April 14, 2007

fred-thompson.jpg I don't know how credible a "candidate" Fred Thompson really is for the Republican nod, especially considering the revelation of his cancer just recently. However, it is clear he wants to be taken seriously. At least, it appears that way. The problem is that he's also counting on most Americans to not know their history or have anything resembling understanding of principles of economics. That's the only way I can account for him holding up Calvin Coolidge when discussing taxation and economic development.

Barbara at Mahablog has more:

Old hustles never die. Fred Thompson writes in the Wall Street Journal [emphasis added]:

President John F. Kennedy was an astute proponent of tax cuts and the proposition that lower tax rates produce economic growth. Calvin Coolidge and Ronald Reagan also understood the power of lower tax rates and managed to put through cuts that grew the U.S. economy like Kansas corn. Sadly, we just don't seem able to keep that lesson learned.

One of the triumphs of the Coolidge Administration was the passage of his tax program in 1926; the photograph shows him signing it. The Coolidge program "repealed the gift tax, halved estate taxes, substantially cut surtaxes on great wealth, and reduced income taxes for all," it says here. The photo is dated February 26, 1926. Assuming that is accurate, We Now Know that the Stock Market Crash of 1929 was only slightly over three years and seven months away. The Great Depression followed soon after.

Calvin Coolidge's tax program is the bad example that won't die.

Ezra Klein has more...

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