Friday, July 18, 2003

# Posted 9:31 PM by Ariel David Adesnik  

POLITICAL CALCULUS: My erstwhile NYC neighbor AG writes in with some further thoughts about partisan politics and free trade:
Here's an alternative hypothesis. The Bush II administration's objective function has one and only one domestic argument -- the average marginal tax rate on the 1,000 wealthiest taxpayers -- and the first and second derivatives of this function in this arguement are large and negative. They'll adopt whatever other policies it takes to decrease the expected future value of this variable through all time. Trade? Who cares as long as we can get tax cut votes out of the Missouri and Michigan delegations. Farm subsidies that keep Africans impoverished? Who cares as long as get concurrence from the Iowa and Nebraska delegations. Free abortion on demand? Maybe, if we really have a chance of getting Hilary and Chuck to help eliminate estate taxes.

This is extreme. But I haven't seen any evidence that would lead me to refute this hypothesis.
Nor have I, nor have I.
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