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This Week From AAI


Fairness Fraud, Distorting The Economy, & The Upside Of Default


The Arkansas Project

Believe it or not, Arkansas is already facing a shortage of doctors.  In fact, the state says, "The existing health workforce is unable to meet the health needs of Arkansans by almost every measure."  What happens once Obamacare takes full effect?  David Kinkade analyzes over at The Arkansas Project.  Constitutional experts disagree on the merits of a constitutional convention, but Advance Arkansas' latest policy paper outlines a few indisputable facts. Also, Arkansas legislators who think government is getting too big & growing too fast should review our  Five Strategies policy paper


Obama Tax Overhaul: Replace Loopholes With Different Loopholes

President Obama has long offered rhetorical support for the idea of getting rid of "special interest loopholes" in exchange for lower overall rates. The economic case is apparently not so compelling, however, that the Obama administration is willing to avoid adding new  "special tax preferences" for favored industries. Reason breaks it down.


Obama's Virtual Economy

With his recently announced campaign platform-An Economy Built to Last-President Obama has essentially constructed a virtual economy. Instead of the economy we all live in, he's making one up and inviting us to pretend we are living in it. Welcome to the Sim City Economy. More from The Wall Street Journal.


The Upside of Default

Given the number of economic indicators that suggest impending trouble, few doubt that the government will be forced to default on some of its fiscal obligations within the next few decades.  However, as the experience of state defaults in the 1840s has taught, this may not be an entirely negative event -- benefits can be drawn out of a default, according to Jeffery Rogers Hummel. More from the National Center for Policy Analysis.


Unbundle the Welfare State

The New York Times has done a long article about how tea-party types actually rely on government benefit programs, extensively and increasingly. This is a key progressive political argument, and it has engendered a lot of blogospheric commentary. Read more from Jim Manzi at National Review.


Distorting the Economy is the Whole Point

What does Barack Obama mean when he advocates "tax reform"? Sometimes he simply uses the phrase as a euphemism for tax hikes. But he also claims to favor simplifying the hideously complex corporate and individual income tax codes, lowering rates while broadening the base by eliminating special breaks. Jacob Sullum of Reason explains.


Cheer Up Liberty Lovers, Schumpeter Was Wrong

Sometimes, when you are despairing that Joseph Schumpeter was right that capitalism is doomed because its very success inspires the Paul Krugmans and Robert Reichs of the world to spew venom against it, the universe randomly whacks you over the head with something to remind you that not all is lost.  More from Reason.


Halftime in Detroit

Politicians everywhere are forming encounter groups to commemorate the great Detroit rescue of 2008-2009, and given the selection of recent economic policies to feel good about, maybe the auto bailout is the best they can do. Still, amid Michigan's GOP primary and President Obama's re-election victory lap, this $81.8 billion-odd adventure in industrial policy could stand more scrutiny. More from The Wall Street Journal.


Americans' Reluctance to Make Tough Choices

"Since Lyndon Johnson's War on Poverty began in the late 1960s, government spending has gone up relentlessly," writes John Stossel. "This is just not sustainable. So what do we do? We must cut. But I fear Americans aren't up for that. People on the street told me that the budget is out of control. But when I then asked them, 'What would you cut?' most just stared ahead."  More at Reason.


Obamacare's High-Risk Pools Cost Twice as Much Per Person as Projected

Enrollment in ObamaCare's high-risk insurance plans-intended to provide immediate coverage for the especially difficult to insure until the law's major insurance expansions start up in 2014-has so far been underwhelming: Fewer than 50,000 people are enrolled in the program, according to a new report from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Initial estimates had projected that around 375,000 people would end up enrolled, possibly pushing it far over budget before 2014. Reason expounds. 


The 'Fairness' Fraud

How does allowing politicians to take more money in taxes from successful people, to squander in ways that will improve their own reelection prospects, make anything more "fair" for others? Thomas Sowell of National Review explains.

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