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Jonathan Chait vs. Steve Moore On The Capital Gains Tax


It is usually informative to watch two people involved in a heated intellectual discussion - especially when the two people involved represent different ideologies and political persuasions. Quite often, as a result of the discussion, a lot of truth comes out that the onlooker would not have known about had they simply listened to both parties articulate their positions - unopposed. The information that comes out usually reveals the shortcomings of the positions of both sides and quite often opens up third and fourth avenues of study to explore. This is exactly what I experienced reading the recent exchange between Steve Moore, contributing editor of the conservative National Review and Jonathan Chait of the moderate New Republic.

The subject of their exchange was the capital gains tax and I found their arguments to be simultaneously weak, persuasive, silly, humorous, complex but ultimately informative. I think their exchange provides a good starting point for those who are interested in learning more about the tax and its impact on economic growth and tax revenues.

I quite often find that Black opinion leaders that claim to love or hate the capital gains tax - depending upon whether they are liberal or conservative - really don't know much about it or how it really affects the economy. Nor do they seem to be sure of how it affects the poorest Americans. Hopefully this type of dialogue will help.

Who knows? Maybe we can start a similar dialogue in the Black community. Anyone game?

Jonathan Chait's argument: http://www.thenewrepublic.com/072400/chait072400.html

Steve Moore's most recent reply: http://www.nationalreview.com/rapid/rapid071700.html


Cedric Muhammad

Wednesday, July 19, 2000

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