More on Tax Fairness – We Pretty Much Have Flat Taxes Now

In the last couple of days I've posted a couple times on taxes. In one post, I observed how hedge fund managers have radically lower tax rates than the most of us because of a loophole introduced in the Bush-era tax cuts.  Yesterday, I showed  graphically how average income tax rates are actually lower than … Continue reading More on Tax Fairness – We Pretty Much Have Flat Taxes Now

Tax Rates Are Historically Low

The  Difference Between Average and Marginal Taxes U.S. average tax rates are at historical lows.  Yes, that's right. Our taxes aren't "high", despite the Tea Party's claim that we are "taxed enough already".  The average family pays approximately 5% of gross income as U.S federal income tax. How can that be you ask?  Well, the … Continue reading Tax Rates Are Historically Low

Nuclear Power and Externalities

Externalities are one way in which markets and private enterprise can fail to reach socially desirable outcomes.  An externality exists whenever there's a third party or parties that are affected by a transaction, yet they have no direct say in the transaction.  Typically we assume that any market transaction involves two parties, a buyer and … Continue reading Nuclear Power and Externalities

CEO’s Pay Grows, Average Worker Pay Stagnates

The top end of the income distribution has recovered from any ill effects of the Great Recession, but the average worker has not.  CEO's in particular saw their compensation increase 27% in 2010, while the workers at the corporations these CEO's "lead" has barely moved.  Wonkroom notes: Households across the country are still feeling the … Continue reading CEO’s Pay Grows, Average Worker Pay Stagnates

Bankers vs. Democratic Finance at The Constitutional Convention

I'm cross-posting the following with permission from New Deal 2.0.  This should be of particular interest to students of American history. Our current struggles and political battles over the relative power and influence of banks and the monied class vs. ordinary citizens, workers, and small businesses, most of whom are dependent on sources of financial … Continue reading Bankers vs. Democratic Finance at The Constitutional Convention

Recessions Are Matters of Life and Death

I think it's always important for policy wonks, politicians, and tenured professors to careful when discussing recessions and unemployment.  It's very easy from the safety of a secure income to focus on the data and the numbers.  But behind the data and numbers are real humans.  Recessions and high unemployment have real, human costs. It's … Continue reading Recessions Are Matters of Life and Death

Libya, Tunisia, Egypt – One of These Is Not Like The Other

Lately I've been puzzled about why NATO and the U.S. have intervened militarily in Libya, but stayed out of popular rebellions in Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen, Bahrain, and other middle east countries.  Human rights concerns doesn't seem to fully explain it.  After all governments in Yemen and Bahrain in particular have violated human rights without so … Continue reading Libya, Tunisia, Egypt – One of These Is Not Like The Other

Finally Clarity on Wisconsin’s Real Objective: Bust Unions

Menzie Chinn reports more dispatches from Wisconsin, this time on recent Congressional testimony by Wisconsin's Governor Scott Walker.  It's clear the union-busting efforting in Wisconsin is NOT about the state budget or saving money.  It's ideological. It's opposition to unions period.  The budget is and was irrelevant. It was pure propaganda by Walker and the Wisconsin … Continue reading Finally Clarity on Wisconsin’s Real Objective: Bust Unions

Taxes and Unshared Sacrifice

It's tax time so it's appropriate to look at the fairness of the tax code.  One of the greatest beneficiaries of the Bush-era tax cuts were hedge fund managers.  Hedge fund managers are people on Wall Street who manage other people's money, not primarily their own.  In return, they get paid fees for managing the … Continue reading Taxes and Unshared Sacrifice