“The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people’s money.”

― Margaret Thatcher

In The Left’s Brutally Obvious Economic Failures, Greg Jones provides an excellent, though brief, review of the effects socialist and progressive policies have on the economy and, more importantly, on people from Venezuela to Seattle to Illinois.

cksits

I recently watched Shannon Sharpe and Skip Bayless get teary eyed talking about the “shameless” injustice of the NFL not hiring Kaepernick, a moderately skilled quarterback, but excellently placed social justice victim.  The “discrimination” that the QB faces is supposedly due to the evils of racism, white privilege and capitalism.  If it hasn’t already happened, Spike Lee and his friends will lead a protest over poor little Kaepernick’s plight.  But does Kaepernick’s suffering really rise to the level of, say, the average Evergreen State College student of color?  I don’t think so.

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Although Amazon has clocked staggering growth, it generates meager profits, choosing to price below-cost and expand widely instead. Through this strategy, the company has positioned itself at the center of e-commerce and now serves as essential infrastructure for a host of other businesses that depend upon it. Elements of the firm’s structure and conduct pose anticompetitive concerns—yet it has escaped antitrust scrutiny.   – Amazon’s Antitrust Paradox

The richest men in the world are social media moguls.  Their companies hire tens of thousands world-wide.  Their products have infiltrated almost every aspect of our lives.  Of course, their products often let us act out bad behaviors through tweets, posts, comments, etc.  But the real dangers of social media may be in how the social media companies treat us as customers and as employees.

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The last true reform, in 1986, under Ronald Reagan, reduced tax rates without losing revenue by eliminating swathes of tax deductions. Crucially, it was a bipartisan effort, which made it easier for Congress to take on the interest groups which avidly defend the benefits they gain from carve-outs.

President Trump and the Republican controlled Congress have promised tax cuts in 2017.  They have also promised to reduce spending and make other changes to the budget.  For some background on federal taxes and budgets, I am suggesting the following brief articles.

Phil Gramm and Michael Solon describe how “Reagan Cut Taxes, Revenue Boomed.” This demonstrated how tax cuts and deregulation can work to grow the economy while relieving the burden on tax payers.  However, because of the budget challenges facing the US now, the Economist warns that “Cutting Taxes Will Not Be Easy.”  (Of course, it never is easy to make changes to the way government functions.)  But it is possible to reform both tax and budget policy.  President Coolidge balanced the budget and reduced taxes by limiting government spending.  The results were strong economic growth, reduced burden on individual and corporate tax payers, and a boost to standard of living for the middle class.  Hopefully the President and Congress are open to the “Budget and Tax Lessons from President Calvin Coolidge“.