NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Cato Papers on Public Policy

December 26, 2011

The Cato Institute released its annual volume of original articles on current and critical economic and public policy issues, edited by Jeffrey A. Miron, a senior lecturer in economics at Harvard University and a senior fellow at the Cato Institute.  Each article is written by a recognized national expert, most often a senior member of a university.  The overarching goal of the publication is to provide in-depth, imaginative new research on key economic and public policy matters combined with a range of potential improvements and solutions.

Articles in the volume include:

  • "Can the Treasury Exempt Its Own Companies from Tax? The $45 Billion General Motors Net Operating Loss Carryforward": How the U.S. Treasury used arcane provisions of the tax code to manufacture a tax break for political supporters during the bailout of General Motors, masking the true cost of the bailouts of GM and other firms.
  • "Free to Punish? The American Dream and Harsh Treatment of Criminals": In comparison to many penal systems in the rest of the world, Americans are much harsher in their treatment of criminals. This article looks at the causes, revealing how the American Dream may be to blame.
  • "Competition and Innovation": Analysis of how patents that are easily assigned and strictly enforced for a long period of time do not promote innovation, but instead impede it.
  • "Labor Market Dysfunction during the Great Recession": The impact of mortgage modifications on the labor market recovery, showing that reductions in mortgage payments based on borrowers' current income skews incentives for households to relocate to a stronger labor market and lowers both employment and productivity.

Source: "Cato Papers on Public Policy," Cato Institute, December 2011.

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