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tv   Leadership Program of the Rockies - Arthur Laffer  CSPAN  March 30, 2018 9:33pm-10:26pm EDT

9:33 pm cases. economist arthur laffer has advised president reagan and margaret thatcher. recently he helped advise a tax bill. he talks about tax policy and the economy added an event hosted by the leadership program of the rockies. this is 50 minutes. i also had the privilege of introducing a great speaker that we have here for lunch. dr. art laffer. e is the author of trumpinomcs he is part of investment
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management firm utilizing diverse investment strategies. his economic acumen and theuence has earned him england of the father of supply-side economics. he was the rains behind the most recent tax cut bill that we have seen. who has gotten their thousand dollars bonus out of that? of laffer was a member president reagan's advisory board for both of his terms. he also advised margaret thatcher in the u.k.. he has years of experience and helped and has distinguish him in the business community. he has been widely acknowledged for his economic achievements. if you have not taught one, i believe there are several on sale next door. go check them out.
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please give a hand. we are honored to have him here. please help me welcome dr. laffer. [applause] dr. laffer: you didn't have to stop on my account? [laughter] you are talking about my favorite topic. me. [laughter] if i can be serious for a second, being here today and seeing all of you and the organization and the leadership program, you guys are awesome. it is amazing what you do and what you can do. when i look at the challenge of what is going to happen in colorado and other states around here, you've got your work cut out for you, but i can't imagine any group more fit and rested
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and ready to take on the challenge than all of you. i am blown away i help wonderful you guys are. steve moore told me you were great, but i didn't believe him. now i do. if i can, let me start off and i will have some fun with you. i left california 13 years ago. to nashville, tennessee can. can any of you guess why would do such a thing? taxes? it is not rocket surgery. [laughter] i hope i am not going way over your heads on this, but if you have two locations a and b, if you raise taxes in be in lower them in a, producers and manufacturers will move from a -- am i going way over your heads?
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i gave a talk up at harvard couple months ago and one of the professors that i still don't get it, why did you leave? statuteree years, the of limitations is gone and i can now go back and enjoy california and not paid the taxes. it is still a shift. there is one thing i do miss. i do miss a little bit about california. council the governor's of economic advisers which is a part-time job. i was on with george schultz and martin read them. it was sort of fun. when he turned to the dark side i got out of dodge. i just left. but i miss his wit and charm. he's not very good governor. he's probably not a very good person as you know from the other stories, but he is a very witty and charming guy.
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i had met him a number of times casually. asked me to come up and have breakfast with him when he was running for governor. heardent up and i had that he had a very sharp wit. so what i decided was my best defense was a big strong offense. so i went up and we had a breakfast outside. said i can tell you how delighted i am. i'm over the moon to have with you. when i found out that your two advisors were wilson and buff and, i was over the moon with delight that you had wilson and buffett as your different advisors until i found out that it wasn't all went and jimmy. when i heard it was warren and and he said ha ha.
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said why iser, he it all you clear thinking economists are so short. where does that come from? little bitty tiny man. you are you remind me of danny devito. i start with him in twins. that is the part of california i do miss. let me, though to economics. economics is all about incentives. that is what economics is about. incentives. on the freeway. why do we do that? to get them to stop speeding. we tax smokers. why do we do that? to get them to stop smoking. why do we taxin
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people who earn income? [laughter] people who employ other people? why do we tax businesses that make wonderful products at very low cost and have lots and lots of profits? the answer is of course, we don't tax people who have high incomes to get them to stop earning income. we don't tax people who employ other people. to get them to stop employing other people. we don't tax companies that make toderful products at low, get them to stop. we don't. we tax them to get the money to run government. but let me make it very clear, do not for a moment should you believe that the same consequences occur. tax income earners,
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employers, and profits, as it occur when you tax speeders and smokers. it affects output and employment and production. [applause] it is really true that there are consequences to taxation. you cannot tax and economy into rough parity. a poor person cannot spend himself into wealth. i am not going over your heads. after listening to this, you should be lecturing me. work andx people who you pay people who don't work, do i need to say the next sentence to you? don't be surprised if you find a lot of people not working. jack kemp what it beautifully.
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you can't love jobs and hate job creators. it just doesn't work that way. if you tax rich people and give the money to poor people you will get lots and lots of work people. and no rich people. the dream in america has always been to make the poor richer, not to make the rich or. dream is always build up the base. when you look at the from the standpoint of states, which your organization is spectacular at. , they of you saw my book wealth of states it is a fun book. we have 50 states and each of them there's something like 80 counties. each of those counties there are two or three municipalities. we have a data set that is unbelievable in this country. of repository of information watching the testing of all of
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these economic models here in the u.s.. if you talk to legislators or governors or people involved and state policies, they don't have any idea what the rest of the nation or this repository. what we tried to do was bring it all together. to let people have a full view. if something can be done, believe me it probably has been. in 1964 or maine in 1963. with a beautiful repository of information. if i can, in the first chapter of the book and go through it with you for fun. i titled it he fall from grace. there are 11 states in the united states that have introduced the income tax. these are not weird states.
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the first one was 1961 in west virginia. the last one was connecticut under a republican. i'm also a yearly republican. i don't believe in that. that was 1991. it includes main, rhode island, new jersey, pennsylvania and ohio. these are allnois rather normal wonderful states. what we did in this book is sit in to the day and year they introduced the income tax and we looked at all of these 11 states and what happened to them in the three years prior to introducing the tax. are all of you with me on this? they all did it in different years. we've looked at the primary metrics relative to the u.s.. population, employment, growth state product. personal income, tax revenues.
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we looked at all of those metrics three years prior to introducing income tax and then we looked at the same metrics and the last three years. if you look at these 11 states, you'll follow what i'm doing. if you look at these 11 states, everything the one of those states without one exception declined relative to the rest of the nation after introducing the income tax in their state. not one exception. in every single metric. they declined relative to the rest. includes state and local tax revenues relative to the rest of the nation. every one of the state's decline. some of them declined by a lot. i don't know if any of you know the state of michigan. there was a guy named george romney. mitts dad. he introduced the income tax in
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michigan. in the three years prior, michigan was 5.2% of the total economy of the u.s.. 2.7% of the u.s.. that is a catastrophic decline. was a was a kid, detroit vacation. [laughter] it sounds crazy. we were from cleveland so what did we know. back then, detroit was the paris of north america. the train station in detroit was the taj mahal. look at the pictures. it was incredible. was950 detroit's population 1.8 5 million. today they are below 600,000. the same thing is true of ohio and all of these other states. look at the states.
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illinois, connecticut. the one i like most of all was new jersey. i want to give you a flavor of new jersey. in 1965, new jersey had no income tax nor sales tax. think of it. it was the fastest-growing state in the nation. people from everywhere were moving and they had a balanced budget. 12 years ago, when my student in governor of new jersey truth in lending, transparency, see student. [laughter] after seeing the shenanigans of mf global, i am not sure he was a sea. had one of the.
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people were leaving new jersey like rats off a sinking ship. this, theook at economic metrics are clear. i ask myself the question, why would anyone put in an income tax with this type of background if you just opened your eyes, you can see it. why would they do this? the answer is pretty simple. on intelligence he said, i don't care about your economics, i want a civilized society. i want museums and good schools and i'm willing to pay the extra taxes to get it. so i decided, why don't we look at what happened. we have these 11 states and we have incredibly detailed information about the provision of public services. i looked at each of the states.
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by category, i looked at the highways police, fires and schools. all of are 50 to 55% of the state and local spending. k-12 and junior colleges. so i went back and looked. with input data and output data. we have the scores from the department of education looking at fourth grade and eighth grade reading and math. with wonderful data. if you look at the 11 states, eight of those 11 states that putting the income tax inclined in the provision of public services relative to the rest of the nation. three states improved, but the improved by a little bit. of the 8, 5 had a collapse in the provision of public services. it is a tragic outcome of what has happened. economics has consequences. when you look at the federal level today, i will just touch
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on the federal level with you here today. we have just had a tax bill passed in the u.s. which was passed last year at the very end of last year. the u.s. corporate tax rate 2017 was 35% in 2013 -- was the highest statutory tax rate. we have not changed that rate since 1992 when george h w bush raise it from 34% to 35%. it has been the same since 1992 all the way to the present. in the year 2000, with that same rate, we were seventh highest in the oecd. what happened there was that the oecd members in the world have reduced their corporate statutory tax rate since 2000. with the single exception of hungary. they raised it from 18% to 19%.
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we are the only country that did not. if you look at the u.s. again in 2017, we had a global tax system rather than territorial. the u.s. was the single country in the oecd that had a global system rather than a territorial system. just to give you a flavor of what that means, if a u.s. company is competing with a german company in ireland and both make $100 in profit, both companies were obligated to pay the irish government will .5%. for the german company that was the end. for the u.s. company, after paying 12.5%, they were then required to pay an additional 22.5% to the u.s. government in addition to the 12.5%. this bill gets rid of the global
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tax system and territoriality is now the thing for the u.s. here. [laughter] [applause] it is huge. corporateopped her tax rate from 35% to 21%. that is an amazing drop. we are in the middle of the pack of the oecd. there is a huge improvement. system, at the u.s. well you see the statutory rate is 35%, companies had that statutory rate of an income of $75,000. get -- right you away. if you look the effective tax rate on u.s. corporations in 2017, it was 13 or 13.5%. that doesn't mean that if the tax rate they pay. what that tells you is the percentage of their income that they shelter. have gotten used
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to this tax rate and have been able to shelter through shelters and changing corporate forms and tax evasion and other ways haved to this tax rate and have been able to, they have been able to shelter something like two thirds of their tax base. 35 to 20, there will be a lot less sheltering and a lot more returns coming through on the corporate tax. if you look at this, there are other benefits that will come through. in the tax bill itself, we also dropped the highest marginal personal income rate from 39.6 237 percent. serious drop. the tax rate was dropped on pass-through corporations. or subchapter s. anything but a sea -- anything but a c-corp. we drop the personal income tax rate. we put through a 20% deduction.
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the sect of tax rates on tax through companies has gone from 39.6%. when you look at the deduction, in conjunction with the deregulation that this administration has put through, my belief is that you have really increased the after-tax returns on economic growth output and employment. if you look at the economics literature, there are two taxes that have been a normal as adrenaline right to the heart of the economy. first and foremost today is the corporate tax rate in the second is the highest personal income tax rate. both have been dropped dramatically. my guess is when you look at this bill, and when you look at what will happen with this along with 100% expensing of capital purchases for the next five years, you will see an enormous
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change in economic growth. i want to give you a flavor of what type of economic growth you can count on or expect. in 1981d a tax bill with a real president. [applause] you know who i mean, don't you? won the that he nomination, i don't know any of you remember the clouds parted. the sun shone forth on the planet. the fields turned green and the animals multiplied and the trees blossomed. children danced in the streets and reagan won the nomination. at that bill, we made one mistake in the 1981 act. we faced in the tax cuts. know they're going to cut tax rates next year, what do you do this year? you defer all of the income you possibly can.
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that is what happened. when we cut the tax rate in 1981, they didn't take effect until january 1 1983. in 1981 and 82, the u.s. went into a big spiral straight down. reagan's popularity which was in the 45% range when he won the election skyrocketed after he was shot to 75 or 80%. that's when we got the bill passed. then the popularity dropped like a stone. in november 1980 two, his favorables were 35%. the republicans lost seats in the house and senate. 1983, thatuary 1, tax cut hit. can any of you imagine what the growth rate what the real gdp growth rate was in the u.s. from
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january 1, 1983 to june 30, 1984? that's a year and a half. 18 months. the total growth in that year and a half? 12%. u.s. economy grew at an average annualized growth rate at 8% per and him for a year and a half. the growth rate under jfk for his whole time until the tax cuts came in, over five years growth rate was well over 5% for five years. it's amazing. since that tax cut took effect, the growth rate was over 5% for the rest of his term. you had growth rates that were amazing. my guess is you will see growth rates in the u.s. increasing dramatically. i would guess they will increase
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up to the 4% range for the next several years. they might even go higher. estimate for the first quarter of 2018 is 5.4%. with these types of growth rates you will see enormous changes in the overall u.s. economy. when they hit with us in the white house in 1983, remember we lost the election. that 12% growth that solves a lot of problems. in the election in november of 1984 it was a close call. [laughter] but we only 149 out of 50 states. guy.le is a great he was not a that candidate, it is hard running against god. [laughter] 1986, weme we got to
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dropped the highest marginal from 50%x rate in 1986 to 28%. the corporate rate from 46 to 34%. we also, just make sure no one was confused about what her intentions were, we raised the lowest rate. that will teach you to be a low income worker. just joking. we were moving toward a flat tax. towent from 14 brackets down 2. the 86 act was revenue neutral. can you imagine that bill today? i don't think there is a republican after that would vote for it today. let me tell you the vote in 1986. it passed with a vote
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of 97-3. there were three senators against at all three democrats. i tell you who voted for it. mr. left of california. ohio voted for it. my next-door neighbor down the street. al gore voted for it. a great guy. i just didn't like some of his economics. just last week we had a big snow in nashville. all of my neighbors and i got a big dump truck and loaded it was no and dumped it in his front lawn. no we didn't. just kidding. just kidding. look at who else did.
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no bradley voted for it. connecticut, he voted for it. the senator from delaware. joe biden. he voted for it. teddy kennedy voted for it. barbara boxer voted for it. harry reid voted for it. dick durbin voted for it. charlie wrangle voted for it. chuck schumer voted for it. once a growth model starts, believe me it takes off. to get prosperity, there are five a sick principles of prosperity. number one, a low rate rod based flat tax. [applause] rateeason you want a low to provide the least incentives to people to evade avoid or
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otherwise not report textile income. the reason you want a broad-based is you provide the least number of places for people to put their income to avoid taxation. a low rate broad-based flat tax is economic prosperity. we are moving there. there will be a lot less evasion and sheltering. there will be a lot less of people moving companies offshore. all of that will happen with the trump tax bill. [applause] secondly, low rate broadcast. spending restraint. my college and dear friend elton freedom lectured everyone all the time that government spending is taxation. it is. it really is. sound money. there is nothing that can put
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the economy to its knees sooner and faster than unsound monetary policy. leads to excessively high interest rates or excessively low interest rates. markets needs to clear an instant rates need to be market clearing. not too high and not too low. number four you need minimal regulation. all of us fully understand that we need regulation. you can wake up in the morning one day and ride on the right-hand side of the road and the next day think you will go on the left hand. you need regulation. but what you want to make sure is that the regulations don't go beyond a specific purpose at hand. they will create political collateral economic damage. regulatory reforms that rationalizes regulatory policy
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so it is not anti-economic growth. lastly, free trade. there are some things we do better than foreigners. there are some things they do better than us. we and they would be foolish in the extreme if we didn't sell foreigners those products we make better than they do in exchange for those products they make better than we do. it is a win win. comparative advantage. [applause] david ricardo. the way i interpret this administration in washington today is that i do not believe for a moment the donald trump is a protectionist. i could be wrong. i wrong a lot. business has to know the benefits of free trade.
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especially anyone who has imported two wives. [laughter] just joking again. they understand free trade. it is essential. i referenced a minute ago my i referenced the book that i had written with steve moore. in that, netbook i dedicated it to a man named colin campbell. he wrote the definitive state worker about new hampshire versus vermont. along looked at that book time ago, the name the popped named bob kriegel. the critical foundation funded all of the words that he had
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done. when i saw that name on your , it as one of your trustees had to run over immediately and say hello. helen, it is wonderful to have you here. you keep on the tradition. [applause] i was not able to get away without her harassing. she said, if there were one policy you could put into place what policy would you put into place? i didn't have to think for a second. the problem with the government today is generic. the matter how much you work and fight and do it, you can't solve the system. unless you get the internal immune system working with you and not against you. washington is the incentives are all wrong.
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these people are spending other people's money. movieember the lovely jimmy stewart it? wonderfulh all the help for americans. he comes to washington and works very hard with this beautiful vision of everything and he brings down inflation and brings down interest rates and the stock record stores. people come out of orphanages and have jobs and raise babies. it is wonderful. do remember all of that? and you remember what happened after he did all of that? what happened to his salary? nothing. he was paid just the same. can you imagine his evil twin?
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the bad one. he comes to washington and unemployment and inflation go way up. the stock market collapses and the enemies are coming on store. the kids are all dying in the streets. what happens to that congressperson salary? it stays exactly the same. these people are not incentivized to behave correctly. you got to companies. a and b are identical, these with one difference. and directors own no stock options and are paid. is. very lowe they have salaries and are given stock options and own a lot of stock. which would you rather invest in? the one with the incentives. the problem in washington is these guys are not incentivized. how do you solve that problem? one simple way.
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when you to put in legislation to put politicians on commission. [laughter] [applause] say, you'llng to never solved the problem until these guys are incentivized. if gdp grows it be percent, give them their full salary. if it grows at 4%, double their salary. if it grows at 5%, triple their salary. if it grows at 2%, take it away. if it grows atif it's at 1%, th. they will never vote the way they vote today. [applause] i have no problem whatsoever with politicians making lots of money as long as we do too. it's when they do and we don't that we have a real problem. just to finish off, pasted tease the real president and do all i miss himmean
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terribly. he's to tease him and say sir, as a professor and a phd, i just want to tell user that my professional judgment is that you serve truly are a certifiable genius. sir, i hate to tell you that to some of my colleagues they don't fully concur. in my assessment of your intellectual acumen. in fact, some of my colleagues don't think you're very bright at all. but the one my colleagues and i do agree upon is that you are one unique characteristic is your uncanny ability to select your for processors.
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hills ofllowing on the johnson, nixon, ford, and carter cannot look at. [applause] i will tell you this because it is true. if reagan had been elected in 1976, he would have been a different president and the president who was elected in 1980. he would have been. in all honesty, it took jimmy carter to create ronald reagan. you can'te vein, imagine how great the president is going to be who follows barack obama. thank you. [applause] thank you everybody.
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i don't need water. i'm just fooling. i have no problem. i?id my time right didn't to a. laffer has consented few questions. we have a couple microphones. make sure your question is in form of a question. if i don't like it i will pretend i don't hear it and go to the next. the toughest class in its history. i think it is ironic that we are here because a mile and a half south and 2000 vertical feet of wellnne mountain is the rogers shrine. given that we are often facing
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liberals who are cynical and pessimistic and don't believe that people can think for themselves or earned their own keep and that it is all these greedy corporations that are sucking up all of these prophets, how do we answer them? what recommendations would you give to a logical heartfelt response to somebody that doesn't understand that wealth creates wealth? you just sit down with them and go through what i did with you today. that's all i'm trying to do with you today is -- the second chapter in my book is the nine members of the lord of the rings. as you can guess, i am 78 years old. i didn't think of that title? there are nine states that have no income tax. i compared them with the nine states that have the highest income tax. i looked over a ten-year.
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there is not one single year for the nine states with no income the nine states of the highest income tax. what more do you want? tell me about the wonderful states you can see out there. connecticut. doing well. illinois, i forgot. michigan. what about kentucky? have you looked at any of the states? florida,hem to texas, tennessee, wyoming, nevada. it is fact. without facts, anything is possible. even liberal economics. but the problem is facts don't support their world. what did john f. kennedy do when he was president? he cut the highest income tax rate from 91% to 71%. he cut the corporate rate from 52% to 48%.
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he put in the investment tax credit for the u.s. for the first time in u.s. history. we had phenomenal economic growth in the u.s. budget when into surplus. that is what kennedy did. he got rid of all and he accelerated depreciation as well. look what karting -- harding and coolidge. bill clinton when he came in toxic tax. before, if you were between ages of 65 and 72. you must money. he got rid of that. huge tax cut for the elderly. welfared into law reform.
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biggestn for the capital gains tax cut in history. he dropped the rate from 28% to 20%. even more than that, he got rid of capital gains taxation on owner occupied homes. 125,000 for a couple. the capitally cut gains tax rate to zero on half of the capital stock in the u.s.. spending as aent share of gdp. bill clinton did. he cut it by more than the next three piece time presidents combined. by 3.5 percentage points. is it any wonder we had a boom during that. who would think of a stimulus package as spending. what you think of poor people spending themselves into wealth
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it is on the face of it so stupid. yet they sat there and convince themselves it made sense. this is what we have to do. set them down. you are never going to win if you fight. if you fight, both of you lose. you may lose less than the guy you beat the hell out of. what you both lose. it is far better to convert them and sit down and go through the facts. go through it carefully and look at which states prosper. would you rather be in hong kong or switzerland or italy or greece? which ones have no income tax and which ones have the highest. i think we go to a fact-based model of economics to convince them and bring them around. people deserve the governments they get. i hate to say that. it is our job to lay the case in front of them and if they choose
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to go the other way, god bless them. we must do all we can. i was so awestruck by you people is here i see a group of people really putting it all out to make a difference in this world. congratulations to all of you. you are amazing. shelby do one more question? >> how concerned are you that cuts tookn reagan's effect in 1983, interest rates had begun to dramatically decline in 82. but in 2018, rates are going up. these other economists, i will call them other economists. there is a demand curve and a supply curve. in all of the markets. when interest rates are way too
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high, mortgages become unaffordable and people do not buy homes. rates,u lower interest you can see the improvement coming like we did under reagan. there was a huge boom in the housing market. underwe have a time bernanke and yellen where they have interest rates at zero. let me ask you a serious question. if you have money you want to lend to a less risky person at zero interest rate? there has been a huge shortage of capital to the housing market because interest rates are so low there is no supply of capital. highest rates can be too because of inflation or too low because of quantitative easing and operation twist. that is what happened. there is the exact only locks
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point where the supply of capital and the demand of capital meet and you have the maximum amount of new housing which is what is needed for recovery. my view is we have had way too low interest rates. years, newt 10 housing starts per 10,000 population has been at the lowest level with has ever been in history for the last 10 years. they are all the 10 lowest measures of that account. why? there was no incentive for people to put capital to use in the housing market. the same thing was true before we came in when interest rates were too high. i believe that what we need to have is what is going to happen. interest rates need to seek their natural level for matching supply and demand. i hope that answers your question. you can have regulations. the problem with these guys. iwill finish with one --
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don't mean to go back to the real president all the time, but our group in beverly hills was fun. there were a bunch of people with us. frank sinatra and -- it was cool. it was cool. my dear friend was charlton heston. i got along really well with him. i always remember. do any of you remember the movie the planet of the apes? where he lands in the spacious and he is in his outfit and all of that. he goes to a field full of corn and has all the humanoids jumping around. then there is a net that fires over him. i don't know if it was an orangutan or a chimpanzee or a guerrilla that the wrapped him.
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i'm going to paraphrase my version of that for the economy. is, keep your stinking money cause off my economy you dirty socialist. thank you. [applause] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2017] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit] tim sloan talks about the economy, taxes, and the future of banking. monday night 8 p.m. eastern on c-span.
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this weekend on the c-span networks, saturday at 9:20 p.m. on c-span, a debate on a suit by a same-sex couple on a colorado bakery. from the national constitution center in philadelphia, daniel mark. ofthe current state religious liberty and the u.s. and around the world. saturday on book tv, c-span2 at 10 p.m. eastern on afterwards. sunday at 10 p.m., second lady karen pence and her daughter charlotte share the story of their pet rabbit. on lectures in history,
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professor blake the open on moonshine drivers. sunday at 8 a.m., landscape historian about the annual easter egg role which began in 1878. the changes that have been made along the way. this weekend on the c-span networks. monday on landmark cases, griswold the connecticut. planned parenthood challenge connecticut law banning the prescription and use of birth control. the supreme court ruled that statute to be on constitutional. they established a right to privacy that is still evolving today. watch landmark cases monday and join the conversation.
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#landmarkcases. we have resources on her website for background. the companion book, a link to the national constitution center's interactive constitution and the landmark cases podcast at cases. witnesses included a neonatal doctor, the president of a foster care organization, and mother of two teenage boys who died of drug overdoses. senator lamar alexander chairs the health, education, labor and pensions committee. this is one hour and 45 minutes.


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