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The Fiscalization of Social PolicyHow Taxpayers Trumped Children in the Fight Against Child Poverty$
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Joshua T. McCabe

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780190841300

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190841300.001.0001

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From the Era of Easy Finance to Permanent Austerity

From the Era of Easy Finance to Permanent Austerity

Chapter:
(p.52) 3 From the Era of Easy Finance to Permanent Austerity
Source:
The Fiscalization of Social Policy
Author(s):

Joshua T. McCabe

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190841300.003.0003

Chapter 3 covers the transition from the “era of easy finance” to the “era of permanent austerity,” when macroeconomic changes reinforced logics. The onset of stagflation across the developed world led to new and intense economic pressures on families. Most scholars of this period focus on the confusion policymakers faced as the Keynesian consensus broke down and they were forced to recalibrate monetary and fiscal policy. Policymakers also faced uncertainty in how to deal with inflation-induced erosion of tax and social benefits for families. In countries with family allowances, like Canada and the UK, policymakers and the public traced these pressures to the erosion of family allowances. Because the US had no family allowance, policymakers and the public instead traced these pressures to the erosion of dependent exemptions in the tax system. In doing so, they reinforced the dominant logic of appropriateness that lay behind policy responses to the problem of inflation in each country.

Keywords:   inflation, austerity, policy drift, 1970s, tax indexation, tax revolt, Earned Income Tax Credit, Child Tax Credit, Family Income Supplement

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