Dan Mitchell

Dan Mitchell

Greece's Collapse Explained in a Single Picture

Politicians in Europe have spent decades creating a fiscal crisis by violating Mitchell’s Golden Rule and letting the government grow faster than the private sector. As a result, government is far too big today, and nations such as Greece are

CBO's Witch-Doctor Economics and Gypsy Forecasting

I’ve criticized the Congressional Budget Office for generating biased and inaccurate numbers. These are the clowns, after all, who say deficit spending stimulates the economy in the short run but they also rely on a model which seemingly predicts 100

Grading Perry's Flat Tax: Some Missing Homework, But a Solid B+

Governor Rick Perry of Texas has announced a plan, which he outlines in today’s Wall Street Journal, to replace the corrupt and inefficient internal revenue code with a flat tax. Let’s review his proposal, using the principles of good tax

The Laffer Curve Wins Again: Snooki 1, IRS 0

The Laffer Curve is the simple notion that higher tax rates don’t necessarily generate as much loot as politicians expect because taxpayers have less incentive to earn and/or report income. And it works in both directions. Lower tax rates don’t

Freedom and Prosperity vs. Big Government and Stagnation

The folks from the Koch Institute put together a great video a couple of months ago looking at why some nations are rich and others are poor. That video looked at the relationship between economic freedom and various indices that

Look Before You Leap on Cain's 9-9-9 Tax Plan

I like the overall approach of Herman Cain’s 9-9-9 tax plan. As I recently wrote, it focuses on lower tax rates, elimination of double taxation, and repeal of corrupt and inefficient loopholes. But I included a very important caveat. The

New Video Shows the War on Poverty Is a Failure

The Center for Freedom and Prosperity has released another “Economics 101” video, and this one has a very powerful message about the federal government’s so-called War on Poverty. As explained by Hadley Heath of the Independent Women’s Forum, the various

Happy Fiscal New Year (with an Unhappy Obama Hangover)

Today, October 1, is the first day of the 2012 fiscal year. And if you’re wondering why America’s economy seems to have a hangover (this cartoon is a perfect illustration), it’s because politicians had a huge party with our money

Tim Geithner: The Forrest Gump of World Finance

One almost feels sorry for Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner. He’s a punchline in his own country because he oversees the IRS even though he conveniently forgot to declare $80,000 of income (and managed to get away with punishment that wouldn’t

Obama Tries to Put Foreign Tax Law Above U.S. Tax Law

Earlier this year, President Obama’s IRS proposed a regulation that would force banks in America to report any interest they pay to accounts owned by non-resident aliens (that’s the technical term for foreigners who don’t live in the U.S.). What

Explaining the Perverse Impact of Double Taxation with a Chart

Whether I’m criticizing Warren Buffett’s innumeracy or explaining how to identify illegitimate loopholes, I frequently write about the perverse impact of double taxation. By this, I mean the tendency of politicians to impose multiple layers of taxation on income that

Eight Questions for Protectionists

When asked to pick my most frustrating issue, I could list things from my policy field such as class warfare or income redistribution. But based on all the speeches and media interviews I do, which periodically venture into other areas,

Obama's Soak-the-Rich Tax Hikes Won't Work

It’s hard to keep track of all the tax hikes that President Obama is proposing, but it’s very simple to recognize his main target – the evil, nasty, awful people known as the rich. Or, as Obama identifies them, the

The Obama Presidency: From Tragedy to Farce

Herman Cain probably had the best reaction to the President’s speech: “We waited 30 months for this?” My reaction yesterday was mixed. In some sense, I was almost embarrassed for the President. He demanded a speech to a joint session

Government and Job Creation: Help or Hindrance?

I recently posted four charts eviscerating Obama’s record on jobs. My Cato colleague, Caleb Brown, has a good complement to those charts. He’s put together a short video looking at how government spending and regulation undermine job creation. [youtube Q6xIw9eYxOs]

Obama's Failure on Jobs: Four Damning Charts

President Obama may have a buddy-buddy relationship with big labor, but he’s no friend to ordinary workers. Here are four damning pieces of evidence. 1. The unemployment rate remains above 9 percent according to the Labor Department data released on

Are Tax Havens Moral or Immoral?

Being the world’s self-appointed defender of so-called tax havens has led to some rather bizarre episodes. The bureaucrats at the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development threatened to have me thrown in a Mexican jail for the horrible crime of

An Amazing Indictment of Obamanomics: Banks that Don't Want Deposits

I’ve commented on the failure of Obamanomics, with special focus on how both banks and corporations are sitting on money because the investment climate is so grim. Not exactly flattering to the White House. Using Minneapolis Federal Reserve data, I’ve

Is Obama Really Going to Propose another Keynesian Stimulus?

Just last week, I made fun of Paul Krugman after he publicly said that a fake threat from invading aliens would be good for the economy since the earth would waste a bunch of money on pointless defense outlays. Yesterday,