Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Reaganomics, A Quarter Century Later

The 25 Fat Years

Sadly my 11-through-19-year-old skull was too full of mush to appreciate Ronald Reagan while he was in office, though I do recall my parents and lots of other adults I knew and respected liking him.

Here are the points made in the above article:
  • The changes made to the way the American economy was managed (most obviously in taxation) during the Reagan years have both stabilized and allowed the American economy to grow at a rate unequaled in modern times.
  • Making the Bush tax cuts permanent would allow the economic growth and unemployment shrinkage we've seen during the past five years to continue.
  • A Forbesian flat tax would continue and solidify Reaganomics' legacy.
  • Stop the growth of the federal government as seen under Bush (and pushed for by big-government types on both sides of the aisle).
  • Finally (and I like this greatly), we should move to a form of dynamic calculation when forecasting the impact of tax cuts on government revenues. When taxes are cut (leaving more money in the pockets of Americans), the economy receives a stimulus. The resulting growth in wages and increase in people's spending bring more cash into tax coffers, not less, as static, zero-sum calculations forecast.
These all seem like dandy conclusions and measures to me... A flat tax will be a tough sell because it's so easy to demagogue "regressiveness," but anyone looking honestly at the way the American economy has exploded over the past 25 years has to admit that something good happened then, and is worth perpetuating.

So, argue with me! Tell me why lower taxes are bad, why Reaganomics was the disaster liberals claim it was, tell me how the growth of the past two and a half decades is not traceable to changes made during the Reagan years.


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