January 17, 2008
While the Presidential candidates are campaigning on grandiose and often radical reforms to the current tax system, they are missing out on a simple commonsense reform that would make tax filing easier for millions of Americans.
January 15, 2008
Let's say President Bush and Congress agree that the U.S. needs a fiscal boost to jump-start the sluggish economy. Let's say they even reach a consensus on what to do (fantasy, perhaps, but bear with me). Could tax cuts and direct aid get to individuals, business, and states in time to forestall a recession?
January 10, 2008
At the Brookings Institution this morning, a standing-room only crowd heard five economic heavyweights debate what may become the central domestic policy issue of 2008. Do we need fiscal stimulus to keep the nation out of recession, and, if we do, what should it look like?
January 8, 2008
So who does pay the corporate income tax? The question seems simple, but the answer turns out to be exceedingly complicated.
January 4, 2008
Barack Obama, with his big victory in the Iowa caucuses, has done a terrific job positioning himself as the Democrats' candidate of change. In his "closing argument" speech a few days before the voting, Obama repeated the word no fewer than 18 times.
January 2, 2008
As most TaxVox readers know, the political establishment waited until the last possible moment to pass the inevitable extension of the AMT "patch," sparing 20 million taxpayers from the dreaded alternative tax. Now the IRS says that lawmakers' procrastination will delay the start of the tax filing season by about a month—until mid-February—for taxpayers who claim certain tax credits that the AMT would have affected but for the twelfth-hour reprieve.
December 31, 2007
A News Years Eve, 1965, Time magazine article quoted iconic free-market economist Milton Friedman as saying, "We are all Keynesians now." Friedman later explained that the quote was taken out of context. He meant that even though the language of John Maynard Keynes—famous for recommending fiscal policy as a tool to manage the economy—had pervaded popular consciousness, most people had no idea what this meant.
December 27, 2007
The leaders of both the House and Senate are exploring options for an economic stimulus plan they would unveil if the economy continues to weaken in 2008, TaxVox has learned. The talks, still in their early stages, could trigger a major election-year battle over fiscal policy. While neither party has settled on a plan, congressional Republicans are likely to propose new tax breaks as well an extension of the 2001 Bush tax cuts. Democrats are looking at a mix of tax cuts and other measures that they'd attach to targeted relief for those hardest hit by the mortgage mess.
December 24, 2007
Congress and the President have finally left town. But they left quite a legacy. Here are our nominees for the five biggest fiscal losers of 2007. The AMT Patch: Sure, Congress finally agreed to keep 20 million middle-class families off the AMT for one more year. But it never paid for the $50 billion temporary fix and ignored proposals to permanently resolve the mess. Just wait until next year, when they do it all again.
December 20, 2007
In the aftermath of Sept. 11, 2001, Congress created a program in which taxpayers would backstop private insurance in the event of another major terror attack. The program, called the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA), was supposed to be a temporary effort to both stabilize the insurance industry and prevent a broader economic meltdown after insurers stopped writing property and casualty coverage for many urban commercial developments.