Taxes Part 4: Policy Options
So far in this series, I have spoken at length about the complexities and pitfalls tax policy. In Part 1, I argued that we should first ensure taxes are needed before designing a system. In Part 2, I talked about how the economic system is interconnected and that disruptions are […]
Taxes Part 3: Measuring Success
In part 1, I spoke about why taxes are necessary in an economy. In part 2, I discussed how an economy functions and how taxation impacts an economy in general terms. Now, in part 3, I will discuss a little more deeply how to measure a successful tax policy. In […]
Taxes Part 2: Tax Implications on the Economy
Before we can have a meaningful discussion about tax policy, let me briefly describe the way an economy functions. Until that foundation is laid, the impacts of taxation cannot be fully understood. The Bucket Analogy A classic metaphor of an economy is to visualize a bucket of water. The level […]
Taxes Part 1: Why Tax?
When it comes to tax strategy, from the view of any level of government, we must think about what we are trying to achieve. Generally speaking, tax policy has one of three goals. First, to raise revenues to pay for core services that benefit the public at large. Second, to […]
Times are Changing
Our economy is the strongest it’s ever been, and is about to get better. At the same time, our economy is broken, and it’s about to get worse. How can this paradoxical reality be true? Simple, we no longer have one economy. We have two. And all indications point to […]
The Alaskan Case of Dutch Disease
We all dream about what we would do if a couple million dollars fell into our laps. It turns out, most of those stories don’t work out the way we would think. Lottery winners don’t always make the best decisions. Instead, they buy luxurious houses and cars, and go on […]
How Profitable Was Alaska’s North Slope?
In 1977, the monumental achievement known as the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System (TAPS) was completed. It was the largest, most complex, and most expensive engineering feat of its time. As we celebrate its 40th birthday, we hear heart warming stories about the construction days, we remember the blood, sweat, and tears […]