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This book review of The Good Rich and What They Cost Us originally appeared in the Wall Street Journal on January 16, 2013.
As higher earners tot up the damage of the budget deal, many of them can draw consolation from one bit of news. The 2013 deal doesn't eliminate the charitable deduction. But maybe that particular break for plutocrats should go as well. That is the take-away from "The Good Rich and What They Cost Us," a series of profiles of our rich countrymen down the centuries and their efforts to burnish their reputations with philanthropy or other gestures of ethical concern. "The Good Rich" starts out like a tour through a portrait gallery, describing rather than judging. For much of his narrative, Mr. Dalzell refrains from giving his own opinion explicitly and reports merely that the rich have often blamed themselves for their lapses or oversize good fortune, or that their peers did. But there is another sort of giving that Mr. Dalzell doesn't consider. Charity is a sideshow: What matters about the rich, if we are considering the public good, isn't their charity but their investments—their ideas about what to do with "slimey petroleum" and microchips—and the jobs and activity they create.
Read the full review here.
TARIFF-IED: Trade Talk with Matthew Rooney
This week, trade relations between the U.S. and India are continuing to escalate. Earlier this month, the U.S. stopped granting India special trade privileges by taking away the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) program, and India has responded by enforcing more tariffs of its own. The George W. Bush-SMU Economic Growth Initiative Director Matthew Rooney breaks down the trade conflict: For more information on trade groups and the global economy, visit www.bushcenter.org/scorecard.
How Trade Spreads Holiday Cheer
It is projected that the average American household will spend more than $1,000 during the holidays this year.
Deporting Salvadorans May Lead to Economic Decline
We should think carefully about a policy whose major impacts are likely to be reductions in employment and economic activity here at home, and increased instability and lawlessness along our borders.
Bush Institute's Laura Collins Talks Immigration on Good Morning Texas
Last week, Deputy Director of Economic Growth at the George. W. Bush Institute Laura Collins spoke with Good Morning Texas about immigration myths. During the interview, Collins had the opportunity to set the record straight and address common misconceptions about legal immigrants living in America today. The segment was inspired from facts released earlier this fall by the Bush Institute in the third edition of America's Advantage: A Handbook on Immigration and Economic Growth. Watch the full Good Morning Texas interview here.