Savings and Gramm: How the Fed is Slowing Monetary Growth

The Federal Reserve is buying Treasury bills and mortgage-backed securities at a rate of $120 billion a month. This is apparently being done to support large borrowing by the federal government. At the same time, the Fed has pulled almost a trillion dollars of liquidity out of the financial system by “reverse-repo borrowing.” This has reduced bank reserves and private sector lending. Not surprisingly, the growth of the M2 money stock fell from around 25% in 2020 to around 10% on an annualized basis in the first six months of 2021. MORE

Kotlikoff: Government Debt is like a Ponzi Scheme

At the very time leftist politicians are proposing to finance their programs with mammoth deficit spending, leftist economists are giving them cover with the argument the country may never have to pay off the debt.

But Goodman Institute Senior Fellow and Boston University Economist, Professor Laurence Kotlikoff and his colleagues challenge this conclusion in two papers posted at the highly prestigious National Bureau of Economic Research Working Paper site. Deficits used to finance current consumption “are like Ponzi schemes,” they say.” More

Study: Inequality Greatly Exaggerated

Lifetime spending inequity is one-third of wealth inequality. The main reason: government taxes and transfers, which make the system far more “progressive than we are led to believe. In 2018, for example, the top 1 percent of taxpayers paid 40.1 percent of all federal income taxes. The top 10 percent paid 71.4 percent. The bottom half of the country paid less than 3 percent of all federal income taxes. More

Mark Cuban’s Health Plan

Forbes

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban has done some innovative thinking on how to reform the health care system. The Cuban plan is similar to an idea once proposed by Milton Friedman and also by Harvard economist Martin Feldstein. In a nutshell, people would be responsible for medical bills up to a certain percent of their income, and government would pay everything above that. In other words, people would pay ordinary bills out-of-pocket, and government would provide catastrophic coverage for the large bills. More.

Goodman: Conservatism Needs a Reset

William F. Buckley is best known for promoting a fusionist approach on the right – uniting traditionalists and classical liberals in a common cause — especially in National Review. Yet in the latest post at National Review, Buckley’s former debating partner, John C. Goodman says this approach is not working. Those who believe “We should stand athwart history yelling stop” have no appeal for the young, he says. “They generate none of the energy and enthusiasm needed for a successful political movement.”

Goodman says conservatives should focus instead on reforming institutions, liberating people and making the world a better place. “The classical liberals were reformers,” he says.” To be successful, modern conservatives must follow in their footsteps.”

Father of Health Savings Accounts Says We need One, Universal Account

Forbes

More than 80 million people have some kind of savings account targeted for health care. But the system needs reform:

·     By law, seniors cannot make deposits to an HSA

·     Almost no one with Obamacare insurance has an HSA

·     Among those who have an account, money cannot be used to pay the fees of “direct primary care” doctors – who are available by phone, email and Skype and as an alternative to emergency room care at nights and on weekends.

·     It is impossible to structure HSAs for diabetes and other chronic conditions

Writing in Forbes, John C. Goodman says there should be one, easy-to-use account available to everybody. Sen. Ben Sasse (R-NE) has introduced a plan to move in this direction.

GOP Tax Reform is Worth $39,000 to Georgia Families

Because of lower taxes and higher wages, the average Georgia household will enjoy more than $39,000 in economic benefits over their lifetime thanks to the 2017 federal tax cuts. That’s the conclusion of a Goodman Institute study by Boston University professor Laurence Kotlikoff. An earlier study by Kotlikoff and economists at the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, also partly funded  by the Goodman Institute, estimated the gain at $22,676 because of personal income tax cuts. The new study adds the impact of lower corporate taxes. More

Biden tax plan hurts workers

Biden Tax Plan 2020

One of the intellectual architects of the 2017 tax cut legislation says the Joe Biden proposal to reimpose higher tax rates will be harmful to the economy and to working families. Earlier studies by Boston University professor Lawrence Kotlikoff and his colleagues found that “the United states had one for the highest corporate tax rates in the world.” As a result of lowering the top corporate rate from 35% to 21%, the US became competitive and more than $1 trillion has been repatriated by US firms. In a new study, Kotlikoff finds that the Biden proposal to undo half the cut in the corporate income tax rate will lower wages and cost jobs. MORE