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Avoiding Financial Stupidity

While standing on the balcony of a nice hotel recently […]

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Budget Myths and Facts for the 2016 Campaign

I have a very mixed view of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, which is an organization representing self-styled deficit hawks in Washington. They do careful work and I always feel confident about citing their numbers. Yet I frequently get frustrated because they seem to think that tax increases have to be part of […]

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Greek Politicians Should Learn from Latvia

I wrote last month that the debt burden in Greece doesn’t preclude economic recovery. After all, both the United States and (especially) the United Kingdom had enormous debt burdens after World War II, yet those record levels of red ink didn’t prevent growth. Climbing out of the debt hole didn’t require anything miraculous. Neither the […]

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Periodic Debt Limit Fights Are Messy, but May Help Prevent Long-Run Crisis

Remember the big debt limit fight of 2013? The political establishment at the time went overboard with hysterical rhetoric about potential instability in financial markets. They warned that a failure to increase the federal government’s borrowing authority would mean default to bondholders even though the Treasury Department was collecting about 10 times as much revenue […]

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Greece’s Debt Is Sustainable

The conventional wisdom, pushed by the IMF and others, is that Greece’s economy will never recover unless there is substantial debt relief. Translated into English, that means the Greek government should be allowed to break the contracts it made with the people and institutions that lent money to Greece. That may mean a “haircut,” which […]

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State Fiscal Rankings and Implications for Public Policy and the 2016 Presidential Race

There’s an old saying that states are the laboratories of democracy. But since I’m a policy wonk, I focus more on the lessons we can learn from the states about public policy. Such as the importance of limiting the destructive nature of taxes. Such as the economic benefits of not having an income tax. Such […]

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