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Free Lunch Thinking

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Published: January 2021
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Author: Tom Bergin
Category: /
BIC Subject: Welfare economics
Published By: Random House Uk
 
Published: 19-Jan-2021
Format: Paperback, 320 pages, 0x0mm
ISBN: 9781847942746
Stock Code: 7942746
Product Description
 
Over the past few decades, certain economic theories have achieved the status of fundamental economic truths among many of the world's governments- that high spending is always dangerous, for example; that taxing corporations less makes them more productive; that the way to stop people doing things you don't want them to do (drinking, smoking and so) on is to make them pay more for the privilege.

In Free Lunch Thinking economist and journalist Tom Bergin takes ten of the most prevalent economic mantras and assesses how they play out in practice in the real world. He studies the Irish experience with free trade to establish whether open markets are always desirable. He scrutinises the US belief that high tax rates lead to lower tax revenue (the 'Laffer curve'). He looks at Italy's flirtation with the view that employment must be wholly flexible if jobs are to be created. And he considers the realities of the 'big' vs 'small' government debate in countries that range from Brazil to Sweden to Japan. Again and again, he shows how common assumptions are rarely rooted in observed outcomes, and how countries frequently pursue economic courses that have more to do with faith than facts. His book both challenges lazy thinking and sets out a path for more considered future.Over the past few decades, certain economic theories have achieved the status of fundamental economic truths among many of the world's governments- that high spending is always dangerous, for example; that taxing corporations less makes them more productive; that the way to stop people doing things you don't want them to do (drinking, smoking and so) on is to make them pay more for the privilege.

In Free Lunch Thinking economist and journalist Tom Bergin takes ten of the most prevalent economic mantras and assesses how they play out in practice in the real world. He studies the Irish experience with free trade to establish whether open markets are always desirable. He scrutinises the US belief that high tax rates lead to lower tax revenue (the 'Laffer curve'). He looks at Italy's flirtation with the view that employment must be wholly flexible if jobs are to be created. And he considers the realities of the 'big' vs 'small' government debate in countries that range from Brazil to Sweden to Japan. Again and again, he shows how common assumptions are rarely rooted in observed outcomes, and how countries frequently pursue economic courses that have more to do with faith than facts. His book both challenges lazy thinking and sets out a path for more considered future.
Tom Bergin has reported on the energy industry for over twelve years, having previously worked as an oil broker. He is in charge of Reuters's coverage of the oil industry in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and his work has been published in The New York Times, The Times, The Wall Street Journal, International Herald Tribune, The Globe and Mail and the Shanghai Daily, as well as in dozens of newspapers and magazines around the world. He is a regular television and radio commentator, appearing on CNBC, ITV, the BBC and other outlets as far away as New Zealand. In 2013, he was named Business Journalist of the Year at the British Press Awards.

Apart from the oil industry, Tom has reported on financial scandals, including the rise and fall of Enron, environmental issues, EU politics and terrorist attacks. He lives in London with his wife, a former Reuters reporter turned investment banker, and two young sons.