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How do governments justify their choice of tax policy? What are the arguments for and against the choices they make? Are there common trends in the tax policy choices of OECD countries? This book provides a unique guide to tax policies pursued by the governments of OECD countries by assessing recent policies, offering a thorough critique of their justification and looking at actual examples of policy choice. The authors give an overview of post-war tax developments, addressing in detail topics such as the dynamics of tax revenues and public sector developments. They go on to examine the arguments for and against governments' main tax policy choices, looking at personal income tax, social security contributions, business taxes, consumption taxation and taxes on wealth, capital gains, and property. They rigorously examine arguments used by governments to justify certain policy choices, providing an objective evaluation of both the valid and invalid arguments for the choicesmade with regard to domestic taxation. In addition to a thorough critique of recent tax policies, the book looks at the actual tax choices of 25 of the thirty OECD countries and aims to identify the similarities and the differences between them. The authors draw on these real examples and on their considerable experience in assessing possibilities for future tax systems. The book will be of special interest to academics and students in the field of public finance, national and international tax policymakers, politicians, and journalists.
This volume takes a critical look at the gender of tax policy around the world. Contributors based in eight different countries examine the profound effects that gender norms and practices have had in shaping tax law and policy, and how taxation in turn impacts upon the possibilities for equality along gender, race, class, sexuality and other lines. Chapters explore how the gendered fiscal state might be theorised; how structural choices about rates and bases in tax policy design contribute to gender inequality; how tax policy affects family configurations and perceptions of what constitutes family; how fiscal systems impact on savings and wealth accumulation by women and men; and the role of different policy-making processes and institutions in occluding and sometimes challenging these patterns. Most significantly, perhaps, the book explores these questions in an international frame, traversing countries and continents. The conclusion: fiscal policy has deep rooted, long standing gender implications that affect virtually every aspect of our social, political, and economic lives whether we live in Canada, Australia or Kenya.
This book explores one of the most significant trends in the evolution of global tax systems by asking how, within less than half a century, the value-added tax (VAT) has risen from relative obscurity to become one of the world's most dominant revenue instruments. Despite its significance, very little is known about why so many countries have adopted the VAT and, in particular, why different countries adopt the types of VAT that they do. The popular mythology provides that the merits of the VAT have underpinned its global spread; however, this book contends that much scholarship confuses the question of why the VAT has risen to dominance with the issue of what makes a good VAT. This book combines policy and legal analysis to propose a new way of understanding the rise of this important revenue instrument so as to better reflect the realities of the VATs that are actually implemented.
This is a very important and immense book. . . Single-handedly, Smits has reviewed and checked this immense work to bring it to its final high standard in quality and accuracy and selection of laws. The Criminal Lawyer This is a very important and immense book. . . The Elgar Encyclopedia of Comparative Law is a treasure-trove of honed knowledge of the laws of many countries. It is a reference book for dipping into, time and time again. It is worth every penny and there is not another as comprehensive in its coverage as Elgar s. I highly recommend the Elgar Encyclopedia of Comparative Law to all English chambers. This is a very important book that should be sitting in every university law school library. Sally Ramage, The Criminal Lawyer The entries are written in a lucid and accessible style, with appropriate references being given for further research. All in all, a substantial work which will delight enthusiasts of comparative law. The Commonwealth Lawyer The breadth of topics plus the bibliographies allows a reader to use the Elgar Encyclopedia as an initial entry into a field of law, a specific topic, or a legal system. . . Any law library, business library, large public library, or academic library supporting the study of international law or international business will want to have [it] in its collection. . . This work is highly recommended. Ladyjane Hickey, American Reference Books Annual Comparative law is the comparison of law and legal systems from around the world. At one time it was a field of limited interest and academic participation. However, increasing globalization, whether of commerce or culture, makes it imperative that citizens learn more about the law of other countries. That is the premise of this comprehensive new research tool designed for general readers. Some 70 articles address topics as diverse as accident compensation, legal culture, the European Civil Code, and the law and legal systems of a selected set of nations. . . This single-volume work provides an excellent comprehensive overview of the current state of affairs in comparative law. Highly recommended. Lower-level undergraduates and above; general readers. J.E. Stephens, Choice The timely publication of this encyclopedia reflects what is happening [in international law] and, in a field where works (even student textbooks) are often expensive, it comes at an attractive price. Stuart Hannabuss, Reference Reviews The Elgar Encyclopedia of Comparative Law looks set to become an indispensable source for the ever increasing body of lawyers needing accurate information on the structure and working of foreign systems as well as on points of a substantive law. Edited by Professor Jan Smits of Maastricht University the Encyclopedia is the work of an extremely strong international team of noted specialists. Comprising articles on the nature, methodology and focus of comparative law, on the legal systems of particular jurisdictions and on matters of substantive law, the work should be a very significant contribution to the literature. It seems likely that the contributions on the comparative state of affairs in particular fields of substantive law will be an especially valuable aspect of the work. There will be 37 such articles from accident compensation to unjustified enrichment with mistake , personality rights , product liability and transfer of moveable property only a sample of what the work will offer. Casting over this list one is again struck by the wealth of established expertise brought together in the Encyclopedia. I have little doubt that I can speak for the worldwide community of comparative lawyers in saying that the Elgar Encyclopedia of Comparative Law is eagerly awaited. David L. Carey Miller, University of Aberdeen, UK Comparative law is moving swiftly from a long infancy to teenage maturity, and Jan Smits provides the essential tonic. In this outstanding work he has gathered together leading scholars, each his/her o
This paper examines the relative merits of two dominant economic instruments for reducing pollution—”green” taxes and tradable permits. Theoretically, the two instruments share many similarities, and on balance, neither seems preferable to the other. In practice, however, most countries have relied more on taxes than on permits to control pollution. The analysis suggests a number of lessons to be learned from country experiences regarding the design and implementation of both instruments. While many, particularly European countries, currently have long-term programs involving environmental taxes, a willingness to experiment with tradable permits seems to be growing, especially given the Kyoto protocol emission targets.
As a domestic policy advisor to Ronald Reagan, Bruce Bartlett was one of the originators of Reaganomics, the supply-side economic theory that conservatives have clung to for decades. In The New American Economy, Bartlett goes back to the economic roots that made Impostor a bestseller and abandons the conservative dogma in favor of a policy strongly based on what's worked in the past. Marshalling compelling history and economics, he explains how economic theories that may be perfectly valid at one moment in time under one set of circumstances tend to lose validity over time because they are misapplied under different circumstances. Bartlett makes a compelling, historically-based case for large tax increases, once anathema to him and his economic allies. In The New American Economy, Bartlett seeks to clarify a compelling and way forward for the American economy.
Marginal income tax rates in advanced industrial countries have fallen dramatically since the mid-1980s, but levels and progressivity of income taxation continue to differ strongly across countries. This study offers a new perspective on both observations. It blends theoretical inquiry with focused quantitative analysis and in-depth investigation of seven countries: Germany, Australia and New Zealand as well as Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden. The Politics of Income Taxation highlights the equity-efficiency tradeoffs that structure the politics of income taxation, and analyses how income taxes are embedded in broader tax systems. It explains the limited but enduring importance of political parties and democratic institutions. Finally, the study paints a nuanced picture of the role of globalisation and thus sheds light on the pros and cons of tax coordination at European and international levels.

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