hollywood copyrights
AEIHollywood CGI copyrights under fire in new technology lawsuit Could computer-generated characters belong to the creators of the underlying software and not to the studios that used it to generate the actual characters? That specter now haunts Hollywood, where computer generated imagery (CGI) has come to play an increasingly important role in blockbuster movies, as a new lawsuit raises complex issues of technology, creativity, and intellectual property. Via Twenty20 In July, a Silicon Valley company called Rearden LLC filed suit in federal court in San Francisco against Disney, Paramount, and 20th Century Fox, alleging that they used stolen technology — Rearden's patented and proprietary Read More >>
Tue, Nov 21, 2017
Source: Public Policy Blog of the American Enterprise Institute Category: ETHICS AND PUBLIC POLICY CENTER
In this episode of the “New Skills Marketplace” podcast, Andy Smarick (AEI) and John Bailey (AEI) sit down with Tamar Jacoby from Opportunity America to talk about workforce development. http://media.blubrry.com/aeipodcastchannel/p/media.blubrry.com/aeieventspod/p/content.blubrry.com/aeieventspod/New_Skills_Marketplace_Tamar_Jacoby_on_workforce_development_112117.mp3Podcast (aei-podcast-channel): Download Tamar begins by raising a number of questions about proposed solutions to the skills gap [3:57]. She then focuses specifically on apprenticeships [6:11]. Next, Tamar responds to concerns about job reductions due to automation and drops in economic mobility [10:26]. Finally, she identifies the main questions that policymakers, employers, and educational institutions need to answer to in order make meaningful changes to workforce training [19:20] and offers advice to Read More >>
Tue, Nov 21, 2017
Source: Marc Thiessen Category: MARC THIESSEN
President Trump's critics are arguing that GOP calls for the Justice Department to investigate Hillary Clinton and Democrats' ties to Russia are an effort to distract from the real Russia investigation, into potential Trump-Russia collusion. No, they are not. Ever since Watergate, the mantra of all major corruption investigations has been to “follow the money.” Well, Americans of all political stripes should be outraged by the fact that both Democrats and Republicans in Washington are up to their eyeballs in Kremlin cash. Russian money found its way into the pockets of not only Trump advisers like Paul Manafort and Rick Gates — Read More >>
Mon, Nov 20, 2017
Source: Marc Thiessen Category: MARC THIESSEN