Alvin Rabushka

David and Joan Traitel Senior Fellow, Emeritus
Biography: 

Alvin Rabushka is the David and Joan Traitel Senior Fellow, Emeritus 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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Say It Ain’t So Joe, Say It Ain’t So!

by Alvin Rabushkavia Thoughtful Ideas
Thursday, March 14, 2019

In 1919, a gambling syndicate led by Arnold Rothstein bribed players on the Chicago White Sox to throw the World Series to the Cincinnati Reds. This became known as the Black Sox scandal. Gambling on baseball remains so abhorrent that to this day Pete Rose, who had the most hits in baseball history, but who gambled on the outcome of games, has been blocked from Baseball’s Hall of Fame.

Analysis and Commentary

North America Is Much Richer Than Latin America. Is This Fact Relevant For Immigration Policy?

by Alvin Rabushkavia Thoughtful Ideas
Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Economists measure gross domestic product per capita (at purchasing power parity, PPP) as the value of all final goods and services produced within a country in a given year divided by the average (or mid-year) population for the same year.

 
 
Analysis and Commentary

Immigrants, Economic Growth, And Job Creation

by Alvin Rabushkavia Thoughtful Ideas
Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Forty-four million plus immigrants constitute over 14% of the U.S. population, the highest share since 14.8% in 1890 and 14.7% in 1910 The current percentage is triple that of the low of 4.7% in 1970. Every year a million immigrants obtain lawful resident status in the U.S. Half of all children born in the U.S. are offspring of immigrants.

Analysis and Commentary

The Flat Tax In Retreat

by Alvin Rabushkavia Flat Tax
Saturday, February 23, 2019

The flat tax movement peaked at 40 countries. Beginning in 2009, the following countries added a second (or more) higher rate(s) on upper-income households, with two adding a second lower rate.

Carbon Tax and Carbon Dividend To Combat Global Climate Change

by Alvin Rabushka
Friday, February 22, 2019

Thirty-four hundred economists and counting, including 4 former chairs of the Federal Reserve, 27 Nobel Laureates, 15 former chairs of the Council of Economic Advisers, and 2 former secretaries of the treasury, have signed a statement proposing a carbon tax to combat global climate change.

Analysis and Commentary

Inequality: The New Growth Industry In Higher Education

by Alvin Rabushkavia Thoughtful Ideas
Thursday, February 21, 2019

Taxation has jumped to the forefront of 2020. Democrats and their intellectual allies, including the mega-rich themselves, are calling for a blizzard of higher taxes on the rich and wealthy.

Analysis and Commentary

Diversity, Part 8. Summing It Up

by Alvin Rabushkavia Thoughtful Ideas
Thursday, February 14, 2019

Demography is Diversity. Diversity is being driven by demography. The dramatic change in the U.S. population from 88.3% White in 1940 to a projected 42.6% White in 2060 (Whites will cease being a majority sometime around 2042-45) must necessarily change the composition and leadership of nearly every American organization and institution.

Analysis and Commentary

Diversity, Part 7. The Who, What, Why, When, Where, And How

by Alvin Rabushkavia Thoughtful Ideas
Wednesday, February 13, 2019

In 1967, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that marriage across racial lines was nationally legal.  That year, only 3% of newlyweds married a spouse of a different race or ethnicity.  The percentage increased almost six-fold to 17% in 2015.

Analysis and Commentary

Diversity, Part 6. The Who, What, When, Where, Why, And How

by Alvin Rabushkavia Thoughtful Ideas
Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Diversity and Inclusion are both process and outcome.  The process of Diversity is a steady increase in the number of underrepresented minorities (URM) and women in all organizations (e.g., higher education, media, business, non-profits, government).  The process of Inclusion requires an increase in the number of URM and women in the higher echelons, the decision-making levels, of organizations.  These two processes, to achieve full Diversity and Inclusion, should continue until a reasonable approximation of parity is achieved, namely, half for women and proportional for URM to their share of the overall population.

Analysis and Commentary

Does America Need More Immigrants? America Does Not Need More Immigrants? That Is The Question!

by Alvin Rabushkavia Thoughtful Ideas
Thursday, January 31, 2019

Proponents of immigration, legal and/or illegal, contend that America needs more immigrants from all walks of life. We need more hi-tech immigrants to lead the world in innovation. We need more lo-tech immigrants to do the jobs Americans won’t do. We need more mid-tech immigrants to fill the service sector jobs that are vacant. America is suffering from a labor shortage. The number of posted vacancies exceeds the number of job-lookers.

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