Ed Dolan's Econ Blog

Category Archive: Election 2016

  • The Progressive Case for Abolishing the Corporate Income Tax

    Reform of the corporate income tax is shaping up to be one of the big issues facing Congress in 2017. Republicans are pushing for big cuts in the corporate tax rate. Most observers seem to assume that conservatives and progressives will be at swords points over those cuts, but they should not be. There is […]

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  • How Does the Obama Jobs Record Score Against Other Presidents? (Let’s Be Fair)

    As Barack Obama prepares to leave office, there has been a lot of talk about his record of job creation. The raw numbers look pretty  good: Payroll jobs increased by some 11 million from the quarter before Obama’s inauguration to his last full quarter in office. That is the third best among the 12 presidents […]

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  • Is US Fiscal Policy About to Go Procyclical, Yet Again? How Can We Tell?

    As 2017 begins, the US economy is in the middle of a boom, or at least a boomlet. The official unemployment rate is at or below its target level, stock market indicators are hitting all-time highs, and the Fed is starting to get serious about raising interest rates. All this is reflects the expectation of […]

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  • Deplorables Didn’t Elect Trump, Jams Did

    Hillary Clinton famously characterized Donald Trump’s voters as a “basket of deplorables,” but she was wrong. Our friends, the British, have figured it out: Trump was elected not by deplorables, but by jams. “Jams,” short for “Just About Managing,” is the new term has swept British political discourse. They are defined as a social class […]

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  • Trade and Jobs: Why the Protectionist Cure Could be Worse Than the Globalization Disease

    Dramatic promises to restrict international trade were a signature element of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign. So far, he seems to be following through, with an early reaffirmation of his intent to withdraw US participation in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). An aggressive stance on trade played a key role in gaining the support of working class […]

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  • Why Do Top Execs Fear Trump, and Fear to Say So?

    It is not surprising that there is little love for Donald Trump’s presidential candidacy among the leaders of top US multinational corporations. Why then, asks Andrew Ross Sorkin of the New York Times, do they not speak out? Why do they quickly follow up their private comments with, “I could never say that on the […]

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  • A Lesson in Unintended Consequences: How Clinton’s Policies Would Raise Effective Tax Rates for the Middle Class

    Hillary Clinton is often said to be a policy wonk, deeply enmeshed in specifics and details, but that may be a mischaracterization. In some ways, her approach seems disturbingly superficial, skipping one perceived problem to another with little attention to their underlying causes. In some cases, Clinton seems to have paid little attention to the […]

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  • Does the Social Safety Net Provide Enough Incentive to Work?

    One of the most common criticisms of social safety net programs is that they discourage work. As House Speaker Paul Ryan has put it, they risk becoming a “hammock that lulls able-bodied people to lives of dependency and complacency,  that drains them of their will and their incentive to make the most of their lives.” […]

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  • Voters are Angry about Free Trade. What is the Right Policy Response?

    The two most watched candidates of this presidential election season, Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders, have put anger over the effects of free trade at the center of their campaigns. In doing so, they have won millions of votes. Many of the arguments they use in their stump speeches are overly simplistic, but the anger […]

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  • The Great Bipartisan War on Free Trade

    Like most economists, I am strongly inclined toward free trade. I cringe to see the way free trade is under attack, from both parties, during this primary season. The two populist candidates are the worst offenders. Bernie Sanders, whom I support on many other issues [1] [2] [3], goes off the rails when it comes […]

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