Budget sentences to ponder

The regression coefficient of -0.07 suggests that in countries where revenues as a share of GDP were 10 percentage points lower in 1979, health care spending increased as a share of GDP by 0.7 less in the next 30 years.  This association is consistent with the hypothesis that high tax rates limit the further growth of public contributions to health spending because of the much larger economic costs…and because of political pressures against high tax rates, a result also found in a cross-country study…

That is from the scary paper by Katherine Baicker and Jonathan Skinner, "Health Care Spending Growth and the Future of U.S. Taxes."  (Can anyone find an ungated copy?  Can we all say a hail to James M. Buchanan?)

As for today's announced budget, Kevin Drum serves up some relevant remarks.


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