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No Laffer-ing Matter

Here’s a letter to the Wall Street Journal:

Today’s “Notable & Quotable” justifiably scoffs at the wildly mistaken prediction, made in 1991, that the introduction that year of an income tax in Connecticut would eliminate what then-Gov. Lowell Weicker called that state’s “orgies of spending” – spending that, between the introduction of the tax and 2014, grew 71 percent faster than inflation.

This train (wreck) of fiscal events raises a question: Will Paul Krugman and other “Progressives” who routinely ridicule as foolish all claims that cuts in marginal tax rates can be fiscally meritorious now be equally skeptical of the alleged fiscal merits of raising tax rates?

I doubt it.  But it will be interesting to behold the verbal pirouettes performed by the likes of Mr. Krugman & Co. as they persist in trying to explain that cutting taxes is by nature fiscally reckless while raising taxes is by nature fiscally prudent.

Donald J. Boudreaux
Professor of Economics
Martha and Nelson Getchell Chair for the Study of Free Market Capitalism at the Mercatus Center
George Mason University
Fairfax, VA  22030


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