As the nation debates continuing coronavirus stimulus, AEI offers an eye-opening analysis:  Unemployment…
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Images of the Day: Unemployment Claims Plummeted Faster After $600 Checks Expired

As the nation debates continuing coronavirus stimulus, AEI offers an eye-opening analysis:  Unemployment claims plummeted and the employment picture improved much faster after those $600 checks expired, reestablishing that while we always want to help those who cannot help themselves, government payouts can sometimes reduce incentives and ability to return to the workforce.  And this doesn't even reflect remarkably positive employment reports released by the government since the end dates:

 

[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="562"] Continuing Unemployment Claims Dropped[/caption]

 

 

 

 

[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="563"] Initial Unemployment Claims Dropped[/caption]…[more]

November 12, 2020 • 11:57 AM

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Taxes & Economy
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61 Has Economics Failed?

It is especially painful for me, as an economist, to see that two small cities in northern California — San Mateo and Burlingame — have rent control proposals on the ballot this election year. There are various other campaigns, in other places around the country, for and against minimum wage laws, which likewise make me wonder…

62 U.N. Threatens U.S. Medical Innovation...and Our Economy

Ponder this lopsided statistic for a moment.  The United States, with just 4% of the world's population, generates 64.4% - nearly two-thirds - of all new prescription and biologic drug patents worldwide.  Our nearest individual competitor, Japan, accounts for a distant second at 10.7%, and China merely 0.2%.  The entire combined European…

63 What's in Your Wallet?

The choice for voters is clear: a tax cut from Donald Trump or a pay cut courtesy of Hillary Clinton. Trump is promising to slash income taxes to zero for millions of people currently paying them, and to reduce the tax bite on everyone. Clinton isn't cutting income tax rates for anyone. Instead, she's campaigning to hike business taxes, despite warnings…

64 Obama Deficit Heads Upward Again

The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) just revealed that this year's federal budget deficit will rise to $590 billion, a depressing 35% increase over last year's already-high $438 billion:  CBO now estimates that the 2016 deficit will total $590 billion, or 3.2 percent of GDP, exceeding last year's deficit by $152 billion... …

65 Rare Bright Spot: U.S. Still Leads in Intellectual Property Protection

The United States accounts for just 4% of the world's population, and our brief 240-year existence remains a blink of an eye relative to other cultures hundreds or even thousands of years old.  Despite that, America stands unrivaled in human history in terms of sheer innovation, prosperity and power.  From powered flight to the moon landing…

66 Voters Get to Choose Envy or Growth

On Monday, Donald Trump stopped the wisecracks and laid out a serious plan to jumpstart the nation's limping economy. He proposed tax cuts, regulatory relief, unfettered development of coal, oil and natural gas and fairer trade pacts. One item in his plan will do more than all the others to get the nation working again: cutting corporate taxes. Trump…

67 Fonda & Redford: Hollywood's New Welfare Mooches

COLORADO SPRINGS — My adopted hometown will soon be the base of operations for a new Netflix movie starring aging elitist hippies Robert Redford (estimated net worth: $170 million) and Jane Fonda (estimated net worth: $120 million). A state economic development commission unanimously voted last week to fork over $1.5 million in taxpayer…

68 Obama Didn't Save the Economy, He Subdued It

So it's official, according to the U.S. Commerce Department:  This is the worst cyclical economic recovery since World War II.  But look at the bright side:  At least Barack Obama managed to double the nation's debt in just seven years and ran up the worst deficits in history achieving it.  Obama and his apologists habitually…

69 The Tax-Shaming Trap

Hillary Clinton and the media are goading Donald Trump again into releasing his tax returns, suggesting he's unwilling to pay his "fair share." Sadly, even a few of Trump's fellow Republicans are piling on. Their crazy premise: Paying the IRS more than you legally owe makes you a better person. That's nonsense. Donald Trump is wisely resisting…

70 America’s 30-year-old Tax Code, Now Serving: No One

With our two major parties holding conventions this month and setting agendas for the next four years, now is the perfect time for Americans of all political persuasions to come together and urge comprehensive tax reform. Reforming our outdated tax code is a rare policy that maintains significant bipartisan support. Regardless of political affiliation…

71 A Builder or a Blabber in the White House

On Monday, Federal Reserve Chairman Janet Yellen gave a somber assessment of the current jobs market, throwing cold water on President Obama's election-year messaging. President Obama has been bragging that America has "the strongest" economy in the world. Right, and pigs can fly. GDP growth under Obama has averaged a stagnant 1.7 percent…

72 The $16 Billion Tax-Credit Black Hole

President Obama and GOP House Speaker Paul Ryan want to expand it. Tax preparation companies and illegal immigrants are cashing in on it. Fraudsters have found bottomless ways to exploit it. The earned income tax credit, a bipartisan-supported "anti-poverty" benefit, is robbing honest, law-abiding Americans blind. Originally intended to…

73 No, Obama Didn't Prevent the Next Great Depression

"Saving the economy from a great depression."  That was Barack Obama's response when asked by Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace to identify his "biggest accomplishment."  In Obama's defense, it's not as though he enjoys a Reaganesque litany of accomplishments from which to choose - winning the Cold War, reversing a…

74 Obama's Killer Economy

Middle-aged people laid off and unable to find work are taking another way out. They're killing themselves. Suicide rates are soaring, according to federal data released last week. Especially in economically depressed states and job-starved regions like upstate New York. People in need of work are twice as likely to take their own lives as employed…

75 Tax Week: Bernie Sanders Didn't Practice What He Preaches

Bernie Sanders asserts with religious fervor that "the rich" must pay more in taxes.  Except when it comes to Sanders himself, apparently.  It all makes for a satirical tale paralleling George Orwell's "Animal Farm" in which "all animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others."  Sanders…

76 IRS Data: Wealthier Americans Actually Pay More Than Their "Fair Share"

Do you or anyone you know insist that wealthier Americans should pay their "fair share" of the nation's taxes?  If so, then there's good news:  They already do.  In fact, according to Internal Revenue Service (IRS) data, they pay far more than their fair share.  The IRS recently released its annual summary of tax data…

77 CFIF Print Ad Urges Congress to “Get to Work” on Tax Reform

The Center for Individual Freedom last week ran a full-page print advertisement in The Weekly Standard and Washington Examiner urging Congress to “Get to Work” on passing business tax reform. “With a 35% business tax rate - the highest among the OECD nations - U.S. businesses of all sizes are suffering,” the ad reads. &ldquo…

78 Puerto Rico’s Untold Tale of Corruption

By now, many Americans are familiar with the public debt fiasco that plagues Puerto Rico. The issue has steadily risen in prominence as the gravity of Puerto Rico’s debt load sets in on the American public. Certainly, the island’s economic mismanagement has taken center stage in Washington, as Puerto Rico Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla…

79 As Our Economy Continues to Stagnate, the U.S. Falls Again in Annual Index of Economic Freedom

Last week, the U.S. Commerce Department announced that our economy grew just 0.7% in the final quarter of 2015.  Days later, the annual Wall Street Journal/Heritage Foundation Index of Economic Freedom revealed that our standing once again declined last year.  Adding particular poignancy is the way in which those two measures tragically…

80 Powerball's Biggest Winner: Government

Ka-ching! Wednesday's Powerball jackpot soared to $1.5 billion as get-rich-quick mania seized America this week. But you don't need to wait for the drawing to know who'll score the royal payoff. The biggest winner of the multistate numbers game is — drumroll, please — Uncle Sam. Powerball is a government-sponsored gambling racket…

81 Paul Ryan Starts Off on Wrong Foot With Budget Deal

Grass-roots conservatives have many unrealistic expectations and political objectives. And then sometimes they have a good point. The new budget deal arranged by John Boehner and Democrats -- approving $50 billion of additional spending in 2016 and $30 billion in 2017 -- will be split between domestic discretionary programs and defense. Cuts will…

82 Liberals Once Cared About Deficits, Until Obama Multiplied Them

Back when George W. Bush was president, liberals ceaselessly condemned his comparatively mild budget deficits.  When Barack Obama became president and proceeded to compound those deficits, however, they conspicuously went silent.  Recall what candidate Obama had to say about the issue on July 3, 2008.  On that date, the most recent…

83 Politicians' Words

At the recent televised debate among candidates for the Democrats' nomination for president, Hillary Clinton declared that "the wealthy pay too little" in taxes and "the middle class pays too much." Some people might wish to argue about whether that is true or not, but no rational argument can be made on either side of this issue…

84 Trump's Tax Plan: What's There. What's Not.

Donald Trump released his tax reform plan this week. Which is to say, this is Trump’s 2015 tax reform plan. His previous statements deriding Reagan- and Bush-era tax cuts, advocating a wealth surtax, and touting the virtues of a European-style Value Added Tax on goods and services should henceforth be considered null and void. Trump took to…

85 Obama "Recovery" Objectively Worst on Record

"Quarterly Increase in U.S. Worker Pay Smallest on Record"  So read the alarming headline of a Bloomberg Business report this past week:  "Wages and salaries in the U.S. rose in the second quarter at the slowest pace on record, dashing projections that an improving labor market would boost pay.  The 0.2 percent advance…

86 Free Trade: Congressional Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) Legislation Merits Conservative Support

The post-World War II epoch has witnessed greater prosperity and economic growth than any in human history, due largely to free trade under American guidance.  In contrast, the years preceding World War II were characterized by the most severe global depression in history, as nations withdrew behind protectionist barriers.  Centuries before…

87 'Just Asking'

In a recent panel discussion on poverty at Georgetown University, President Barack Obama gave another demonstration of his mastery of rhetoric -- and disregard of reality. One of the ways of fighting poverty, he proposed, was to "ask from society's lottery winners" that they make a "modest investment" in government programs to…

88 Deficit Growing Again, Despite Record Income Tax Haul

So Americans paid $1.4 trillion in income taxes for 2014, a new record high.  For 2015, the expected total is even higher.  It is therefore unsurprising that a majority of Americans consider the amount of taxes they pay "too high" as opposed to "about right," according to a new Gallup survey.  Just 3% - perhaps the…

89 'Tis the Season

It's tax season again, and all across the country, taxpayers and tax accountants are feeling the effects of filing a return or an extension so they don't end up on the wrong side of the IRS, get audited or, worse, get put in prison. It's never easy, but this year is even more painful than ever. The U.S. tax code has become so complicated that taxpayers…

90 The Taxman Cometh

Rand Paul is usually a pretty politically savvy guy, but he made a mistake when it came time to announce his presidential candidacy. Had the Kentucky Senator really wanted to prime voters for his anti-government message, he would’ve waited a week and announced his candidacy on April 15: Tax Day. If, like me, you’ve spent the past few weeks…

 
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