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In fact, the four countries with fiscal stimulus as measured by the true increase in open public spending from 2007 to 2009 were Chile (25.3), the Slovak Republic (19.3), Mexico (17.4), and America (15.8)! Which includes only one of Laffer’s choice of 4 countries with the least growth in GDP rates.
The other three got much lower boosts in public spending of 11.7 (Ireland) and 7.7 (Estonia and Finland). In conclusion, Laffer makes a true quantity of errors in his editorial. The first is to compare the growth in GDP rates with government spending as a percent of GDP. He could be screening for a relationship between two factors but expressing one of these (spending) in conditions of the other (GDP).
That is, he is linking them by design! As an example of this link, suppose that spending remains continuous but GDP drops. By simple arithmetic, this will cause spending as a percentage of GDP to rise and become interpreted by Laffer as stimulus. This seems as an extremely elementary mistake for a specialist economist to be making.
The second mistake is to choose one span of data and appearance at only that data. Posted by R Davis at 12:01 AM 0 comments Email ThisBlogThis! Marketplace, an open public radio program, has been covering Wealth and Poverty issues on its programs for a number of months. On July 26th, a segment titled “Arthur Laffer on income inequality, raising taxes” was broadcast.
The audio can be downloaded from this link. Following is an excerpt from the transcript: Horwich: Many economists will say the data is extremely inconclusive in practice as to how marginal tax changes actually influence personal and business activity. Why are you so sure? Laffer: Because basically, these economists you discuss never worked in the real world.
They’re just looking at the econometrics and the data there. Should anyone ever go and appearance at what’s being recommended from the CPA firms, from financial organizers. If you actually look at how they go through, do their tax returns — believe me, they may be more focused on their taxes than you and I are on the taxes. Horwich: But am I right that I simply heard you criticize economists for actually looking at the info and making their decisions predicated on that?
Laffer: No, no, not taking a look at the data. I think it’s wonderful to check out the info. But I think it’s really silly to check out this accurate data and not make any judgments beyond those aggregate data I had was especially struck by this last statement about judgment versus data. It sounded if you ask me that Laffer has made the judgment to ignore the data!
The whole point of carefully calculating the info is to check your judgements. I concur that taxes likely impact individual behavior, prompting less effort at working and more work at avoidance/evasion. However, who’s to say how large these results are and whether there are any counter-effects? For tax cuts to raise profits, pretax labor earnings have to go up by a more substantial percentage than the taxes rate falls. You can find two competing pushes at play in determining whether pretax earning rise, stay the same, or fall. Posted by R Davis at 11:42 PM 0 comments Email ThisBlogThis!