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November 17, 2019 

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KEMP-ROTH ACT: Officially titled the Economic Recovery Tax Act of 1981, this was a cornerstone of economic policy under President Reagan. The three components of this act were: (1) a decrease in individual income taxes, phased in over three years, (2) a decrease in business taxes, primarily through changes in capital depreciation, and (3) the indexing of taxes to inflation, which was implemented in 1985. This act was intended to address the stagflation problems of high unemployment and high inflation that existed during that 1970s and to provide greater incentives for investment. A primary theoretical justification is found in the Laffer curve relation between tax rates and total tax collections.

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GOVERNMENT INTERVENTION: Actions on the part of government that affect economic activity, resource allocation, and especially the voluntary decisions made through normal market exchanges. Government, by its very nature, is designed to intervene in voluntary market activity. Some of the more common types of government intervention includes taxes, price controls, assorted regulations, and control over government spending. The general justification for government intervention is that voluntary decisions by consumers and businesses fail to achieve efficiency or other goals deemed important by society.

     See also | government | market | market failure | public choice | voluntary exchange | involuntary exchange | tax | price ceiling | price floor | regulation | fiscal policy | regulatory policy | efficiency | economic goals |


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DEADWEIGHT LOSS

The decrease in the sum of consumer surplus and producer surplus that results from the imposition of a tax. When a tax drives a wedge between demand price and supply price it disrupts what otherwise would be an efficient market equilibrium. Inefficiency arises because while a portion of the sum of consumer and producer surplus is merely transferred to government, a portion of this sum also disappears. The part that disappears is the deadweight loss and is an indicator of the inefficiency of the tax.

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