Randall Holcombe Archive

Randall G. Holcombe is Research Fellow at the Independent Institute and DeVoe Moore Professor of Economics at Florida State University. His Independent books include Housing America: Building Out of a Crisis (edited with Benjamin Powell); and Writing Off Ideas: Taxation, Foundations, and Philanthropy in America .
Full Biography and Recent Publications

Partisan Politics Disenfranchises the Minority Party



The House and Senate have each passed their versions of a tax reform bill. Those bills now go to a conference committee consisting of members of the House and Senate to reconcile their (minor) differences so that both houses can vote on and pass the same bill. The conference committee is just a formality....
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Tax Tinkering



It appears the Congress is getting closer to passing a tax reform bill. While there are differences between the current House and Senate versions, they are close enough that it is easy to see that they can be reconciled and tax reform legislation can be passed this year. Reform on the individual income tax...
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The JFK Files



I’ve heard it said that “you never forget where you were when you heard that President Kennedy was shot.” I remember, but most American’s don’t because Kennedy’s assassination was 54 years ago and most Americans weren’t alive then. Like many Americans, I am convinced that Lee Harvey Oswald, the person who shot President Kennedy,...
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Black Lives Matter?



Last year I put up a blog post on the Black Lives Matter movement, saying that the movement had a valid complaint about the excessive and too often fatal use of force against unarmed and too often innocent blacks. I believe I received more comments on that post, both positive and negative, both on...
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Trump’s Tax Reform: On the Right Track



The tax reform proposal offered last week by President Trump and Republicans in Congress would be an improvement over the current system, but more so for corporate income taxes than for individual income taxes. It appears that the biggest advantage the proposal offers individual taxpayers is a simplified tax structure, whereas significant cuts are...
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Sanctuary Cities and Recreational Marijuana



Sanctuary cities deliberately refer to themselves using this confrontational terminology, indicating that they provide a sanctuary for those who are in the country illegally. They do so by refusing to aid the federal government in enforcing federal immigration law. Sanctuary cities could be less confrontational if they dropped the terminology and simply said they...
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Progressive Democracy Works for the 1%



The Occupy Wall Street movement that began in 2011 protested government policies that favored the 1%, the elite, over the 99%, the masses. Their protests were justified. The Wall Street fat cats who owned mortgage-backed securities were bailed out, but homeowners who had lost their jobs and couldn’t pay their mortgages were foreclosed. But...
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The Double Tax on Saving



In an earlier post I argued for expanding tax-deferred retirement accounts because they eliminate the double tax on saving that exists under the current tax system. Here is the basic idea. People earn income and pay income tax on that income. If they save it and then earn interest (or dividends, or capital gains,...
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Tax Reform V: Eliminate the Estate Tax



The estate tax amounts to a penalty on the heirs of those who have accumulated wealth over their lifetimes. It raises less than 1% of federal revenues, so it provides almost no benefit to anybody, but imposes a big cost on a few. There are many ways for the wealthy to avoid the estate...
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Tax Reform IV: Corporate Tax Reform



The United States has one of the highest corporate income tax rates in the world. While both the Obama administration and Trump administration have criticized American companies for moving operations off-shore, and considered a variety of policies for punishing them if they do, a better approach would be to design policies that make it...
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