Chart of the Day: How Have Republican Tax Cuts Fared Since 1980?

Jonathan Chait complains today that Republicans always justify their claim that tax cuts boost the economy by simply taking credit for the normal economic expansions that happen afterward:

They deemed the Reagan tax cuts to be a growth miracle by starting at the trough of a recession, in 1982, and measuring through the peak of the expansion, in 1990. The 1980s expansion was actually an unremarkable business cycle recovery, but by measuring from the trough to the peak, conservative propaganda transformed it into a miracle.

OK, let’s do just the opposite. Let’s take a look at economic growth after each of the six major tax bills since 1980, but for each one we’ll arbitrarily use the decade following. Everyone gets exactly ten years and that’s that. This is blogging without a net: I have no idea how this is going to turn out, but I promise to post the results regardless of what they look like.

….And here they are:

There you have it. None of this matters, of course, since Republicans pass tax cuts mostly to please their donor class, not due to any macroeconomic evidence that they do much for the economy. Still, at least we got a colorful chart out of the deal.

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Corrupt leaders the world over can (and will) try to shut down the truth, but when the truth has millions of people on its side, you can't keep it down for good. And there's no more powerful or urgent argument for your support of Mother Jones' journalism right now than that. We need to raise about $450,000 to hit our online fundraising budget in these next few months, so please read more from Monika and pitch in if you can.

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