Today’s Brew 10-11-17

Today’s opinion pages of the Wall Street Journal are worth the price of admission. See Larry Lindsey talk tax reform and see John Tamny talk about debt and the economic future in Puerto Rico.

Tax Reform Will Give Workers a Raise

Expect 3.2% growth, mostly taking the form of higher real wages. It happened in the 1960s.

WSJ, Lindsey 10-11-17

Forgiving Debt Would Hurt Puerto Rico

Wiping out creditors would simply enable more dysfunction.

WSJ, Tamny 10-11-17


Today’s Brew 9-10-17

John Tamny today:

When It Comes To Reduced Taxation, The Numbers Always Add Up

The problem is that policy types from the left and right don’t necessarily see it that way.  Washington Post editorial board member Catherine Rampell sees it as unfortunate and irresponsible that President Trump “is hellbent on passing a massive tax cut for the rich.” And while Trump perhaps doesn’t know why such a tax reduction would be great, Rampell should.  Rampell as mentioned works for the Washington Post, and because she does is likely more aware than most of the modern difficulties experienced by the newspaper industry.  The Post was saved by billionaire Jeff Bezos, Carlos Slim saved the New York Times, and one can only hope that one or a few experimental billionaires will direct their untaxed wealth toward the Los Angeles Times.  If Rampell hasn’t picked up a copy of the latter recently, she would likely find doing so illuminating for a read of what was once the world’s most profitable newspaper revealing what the Post might have become absent Bezos.

Today’s Brew 8-9-17

See John Tamny in today’s Wall Street Journal:

WSJ Tammy 8-9-17

Today’s Brew ☕ 5-25-17

Real Clear Markets

☕ John Tamny reviews a new book by Richard Salsman.

Book Review: Richard Salsman’s ‘The Political Economy of Public Debt’


All of this speaks to another area of disagreement with Salsman ahead of the ones that will conclude this review.  He correctly notes that the Keynesian “demand-side model was so discredited in the 1970s” in concert with vindication for supply-side economics, which “delivered such positive financial-economic results in the 1980s and 1990s.” There’s no dispute that supply side won precisely because the latter is a tautology: when the tax, regulatory, tariff, and debased money barriers to production are shrunk, booming economic growth is the result.  Supply side makes perfect sense, but it’s arguable that supply-siders have become ridiculous to the point that their policies have become self-suffocating.  Indeed, supply siders, in their worship of the rising revenue implications of tax cuts, have forgotten that government spending is the biggest tax of all.  And in ignoring rising government spending, they’ve allowed the genius of their tax cut, deregulation, free trade, good money policy mix to be neutered.  Figure that the posthumous John F. Kennedy tax cuts were great for economic growth, and as a result, gifted Treasury with a revenue surge in 1965.  The latter gave Congress the means to for instance introduce Medicare; a program that was initially funded with $3 billion.  The problem modernly is that a program which once cost $3 billion is projected to cost $1 trillion by 2025.  Taking nothing away from the good of supply side policies, if not met with spending cuts, they’re not nearly as effective as they otherwise would be.

The problem with supply siders isn’t their belief that deficits don’t matter, but it’s a major problem their belief that government spending doesn’t matter.  This reviewer wishes Salsman had spent more time on this point.  As a deficit realist, Salsman plainly doesn’t like government expanding beyond strict constitutional limits.  Ok, but rising federal revenues have enabled just that, not to mention that it’s much easier for governments to issue new debt if incoming tax revenues are abundant.

☕ Dan Mitchell lists nine great reasons to slash the corporate tax rate.

The Most Persuasive Argument for Slashing the Corporate Tax Rate


Let’s have a “tax war.” Folks on the left fret that this creates a “race to the bottom,” but that’s because they favor big government and think our incomes belong to the state.

As far as I’m concerned a “tax war” is desirable because that means politicians are fighting each other and every bullet they fire (i.e., every tax they cut) is good news for the global economy.

Now that I’ve shared some good news, I’ll close with potential bad news. I’m worried that the overall tax reform agenda faces a grim future, mostly because Trump won’t address old-age entitlements and also because House GOPers have embraced a misguided border-adjustment tax.

Which is why, when the dust settles, I’ll be happy if all we get a big reduction in the corporate rate.

Today’s Brew ☕ 5-7-17

The Cats Roundtable

☕ John Catsimatidis talked with Arthur Laffer this morning on his radio show, The Cats Roundtable.

☕ John Catsimatidis also spoke with Grover Norquist of Americans For Tax Reform.

John Tamny has a new article up this morning as well.

Infrastructure Spending: Solyndra-Style Waste On Roads, Freeways And Airports

Today’s Brew 5-2-17

Real Clear Markets

☕ John Tamny takes on the New York Times in his latest for Real Clear Markets:

The New York Times Has Fallen For An Economic Impossibility


But the main truth is that we can only demand goods and services insofar as we supply them first.  Glut theorists presume that goods and services just exist for us to demand. Adding to their confusion, glut theorists presume that producers create goods and services without any desire to attain goods and services in return.  No, they create so that they can get; the more value they create, the more they can demand.  And that’s why prices balance.  There are never local, national or global gluts simply because the production equals demand.

So while prices of steel and oil as the 20th century ended mock the odd notion promoted by the New York Times that either commodity is presently oversupplied, the greater truth is that the Times’ proud “discovery” of a perceived economic ill was nothing of the sort.  The very notion of a global glut is an impossiblity given the basic truth driving all economic activity: we export so that we can import.  The latter, by its very description, speaks to balance.