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  • economic growth

    Morning Bell: Obama and Congress Are Choosing to Cause a Recession

    President Obama recently said, “The most important lesson I’ve learned is you can’t change Washington from the inside.” That’s demoralizing to hear when a recession is bearing down on the economy—and it’s an inside job. The Congressional Budget Office has forecasted a fresh recession to hit next year if Taxmageddon, … More

    Socialist Austerity in France

    Francois Hollande won election to the French presidency by promising that more government spending would lead to quick economic growth. He sharply criticized the “austerity”—i.e., sudden spending cuts—proposed by his opponent. A few months later, Hollande has come full circle. In addition to a tax increase that has wealthy French … More

    Congressional Research Service Wrongly Implies Lower Tax Rates Don't Strengthen Economy

    The Congressional Research Service (CRS) set out to make a convincing case that lower income tax rates do not strengthen the economy. It failed, but in so doing, it called into question the quality of CRS analysis and the institution’s credibility as non-partisan. The CRS is supposed to provide expert, … More

    It's Not Getting Better: GDP Grows at a Sluggish 1.7 Percent Rate

    This morning’s update from the Department of Commerce on economic activity in the second quarter shows that the economy grew at an anemic 1.7 percent annual rate. This follows a nearly equally weak first quarter growth rate of 2.0 percent. How weak is this? In terms of economic output, the … More

    Sluggish Economic Growth: More Reason to Renounce Tax Hikes

    On the afternoon of another discouraging assessment of the nation’s economic growth, the Obama Administration late Friday quietly released its mid-year update of the budget. The synchronicity made clear just how far from reality the President’s fiscal and economic policies have drifted—and the imperative of a prompt course correction. Friday … More

    Indonesia Could Teach U.S. Some Fiscal Responsibility

    On July 11, German Chancellor Angela Merkel praised Indonesia as a model of government debt management. In absolute terms, though, Indonesia’s government spending and government debt has steadily increased. Indonesia’s robust fiscal standing comes first from economic growth with some help from controlling fuel subsidies. Indonesia’s government debt declined from … More

    Yes, Alan Blinder, "Stimulus" is a Dirty Word

    Whenever misguided economic policy advice crops up, it’s imperative to correct it. The latest comes from Princeton economist Alan Blinder. He advocates for more stimulus, especially more education spending, and pleads for higher tax rates on the “rich.” These policies are mistaken. He begins by contending that, because interest rates … More

    What Productivity Really Means

    A recent Heritage post responded to an article in The New York Times that suggested we be less productive. One comment challenged our rebuttal: The takeaway you should have gotten is that we are so addicted to the concept of efficiency that we forget that in some instances being more … More

    Would Working Less Make Us Prosperous?

    In a recent New York Times column, a professor of economics argued that the reason we’re mired in economic malaise is that we’re too productive. Ever-increasing productivity means that if our economies don’t continue to expand, we risk putting people out of work.…What, then, should happen when, for one reason … More

    World War II: Economic Stimulant or Depressant?

    Did World War II spending boost economic growth? Although some statistics appear to affirm this, wiser historical analysis demonstrates that artificial increases in output during the war masked a debilitated private economy. Meaningful growth increased after the war, when free-market mechanisms returned and marginal tax rates were reduced. Gross national … More