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  • Corrected VAT Lessons From Canada

    Marty Sullivan, a frequent commentator on tax policy, has now apparently decided the United States needs a value-added tax (VAT). To advance the cause, he penned a brief column on “VAT Lessons from Canada” [“VAT Lessons From Canada”, Martin A. Sullivan, Tax Notes, May 3, 2010.] However, in trying to … More

    European VAT Tax Evasion No Selling Point

    A big reason Europeans adopted a value-added tax (VAT) was to raise enormous sums to underwrite their social welfare state, but another was that the VAT was supposed to be much more difficult to evade than most other taxes. Europeans have a well-deserved reputation for tax evasion and so their … More

    Volcker Pronounces VAT a No Go

    According to Paul Volcker, former Chairman of the Federal Reserve and a senior economic advisor to President Obama, an European-style Value Added Tax (VAT) would be a good idea for the United States but is too unpopular to be under consideration “now or for the indefinite future.” On the one … More

    VAT Finds Favor with Debt Commission Co-Chairman Bowles

    “I think there are many good arguments that you can make for a value added tax or a consumption tax, as opposed to a tax on wages” said National Commission on Fiscal Reform Co-Chairman Erskine Bowles on April 25 during a joint appearance with Co-Chair Alan Simpson on Fox News. … More

    NABE Economists on Stimulus: No Impact!

    During the debate on and after the Obama economic stimulus bill  even some conservative economists were arguing the bill was needed to stabilize the economy.  Similar arguments followed every successive “jobs bill” Congress has enacted, despite the growing embarrassment of self-indictment implied by these bills.  It appears the economics profession … More

    McCain Throws Down the VAT Gauntlet

    The capstone of President Obama’s the “Glut the Beast” strategy is to maneuver the country into accepting a massive new Value-Added Tax (VAT).  This as yet unannounced policy has been lurking in dark policy corners for months, with no word from the President.  Senator John McCain (R-AZ) has decided not … More

    Volcker’s Volley: The VAT Battle Begins

    President Obama’s push to enact a massive tax increase in the form of a new value-added tax (VAT) is now clearly underway. Earlier this week, Obama economic adviser and former Chairman of the Federal Reserve, Paul Volcker said a “VAT should be on the table.” White House claims that Volcker … More

    Of Myths, Opinions, Taxes, and Guacamole

    Roberton Williams and Rosanne Altshuler’s Five Myths About Your Taxes in the Washington Post on Sunday was such a useful piece one hesitates to criticize, but one confusion is so unfortunate that a correction is necessary. In all, the authors got about 3 and a half right out of five, … More

    Are Spring Doves Flocking to the Fed?

    The White House has indicated it intends to nominate San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank President Janet Yellen as Vice-Chairman of the Federal Reserve Board in Washington. The White House has said the top candidates for the two remaining Board slots are the relatively unknown attorney Sarah Raskin, Maryland’s Commissioner on … More

    TPC’s Hits and Misses on Ryan’s Roadmap

    On March 9 the Tax Policy Center (TPC) released a preliminary analysis of the tax reform proposal contained in Rep. Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) Roadmap for America’s Future fiscal plan. The TPC analysis helps Ryan advance the tax reform ball considerably, but it also raises issues some of which need to … More