Even more bright ideas from the White House

Geoffrey Lawrence

James Pethokoukis reports that the White House is working hard to relieve you of the burden of personal wealth and opportunity. After meeting fierce resistance on proposals for extraordinary new cap-and-trade energy taxes and income surtaxes for government-run health care this summer, the newest push from the White House may be for a value-added tax. The proposed VAT, as is being discussed by White House advisors, would be in the neighborhood of a $400 billion tax increase per year.

Obama’s lead economic advisor, Larry Summers, is indicating that the additional revenue will be necessary to fund the increasing cost of entitlement programs. Of course, there is also the obvious need to finance continued “stimulus” packages designed to pay off political supporters and government takeovers of the financial and automotive sectors.

Summers has also indicated that he’d like to go after a carbon tax as well. The primary merits of the two new taxes? First, they would take more of your money to be spent on political pet projects and patronage. Second, well … they’re European.

Geoffrey Lawrence

Geoffrey Lawrence

Director of Research

Geoffrey Lawrence is director of research at Nevada Policy.

Lawrence has broad experience as a financial executive in the public and private sectors and as a think tank analyst. Lawrence has been Chief Financial Officer of several growth-stage and publicly traded manufacturing companies and managed all financial reporting, internal control, and external compliance efforts with regulatory agencies including the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.  Lawrence has also served as the senior appointee to the Nevada State Controller’s Office, where he oversaw the state’s external financial reporting, covering nearly $10 billion in annual transactions. During each year of Lawrence’s tenure, the state received the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting Award from the Government Finance Officers’ Association.

From 2008 to 2014, Lawrence was director of research and legislative affairs at Nevada Policy and helped the institute develop its platform of ideas to advance and defend a free society.  Lawrence has also written for the Cato Institute and the Heritage Foundation, with particular expertise in state budgets and labor economics.  He was delighted at the opportunity to return to Nevada Policy in 2022 while concurrently serving as research director at the Reason Foundation.

Lawrence holds an M.A. in international economics from American University in Washington, D.C., an M.S. and a B.S. in accounting from Western Governors University, and a B.A. in international relations from the University of North Carolina at Pembroke.  He lives in Las Vegas with his beautiful wife, Jenna, and their two kids, Carson Hayek and Sage Aynne.