Alvin Rabushka

David and Joan Traitel Senior Fellow, Emeritus
Biography: 

Alvin Rabushka is the David and Joan Traitel Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution.

He is the author or coauthor of numerous books in the areas of race and ethnicity, aging, taxation, state and local government finances, and economic development. His books include Politics in Plural Societies (originally published in 1972 and reissued in 2008 with a foreword and epilogue); A Theory of Racial Harmony; The Urban Elderly Poor; Old Folks at Home; The Tax Revolt; The Flat Tax; From Adam Smith to the Wealth of America; Hong Kong: A Study in Economic Freedom; and the New China. Rabushka’s most recent publication is Taxation in Colonial America, which received Special Recognition as a 2009 Fraunces Tavern Museum Book Award.

He has published numerous articles in scholarly journals and in national newspapers. He has consulted for, and testified before, a number of congressional committees. In 1980, he served on President Ronald Reagan's Tax Policy Task Force.

Rabushka's books and articles on the flat tax (with Robert E. Hall) provided the intellectual foundation for numerous flat tax bills that were introduced in Congress during the 1980s and 1990s and the proposals of several presidential candidates in 1996 and 2000. He was recognized in Money magazine's twentieth-anniversary issue "Money Hall of Fame" for the importance of his flat tax proposal in bringing about passage of the Tax Reform Act of 1986. His pioneering work on the flat tax contributed to the adoption of the flat tax in Jamaica, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Russia, Ukraine, Serbia, Romania, Bulgaria, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Georgia, Mongolia, Mauritius, Montenegro, Macedonia, Albania, Kygyzstan, Kazakhstan, Belarus, Trinidad and Tobago, Pridnestrovie (Transdniestra), several Swiss Cantons, and the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina. He has also drafted flat tax plans for Austria, El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico, Argentina, Chile, Canada, and Slovenia.

Rabushka received his AB in Far Eastern studies from Washington University (St. Louis) in 1962, followed by his MA and PhD degrees in political science from Washington University in 1966 and 1968. In 2007, he was honored as a distinguished alumnus of the School of Arts and Sciences at Washington University.

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Recent Commentary

Federal Reserve
Analysis and Commentary

What Would William Jennings Bryan Say To The Federal Reserve Board?

by Alvin Rabushkavia Thoughtful Ideas
Wednesday, September 2, 2015

You shall not crucify mankind on a cross of a one-quarter point (25 basis points) rise in interest rates.

Analysis and Commentary

Who Is Underwriting The Drug Lords?

by Alvin Rabushkavia Thoughtful Ideas
Sunday, August 23, 2015

Buying and selling illicit drugs is a cash business. The medium of payment consists largely of US$100 currency notes.

Analysis and Commentary

Why Greece Got Its Bailout

by Alvin Rabushkavia Thoughtful Ideas
Friday, August 21, 2015

First, Europeans must never be deprived of their sacred right to a summer vacation.  The negotiations that begin early in 2015 were concluded in principle just in time for German Chancellor Angela Merkel and her fellow Eurozone leaders to take their annual summer vacation.

Analysis and Commentary

Coloring Books For Adults

by Alvin Rabushkavia Thoughtful Ideas
Friday, July 17, 2015

Your friendly proprietor was walking from a parking garage at Stanford to his office on the other side of campus when he passed a group of six-year olds wearing orange t-shirts with the words "Media Academy" printed on them.

europe
Analysis and Commentary

It's Time For A Little Honesty On The New Greek Bailout

by Alvin Rabushkavia Thoughtful Ideas
Thursday, July 16, 2015

Greece and its creditors--European Commission members, the European Central Bank, and the IMF--have been playing a game of pretend to oppose austerity and pretend to keep Greece in the Eurozone.

Alvin Rabushka
Analysis and Commentary

Greditors 1, Grebtors 0

by Alvin Rabushkavia Thoughtful Ideas
Monday, July 13, 2015
To expand the universe of new "Gre" words, the EU's humiliating agreement to grant Greece another loan was a total victory for the Greek creditors (Greditors) and a stinging defeat for the humiliated Greek debtors (Grebtors).
Analysis and Commentary

Whatever Happened To The Third Way Of Bill Clinton And Tony Blair?

by Alvin Rabushkavia Thoughtful Ideas
Monday, June 1, 2015

The Third Way is a position that tries to reconcile right-wing and left-wing politics by synthesizing conservative economic and social welfare policies.  It was exemplified by a group of political leaders in the 1990s that included President Bill Clinton, Prime Minister Tony Blair, Chancellor Gerhard Schroder, and leaders of Brazil, Portugal, the Netherlands, and Israel.

british britain england
Analysis and Commentary

Identity Politics In The United Kingdom

by Alvin Rabushkavia Thoughtful Ideas
Friday, May 8, 2015

Diversity failed: Diversity oriented Brits voted for a United Kingdom (Labour, Liberal Democrats). They were trounced. Ethnicity is now the dominant factor in British politics.  Get used to it.
 

Analysis and Commentary

Change The Narrative

by Alvin Rabushkavia Thoughtful Ideas
Thursday, May 7, 2015

A Challenge:  Try going a whole day with the new narrative.

Analysis and Commentary

A Day In The Life of...

by Alvin Rabushkavia Thoughtful Ideas
Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Six words frame almost all written and spoken discourse.  It's increasingly difficult to read an article or hear remarks on any subject that does not include one or more of the six words or their correlates which underpin the contemporary liberal (bigger government) narrative:

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The Russian Economy