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More Hack Analysis from the IMF

The International Monetary Fund is a left-leaning bureaucracy that was set up to monitor the fixed-exchange-rate monetary system created after World War II. Unsurprisingly, when that system broke down and the world shifted to floating exchange rates, the IMF didn’t go away. Instead, it created a new role for itself as self-styled guardian of economic […]

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A Semi-Acceptable Indirect Bailout for Puerto Rico?

I wrote last year about why Puerto Rico got into fiscal trouble. Like Greece and so many other governments, it did the opposite of Mitchell’s Golden Rule. Instead of a multi-year period of spending restraint, it allowed the budget to expand faster than the private sector for almost two decades. As the old saying goes, […]

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Lesson from Cyprus: Spending Restraint Is the Pro-Growth Way to Solve a Fiscal Crisis

Much of my work on fiscal policy is focused on educating audiences about the long-run benefits of small government and modest taxation. But what about the short-run issue of how to deal with a fiscal crisis? I have periodically weighed in on this topic, citing research from places like the European Central Bank and International […]

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Trump, Debt, Taxes, and Inflation

I have no idea whether Donald Trump believes in bigger government or smaller government. Higher taxes or lower taxes. More intervention or less. Sometimes he says things I like. Sometimes he says things that irk me. Politicians are infamous for being cagey, but “The Donald” is an entirely different animal. Instead of using weasel words […]

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Can Greece Tax its Way to Prosperity?

In my presentations about how to deal with budgetary deterioration and fiscal crisis, I often share with audiences a list of nations that have achieved very positive results with spending restraint. The middle column shows how these countries limited the growth of government spending for multi-year periods. The next column of numbers reveals how multi-year […]

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Taxing Lessons from Europe for Hillary Clinton (a Supposed Fiscal Conservative)

I wrote yesterday about the Obama Administration’s head-in-the-sand approach regarding the anti-competitive nature of America’s corporate tax system (though maybe fiddling while Rome burns is a better metaphor). Fortunately, some nations have more sensible policy makers. Even in Europe, which might come as a surprise to the pair of class warriors battling for the Democratic […]

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