WASHINGTON -- Can we get real about "tax reform," the Republican promise to enact deep tax cuts that will spur economic growth? Probably not, but let's give it a try.
For starters, we can stop calling it "reform." That's a charged word, implying that the new tax system will be superior to the old. We don't know that for a fact; the new tax ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- William Cline is going against the grain. Cline, a well-known economist, isn't convinced that the stock market is wildly overvalued. That's an increasingly lonely view.
"Warning Signs Mount as Stocks Stumble," The Wall Street Journal headlined earlier this week. "Investors are running out of reasons to keep buying U.S. stocks, ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- There is much to dislike in President Trump's trade agenda, but he is correct on one subject: China's relentless quest to extort American "intellectual property" -- technologies, business methods, patents. Trump took a swipe last week at China's policies by ordering his top trade officials to investigate. Whether he can alter China...Read more
WASHINGTON -- A persisting puzzle about the U.S. economy is how it can seem both strong and weak. On the one hand, it remains a citadel of innovation, producing new companies like Uber. On the other, the economy is expanding at a snail's pace of 2 percent annually since 2010. How could both be true? Why isn't innovation translating into faster ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- The crucial question about raising the federal debt ceiling is: What happens if Congress doesn't? That is, what happens if Congress defaults? When President Trump returns from his "working vacation" later this month, this promises to be one of the major issues he'll face, because the Treasury is expected to run out of cash in early...Read more
WASHINGTON -- The argument between the Trump administration and its critics over a sustainable rate of economic growth raises profound questions about America's future. Have we entered a prolonged period of slow growth? If so, how does that alter society and politics? Or will the "right" policies raise growth to past levels?
If you haven't paid...Read more
WASHINGTON -- No one is working harder for the impeachment of Donald Trump than Donald Trump. If we have learned anything about this president, it is that he has a compulsion to be the center of attention. He can't bear being out of the limelight and will say almost anything -- no matter how offensive, outrageous or dishonest it strikes millions...Read more
WASHINGTON -- Janet Yellen, the chair of the Federal Reserve, is caught between Donald Trump and a hard place. By most accounts, Trump is an "easy money" guy who would prefer to keep today's low interest rates to boost job creation. For her part, Yellen has committed the Fed to a gradual rise in rates and a tightening of credit. The idea is to ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- For those of us who had hoped that American attitudes toward death were shifting in ways that would promote a wider reconstruction of the health care system, there's discouraging news from Health Affairs, the pre-eminent journal of health policy. It devotes its latest issue to "end-of-life" care and finds that -- at least so far --...Read more