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July 23, 2024

How the 2017 Tax Law Made Itemized Charitable Giving a Luxury Good

Key Points Read the PDF. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017 included some of the most far-reaching changes to the US income tax code in a generation. In addition to reducing statutory tax rates for individuals and corporations, the law adjusted the tax base. Among its most significant changes to the individual…

July 10, 2024

Has Income Growth between Generations of Americans Stalled?

A defining aspect of the American dream is that the economic well-being of each generation surpasses that of the previous one. However, commentators have questioned whether this holds true for the most recent generations. A 2022 Gallup poll found that only 42 percent of Americans expect today’s young people to have a better life than…

June 18, 2024

A Unified Theory of Education

When it comes to education, these have been the best of times and the worst of times. In 2021, Arizona adopted the nation’s first universal education-savings-account (ESA) program. In 2022, West Virginia adopted the second. That trickle became a flood in 2023, with states from Arkansas to Utah to Ohio adopting their own programs. Around…

June 18, 2024

Economic Opportunity and Social Mobility

Years ago, I worked at the Pew Charitable Trusts on something called the Economic Mobility Project. In 2009, we commissioned a survey covering opportunity, mobility, and the American Dream. One revealing question we asked was the following: The term American Dream means different things to different people. Here are some ways some people have described…

June 10, 2024

Employment and Labor Supply Responses to the Child Tax Credit Expansion: Theory and Evidence

AbstractThe 2021 Child Tax Credit (CTC) expansion increased government benefits to families, andespecially to families with the lowest incomes. Economic theory predicts that this policyintervention would have led to a reduction in labor supply among adults in those families. Ourreview of available research suggests that employment within broadly defined demographicgroups was not reduced by the…

June 10, 2024

The Economic World We’ve Lost

Populism has infected both major parties in the United States, leading to policies that previous generations of economic policymakers would immediately recognized as foolhardy and counter-productive. But whether the country can escape its self-destructive pessimism is anyone’s guess. WASHINGTON, DC – The past decade has brought a sea change in US economic policy, and not…

June 4, 2024

What Comes After Neoliberalism?

The steep tariff increases on Chinese goods that US President Joe Biden’s administration recently announced are just the latest in a long string of interventionist economic policies that fly in the face of decades of neoliberal orthodoxy. And the Biden administration is hardly alone: a growing number of governments, economists, and institutions are rethinking the…

May 24, 2024

The First National Calculation of Mortality of the US Homeless Population

It is well established that those with lower incomes tend to have worse health outcomes. But whether this relationship extends to the most disadvantaged in society – people experiencing homelessness – has rarely been examined. This column explores the relationship between homelessness and health outcomes in the US. It finds that after accounting for demographic…

May 23, 2024

Biden’s Unending Student Loan Forgiveness Run

On Tuesday, the Biden administration announced $7.7 billion in student debt cancellation for about 161,000 borrowers, equating to about $48,000 per borrower. Compared to what has already been spent on loan forgiveness since the pandemic began, that’s an enormous drop in a gargantuan bucket. AEI’s Student Debt Forgiveness Tracker, which I run, tracks all student loan revenue from…

May 20, 2024

Indivar Dutta-Gupta and Scott Winship on the 60th Anniversary of LBJ’s “War on Poverty” on C-SPAN’s “Washington Journal”

Indivar Dutta-Gupta and Scott Winship talked about the 60th anniversary of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s “Great Society” speech and the war on poverty.