Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Some proposals from Brookings

This came across my desk this morning.

Titled "Econonic Growth and Institutional Innvotation: Outlines of a Reform Agenda," the policy monograph by William Galston discusses how our institutional design can affect our economy.

Galston starts from the premise that our economy is hampered by three deficits: fiscal (also known as the US budget deficit), savings (the lack thereof by US citizens) and investments.  He proposes that these be attacked by such things as Commissions that are insulated from the political process, yet still answerable to Congress.  Mandatory individual accounts added to Social Security.  And the creation of a "National Infrastructure Bank" funded with US tax dollars.  Such reforms would be impossible in our current climate, so institutional reforms that will empower centrists must be enacted.

To me, these are the more interesting suggestions: (1) replace the current system of having state legislatures draw political districts for themselves and the US House and (2) mandate voting.  I'll take a closer look at these ideas in some of my next posts.

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