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Pathways to Fiscal Reform in the United States by John W. Diamond

Experts discuss fiscal reforms intended to address the U.S. debt problem, examining entitlements, federal budgetary processes, and individual and corporate income taxes.

The United States and other advanced economies in the Eurozone and elsewhere face severe fiscal problems. The United States is on an unsustainable dynamic path; absent corrective fiscal policies, federal deficits and debts relative to gross domestic product will continue to increase dramatically. In this book, experts consider possible fiscal reforms aimed at addressing the debt problem, focusing on entitlement programs, budgetary issues and processes, and individual and corporate income tax reform.

The contributors address such topics as the interaction of rising health care costs and the level of federal expenditures; alternative methods for evaluating the fiscal health and sustainability of Social Security; the effectiveness of budgetary constraints imposed on the states, including balanced budget amendments and debt ceilings; approaches to curtailing individual tax expenditures and methods for increasing the progressivity of the tax system; and the effects of traditional base-broadening, rate-reducing corporate income tax reforms.

Henry J. Aaron, James Alm, Rosanne Altshuler, Daniel Baneman, Joe Barnes, Robert J. Carroll, Ruud A. de Mooij, John W. Diamond, Jagadeesh Gokhale, Jane G. Gravelle, Peter R. Hartley, Vivian Ho, John Kitchen, Edward D. Kleinbard, John Mutti, Thomas S. Neubig, Mark V. Pauly, Rudolph G. Penner, Andrew J. Rettenmaier, Shanna Rose, Joseph Rosenberg, Daniel Smith, Eric Toder, Alan D. Viard, Roberton Williams, George R. Zodrow

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780262028301
Publisher: MIT Press
Publication date: 01/02/2015
Pages: 432
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

John W. Diamond is Edward A. and Hermena Hancock Kelly Fellow in Public Finance at Rice University's James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy.

George R. Zodrow is Allyn R. and Gladys M. Cline Chair of Economics and Rice Scholar, Baker Institute for Public Policy, at Rice University.

Table of Contents

Contributors ix

List of Figures xi

List of Tables xv

Preface xix

Overview 1

1 Directions for Fiscal Reform in the United States John W. Diamond George R. Zodrow 3

I Expenditure Programs 17

2 Medical Spending Reform and the Fiscal Future of the United States Mark V. Pauly 19

Discussion Vivian Ho 54

Discussion Andrew J. Rettenmaier 64

3 Social Security's Financial Outlook and Reforms: An Independent Evaluation Jagadeesh Gokhale 77

Discussion Henry J. Aaron 115

Discussion James Alm 121

II Budgetary Issues and Processes 133

4 Federal Budget Reform: Lessons from State and Local Governments Shanna Rose Daniel L. Smith 135

Discussion Joe Barnes 163

Discussion Rudolph G. Penner 171

5 The Challenges of Funding U.S. Deficits and Debt John Kitchen 177

Discussion Peter R. Hartley 214

Discussion John Mutti 228

III Individual and Corporate Income Tax Reform 237

6 Curbing Tax Expenditures Daniel Baneman Joseph Rosenberg Eric Toder Roberton Williams 239

Discussion Edward D. Kleinbard 273

Discussion Thomas S. Neubig 283

7 Raising Revenue from Reforming the Corporate Tax Base Jane G. Gravelle 291

Discussion Rosanne Altshuler 335

Discussion Robert J. Carroll 338

8 The Dynamic Economic Effects of a U.S. Corporate Income Tax Rate Reduction John W. Diamond George R. Zodrow Thomas S. Neubig Robert J. Carroll 343

Discussion Ruud A. de Mooij 387

Discussion Alan D. Viard 397

Index 407

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