October 14, 2008

Expanding Laffer

Justin Katz

Close readers will have noted that I did not propose to prove the accuracy of the Laffer curve; rather, my stated intention was to dispute Tom Sgouros's argument that it can't be accurate.

To be honest, I find argumentation over Laffer to be somewhat of a distraction. Clearly, I'm ideologically predisposed to a preference for shrinking government revenue, not enlarging it, although economic growth is the best way in which to do the latter. Our larger concern ought to be the point at which government becomes a detriment to the society in question, and I'd argue that Rhode Island has far surpassed that point.

If cutting taxes only serves to increase the number of employment opportunities and generally raise the financial well-being of Rhode Islanders, then I'm inclined to take the result as good enough. It seems, unfortunately, that many on the progressive side fall into the trap of using government revenue as a gauge for the health of the society.