Backgrounder posted September 12, 2014
Understanding Thomas Piketty and His Critics
Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the Twenty-First Century is a treatise on how wealth inequality evolves in capitalistic economies. It is the most talked-about and most critiqued economics book of 2014 because Piketty’s timing was perfect: He released the English edition when income inequality was being actively debated in the United States. President Barack Obama brought…
Backgrounder posted September 4, 2014
Business Inversions: Tax Reform Is the Only Way to Curb Them
A recent surge of interest in U.S. business inversions—a process whereby an American company merges with a foreign business and moves the combined business’s headquarters to the foreign country—has precipitated calls for Congress to put an end to the practice.
The American public and lawmakers are rightfully concerned about businesses moving their headquarters abroad.…
Testimony posted August 4, 2014
Tax Reform Would Help American Families: Dynamic Scoring Makes it More Likely
Testimony before the Subcommittee on Select Revenue Measures
of the Committee on Ways and Means
U.S. House of Representatives
My name is Curtis S. Dubay. I am Research Fellow in Tax and Economic Policy at The Heritage Foundation. The views I express in this testimony are my own, and should not be construed as representing any official position of The Heritage…
Issue Brief posted June 26, 2014
Congress Should Be Cautious About Expanding the Child Tax Credit
Members of Congress have renewed the discussion of increasing the Child Tax Credit (CTC) to help the beleaguered middle class. Their desire to help the middle class is laudable. The slow recovery and President Barack Obama’s faulty economic policies have hit the middle class hard, but increasing the CTC is not the best way to deliver relief. The better approach would be…
Issue Brief posted June 10, 2014
FATCA Hurts Law-Abiding Americans Living Abroad
On July 1, the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) will fully take effect. FATCA is supposed to reduce tax evasion by making it harder for tax cheats to abuse tax havens. In practice, however, FATCA is forcing law-abiding American taxpayers residing overseas to bear enormous financial and legal burdens. Congress should reform FATCA so that it does not hurt innocent…
Issue Brief posted April 8, 2014
Tax Day 2014: How Tax Reform Would Make Filing Taxes Better
April 15, the day Americans’ tax returns for the previous year are due to the IRS, is fast approaching. Families all over the country are scrambling to find documentation for their incomes and any expenses they incurred that might be deductible, creditable, or exemptible. It is a day of consternation for most families because of the mind-numbing complexity of completing…
Issue Brief posted March 31, 2014
Tax Extenders an Opportunity to Improve the Tax Code
The tax extenders are a group of approximately 50 tax-reducing policies that expire regularly. Congress has traditionally extended them just as regularly as they expire.
Most recently, they expired at the end of 2013, and Congress has yet to address them this year. Congress previously extended them as part of the “fiscal cliff” deal struck at the beginning of 2013. That…
Backgrounder posted March 14, 2014
Chairman Camp’s Tax Reform Plan Keeps Debate Alive Despite Flaws
In February, the chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, Representative Dave Camp (R–MI), released his long-awaited tax reform plan. Chairman Camp and his staff are to be applauded for the tireless work they put into crafting the plan and for the courage they displayed in releasing it in a difficult environment for tax reform.
Discussion and debate about the…
Backgrounder posted February 19, 2014
The Proper Tax Treatment of Interest
Treating interest properly in the tax code is essential to maintaining neutrality. Neutrality should be the guiding principle of tax reform. It holds that taxes should not influence—positively or negatively—the economic decisions of families, investors, entrepreneurs, or businesses. A neutral tax code is the most conducive to economic growth.
In debates about tax reform…
Issue Brief posted February 6, 2014
Economy Better, but Still Growing Too Slowly Because of Anti-Growth Policy
The new Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) report measuring how fast the economy grew in the fourth quarter of 2013 and for the entire year of 2013 confirms that while the U.S. economy has clearly picked up steam, it is still in the grip of a subpar recovery from the recession that ended in 2009.
The cost of this slack-paced expansion—compared to past recoveries—has been…