Workers & Economic Inequality

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Structural Revenue Issue Negates Deficit Gains

TCF fellow Ed Kleinbard tells Bloomberg Surveillance that a revenue shortfall will impact that narrowing of the U.S. deficit. Watch:

Tags: tax policy, revenue, fiscal policy, deficit, bloomberg

The Risks of Income Inequality

TCF fellow Ed Kleinbard joined The Diane Rehm show with Senator Elizabeth Warren and economists Scott Winship of the Manhattan Institute and Dean Baker of the Center for Economic and Policy Research to discuss what’s driving economic inequality and what, if anything, we should do about it.


Tags: janet yellen, elizabeth warren, economic inequality, diane rehm show, dean baker

Wonkbook: Why the Obama Administration Won’t Oversell Obamacare in Year Two

Wonkblog’s Puneet Kollipara lists TCF fellow Mark Thoma’sThe Fiscal Times article on economic inequality as the day’s top opinion. Thoma:

So my approach to fighting inequality in the short-run is to use taxation and corrective redistribution to ensure that workers receive the income they deserve, to fix the distributional problems that have allowed those at the top to capture more than their fair share of income, and enact supply-side incentives that have been shown to work as soon as possible. The hope is that the supply-side policies and corrections to the distribution of income will produce the types of jobs and equitable compensation that are needed to solve the inequality problem in the longer run. But there’s a chance that no matter what we do, the inequality problem will persist.

Read wonkbook, wonkblog, redistribution, progressive taxes, progressive fiscal system, economic inequality

Ireland to close corporate tax loophole used by Google and others

TCF fellow, Edward D. Kleinbard has been quoted in a L.A. Times article about Google's tax dealings in Ireland.

Bowing to pressure from U.S. and European officials, Ireland will phase out a notorious loophole that helps multinational corporations legally dodge billions of dollars in taxes in their homelands.

A tax maneuver known as the Double Irish has allowed major U.S. technology companies such as Google Inc. to funnel income through subsidiaries in Ireland to slash their tax bills at home.

The decision to close that loophole won't affect Ireland's low corporate tax rate or other special tax breaks that have lured the likes of tech giants Apple, Facebook, Microsoft and Oracle, all of which have set up Irish subsidiaries to help them shelter foreign profits from U.S. taxes.

Read the full article.

Tags: taxes, tax loopholes, tax avoidance, ireland, google, corporate taxes, corporate tax loopholes, corporate tax, corporate profit

What’s the Best Way to Overcome Rising Economic Inequality?

TCF fellow, Mark Thoma writes about tackling rising economic inequality in an article for The Fiscal Times.

A debate over the use of progressive taxation and redistribution as a means of solving the problem of rising inequality erupted in the last week or so. The debate began with three publications, one from Edward Kleinbard, one from Nezih Guner, Martin Lopez-Daneri, and Gustavo Ventura, and one from Cathie Jo Martin and Alexander Hertel-Fernandez. 

They argue in turn that “progressive fiscal outcomes do not require particularly progressive tax systems,” “making taxes more progressive taxes won’t raise much revenue,” and “The way a tax system fights inequality isn't just redistribution. It's by generating enough revenue to fund programs and benefits that help middle class, working class, and poor people participate and succeed in the economy. While talk of taxing top earners may make for good political rhetoric on the left, relying on such taxes cannot pay the bills.”

Read the full article.

Tags: taxation, progressive tax, inequality, income inequality, income gap

Tax Expert Says Everyone’s Too Obsessed With Taxes

Bloomberg Businessweek has published a piece about TCF fellow, Edward D. Kleinbard's latest book, We Are Better Than This.

Edward Kleinbard knows as much about taxation in America as anyone alive. He was a tax partner at the law firm Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton, then chief of staff of U.S. Congress’s Joint Committee on Taxation, and is now a professor at the University of Southern California’s law school. But when he set out to write a book about how to fix the American tax system, it made him realize that the problem wasn’t the tax system; it’s everyone’s fixation on the tax system.

Republican obsession with taxes is the more explicit: They want simply to cut them. Kleinbard is a staunch Democrat, and his new book, We Are Better Than This, has little patience with the economic and philosophical tenets of modern American conservativism. But Democrats have their own tax obsession, as he sees it: They want to aim taxes at the wealthy, to make them pay a greater share of the take. They rail against companies that figure out ways to minimize their corporate taxes. That focus, Kleinbard argues, is misguided.

Read the full article, and purchase We Are Better Than This.

Tags: we are better than this, taxation, tax system, tax reform, kleinbard, ed kleinbard, corporate taxes, corporate tax


Workers & Economic Inequality

Workers & Economic Inequality

In recent decades, and especially since 2000, the richest Americans have enjoyed soaring income and wealth while the rest of the population's living standards have stagnated. The Century Foundation was one of the first institutions to raise serious concerns about these trends and propose ideas for improving economic conditions for all Americans- not just the fortunate few.

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