James Pethokoukis

AEIIs America worrying too much about China's rise? Recall the 2010 “Chinese Professor” television commercial from Citizens Against Government Waste. It depicted a futuristic Beijing classroom where students hear a triumphalist lecture on American decline. Despite (or maybe because of) its questionable economic substance, the ad really struck a nerve. (It currently has some 3 million YouTube views). At the time, writer James Fallows called it the “first spot from this campaign season you can imagine people actually remembering a decade from now.” And I think he was right about that, probably because “Chinese Professor” tapped into both pre-Trumpian concerns America [...]
Fri, Jan 18, 2019
Source: James Pethokoukis Category: JAMES PETHOKOUKIS
AEITaking another look at the trade-offs from raising top tax rates by a lot While some politicians think raising the top marginal tax rate to 70 percent comes with no downside, economists are less sure as the above UChicago survey shows. Some analytical color in the comment section offers further insights. This from UChicago's Austan Goolsbee, a former Obama White House economist: “Revenue, yes, but with lots of [deadweight loss].” And Stanford's Robert Hall: “I think it would raise more revenue but would reduce output.” Many economists who think wealthier Americans should pay more taxes wouldn't first turn to cranking up the [...]
Thu, Jan 17, 2019
Source: James Pethokoukis Category: JAMES PETHOKOUKIS
AEIWorried about climate change? A ‘Green New Deal' isn't the only option Difficult to imagine high-profile advocacy is less likely to alter a debate than this: Four former Federal Reserve chairs are calling for a US carbon tax ASAP to address the risks of climate change. As the Financial Times described the effort: “Janet Yellen, Ben Bernanke, Alan Greenspan and Paul Volcker proposed an emissions tax that would be used to pay lump-sum cash rebates to US citizens.” And this from the statement, published in The Wall Street Journal: “The council proposes an initial levy of $40 per ton of emissions, [...]
Thu, Jan 17, 2019
Source: James Pethokoukis Category: JAMES PETHOKOUKIS
AEIWe shouldn't hand-wave away the economic risk from much higher tax rates Recent comments by new House member Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a New York Democrat, has reactivated or at least reenergized debate about whether top US tax rates are too low. And it's my sense that this debate comes at a time when many on the left seem to be suggesting that tax rates don't much matter, certainly not in the sense of promoting economic growth. That right-wing argument, according to this line of thinking, is just some scammy attempt to justify lower taxes for rich people who give money to conservatives [...]
Tue, Jan 15, 2019
Source: James Pethokoukis Category: JAMES PETHOKOUKIS
AEIWho lost China (again)?: A long-read Q&A with Zack Cooper As China continues to become economically and militarily dominant there is a tendency in Washington to act as though it all could have been prevented. But could China have been stopped? On this episode, China specialist and AEI fellow Zack Cooper walks us through how and why China failed to be incorporated into the international order as well as the futility of Trump's tariff regime in changing Chinese behavior today. Zack Cooper is a research fellow here at AEI, where he studies US defense strategy in Asia and US-China competition. What follows [...]
Mon, Jan 14, 2019
Source: James Pethokoukis Category: JAMES PETHOKOUKIS
AEISome Galaxy Brain thinking on the government shutdown and its economic impact The easy — though not entirely wrong — analysis of the ongoing government shutdown is that it's a political event rather than a market or economic event. For Republicans and Democrats, the shutdown is the ultimate cage match with big potential electoral and policy implications. As The Washington Post characterizes the standoff: “[President Trump] has to win. His entire reputation, his entire relationship with the base, it's all a function of being committed on big things and not backing down. If he backs down on this, Pelosi will be [...]
Mon, Jan 14, 2019
Source: James Pethokoukis Category: JAMES PETHOKOUKIS
AEIRather than bemoaning globalization, we should be celebrating it Senator Marco Rubio makes an interesting point when he writes in The Atlantic: “For too long, government and business leaders alike have stood back and endorsed supposedly unstoppable global forces that have made life harder for working Americans.” The two “global forces” that pop into mind are technology and globalization. Now since much of the current debate about working-class woes has centered around globalization — both trade and immigration — let's focus on that. Globalization is certainly stoppable. The first “global century” of growing connectedness among the world's economies was stopped by World [...]
Fri, Jan 11, 2019
Source: James Pethokoukis Category: JAMES PETHOKOUKIS
AEI5 questions for William Kerr on high-skill immigration and H-1B visa reform Nations compete across many dimensions, but in the coming years perhaps no competition will be as fierce or as important as the one for talent. My guest on this episode, Harvard Business School Professor William Kerr, explains why global talent has been so important and how the US might continue to compete for these talented few in his new book, “The Gift of Global Talent: How Migration Shapes Business, Economy, & Society.” William Kerr is Professor at Harvard Business School and Co-Director of the school's Managing the Future of Work [...]
Fri, Jan 11, 2019
Source: James Pethokoukis Category: JAMES PETHOKOUKIS
AEIHow the US can compete for global talent: A long-read Q&A with William Kerr Nations compete across many dimensions, but in the coming years perhaps no competition will be as fierce or as important as the one for talent. My guest on this episode, Harvard Business School Professor William Kerr, explains why global talent has been so important and how the US might continue to compete for these talented few in his new book, “The Gift of Global Talent: How Migration Shapes Business, Economy, & Society.” William Kerr is Professor at Harvard Business School and Co-Director of the school's Managing the Future [...]
Wed, Jan 09, 2019
Source: James Pethokoukis Category: JAMES PETHOKOUKIS
AEIBefore we consider cranking up tax rates, let's have a smart debate It now seems there's going to be a national conversation about whether top federal tax rates should be dramatically higher. And for that you can partially credit first-term House member Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez — as well as the extreme media attention given to her every policy utterance. But only partial credit here. At a time of a) high national debt that's heading even higher, and b) increased inequality — including the creation of some truly massive personal fortunes — it's a discussion that was probably inevitable. And here's hoping that discussion [...]
Mon, Jan 07, 2019
Source: James Pethokoukis Category: JAMES PETHOKOUKIS