Inequality has become a hot political issue, but there has been little accessible analysis by professional economists on equity issues in tax reform. Inequality and Tax Policy addresses those very issues. Drawing from the most current research, leading specialists in public finance, macroeconomics, and political economy explore key interactions among policy, inequality, and the economy.
Seven essays cover many different aspects of inequality: the interactions between inequality and economic growth, the impact of inequality on program evaluation, how one can measure fairness in the treatment of similarly situated taxpayers, the role of high-income entrepreneurs in wealth creation, and how attempts to redistribute income affect the behavior of taxpayers. Two central questions animate the analysis in Inequality and Tax Policy: What is the philosophical justification for progressive taxation? Is redistribution less desirable or effective in achieving social goals in an increasingly affluent society?
The contributors to Inequality and Tax Policy offer their assessments of whether the current tax system is successfully achieving redistribution and whether the results would be worse under a flat tax.
Inequality and Tax Policy will provide much-needed guidance and some surprising conclusions to economists, policymakers, lawyers, businesspeople, and anyone with an interest in inequality or the U.S. tax system.
Kevin A. Hassett is a resident scholar at AEI and coauthor with James K. Glassman of Dow 36,000: The New Strategy for Profiting from the Coming Rise in the Stock Market (Times Books, 1999).
R. Glenn Hubbard is a visiting scholar and director of the tax reform project at AEI and the Russell L. Carson Professor of Economics and Finance at Columbia University.