Neil H. Buchanan
PROFESSOR OF LAW
JAMES J. FREELAND EMINENT SCHOLAR CHAIR IN TAXATION
Director of Global Scholarly Initiatives
M.A., Ph.D., Harvard University, Economics
Ph.D, Monash University, Laws
J.D., University of Michigan
B.A., Vassar College, Economics
Teaching and Scholarship
Interaction of Economic Issues and Constitutional Law
Federal Deficits and Debt
- Designed to teach the fundamentals of federal income taxation in order to prepare students, as lawyers, to recognize and appreciate income tax consequences of transactions and events they encounter in general practice of law.
- Tax policy is the study of different types of taxes, the reasons for taxes, and the reasoning underlying them. It is interdisciplinary, incorporating principles from economics, philosophy, politics, psychology, and public policy. You will not be expected to be an expert in, or to become one, in all of these topics, but familiarity with one or more of them will be helpful for the course.
- This course will provide an overview of the taxation of deferred compensation, both in the qualified and nonqualified context. Students should develop a sound grasp of the basic principles of deferral and of the technical requirements for qualified and nonqualified plans.
Legal and Economic Commentary
- Justia’s Verdict. Regular Contributor, July 2011 – present, https://verdict.justia.com/author/buchanan.
- Dorf on Law, Regular Contributor, November 2006-Present, http://www.dorfonlaw.org.
- The Debt Ceiling Disasters: How the Republicans Created an Unnecessary Constitutional Crisis and How the Democrats Can Fight Back (2013).
Articles and Chapters in Books
- Social Security Is Fair to All Generations: Demystifying the Trust Fund, Solvency, and the Promise to Younger Americans, 27 Cornell J. L. & Pub. Pol’y 237 (2017).
- Situational Ethics and Veganism, Boston U. L. Rev. Annex (Mar. 26, 2017), www.bu.edu/bulawreview/buchanan/.
- (With Michael C. Dorf.) Don’t End or Audit the Fed: Central Bank Independence in an Age of Austerity, 102 Cornell L. Rev. 1 (2016).
- An Odd Remedy that Does Not Solve the Supposed Problem: Commentary on Comptroller of the Treasury of Maryland v. Wynne et ux., Geo. Wash. L. Rev. On the Docket (May 23, 2015), http://www.gwlr.org/comptroller-of-the-treasury-of-maryland-v-wynne/.
- (With Dorf, Michael C.) Borrowing by Any Other Name: Why Presidential ‘Spending Cuts’ Would Still Exceed the Debt Ceiling, 114 Colum.L. Rev. Sidebar 44 (Mar. 11, 2014), http://columbialawreview.org/content/borrowing-by-any-other-name-why-presidential-spending-cuts-would-still-exceed-the-debt-ceiling/.
- Owaru Kotono Nai Saimu Jogen No Kiki (The Never-Ending Debt Ceiling Crisis), Sozei Kenkyu (Tax Studies), April 2014.
- (With Dorf, Michael C.) Bargaining in the Shadow of the Debt Ceiling: When Negotiating Over Spending and Tax Laws, Congress and the President Should Consider the Debt Ceiling a Dead letter, 113 Colum. L. Rev. Sidebar 32 (Mar. 5, 2013), http://columbialawreview.org/content/bargaining-in-the-shadow-of-the-debt-ceiling-when-negotiating-over-spending-and-tax-laws-congress-and-the-president-should-consider-the-debt-ceiling-a-dead-letter/.
- The Role of Economics in Tax Scholarship, in Beyond Economic Efficiency in United States Tax Law 11 (David A. Brennen, Karen B. Brown and Darryll K. Jones eds., 2013).
- (With Dorf, Michael C.) How to Choose the Least Unconstitutional Option: Lessons for the President (and Others) from the Debt Ceiling Standoff, 112 Colum. L. Rev. 1175 (2012).
- (With Dorf, Michael C.) Nullifying the Debt Ceiling Threat Once and For All: Why the President Should Embrace the Least Unconstitutional Option, 112 Colum. L. Rev. Sidebar 237 (Dec. 21, 2012), https://scholarship.law.cornell.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=2017&context=facpub.
- Why We Should Never Pay Down the National Debt, 50 U. Louisville L. Rev. 683 (2012).
- Good Deficits: Protecting the Public Interest from Deficit Hysteria, 31 Va. Tax Rev. 75 (2011).
- What Kind of Environment Do We Owe Future Generations?, 15 Lewis & Clark L. Rev. 339 (2011).
- Medicare Meets Mephistopheles: Health Care, Government Spending, and Economic Prosperity,” 29 Miss. C. L. Rev. 319 (2010).
- Four Out of Four Panelists Agree: U.S. Fiscal Policy Does Not Cheat Future Generations, 77 Geo. Wash. L. Rev. 1402 (2009).
- ‘Generational Theft’? U.S. Fiscal Policy Does Not Cheat Future Generations, 52 Challenge: The Magazine of Economic Affairs 44 (Sept.-Oct. 2009).
- What Do We Owe Future Generations?, 77 Geo. Wash. L. Rev. 1237 (2009).
- How Realistic Is the Supply/Demand Equilibrium Story: A Simple Demonstration of False Trading and Its Implications for Market Equilibrium, 31 J. Socio-Econ. 400 (2008).
- Social Security and Government Deficits: When Should We Worry?, 92 Cornell L. Rev. 257 (2007).
- Is It Sometimes Good to Run Budget Deficits? If So, Should We Admit It Out Loud?, 26 Va. Tax Rev. 325 (2006).
- The Case Against Income Averaging, 25 Va. Tax Rev. 1151 (2006).
- The JEC’s Estate Tax Report: Myths and Legends, 111 Tax Notes 1133 (June 5, 2006).
- Playing with Fire: Feminist Legal Theorists and the Tools of Economics, in Feminism Confronts Homo Economicus: Gender, Law, and Society 61 (Martha Fineman & Terence Dougherty eds., 2005).
- Social Security, Generational Justice, and Long-Term Deficits, 58 Tax L. Rev. 275 (2005).
- The Uses of the Concept of Efficiency in Tax Analysis, in Proceedings National Tax Association, Tax Institute of America 441.
- A User’s Guide to Proposals to Replace the U.S. Tax System and Strangle Fiscal Policy.” 31 J. Econ. Issues 505 (1999).
- Taxes, Saving, and Macroeconomics, 31 J. Econ. Issues 59 (1999).
- Comparing Alternative Methods of Adjusting U.S. Federal Fiscal Deficits for Cyclical and Price Effects.
- Shooting from the Hip, or Taking Careful Aim: How Should People Make Decisions?, FindLaw’s Writ (October 2005) (reviewing Malcolm Bladwell, Blink (2005), and Steven Levitt & Stephen Dubner, Freakonomics (2004)), http://writ.news.findlaw.com/books/reviews/20051007_buchanan.html.
- Under the U.S. Tax System, Do the Rich Really Get Richer?, FindLaw’s Writ (June 11, 2004) (reviewing David Cay Johnston, Perfectly Legal: The Covert Campaign to Rig Our Tax System to Benefit the Super Rich–and Cheat Everybody Else (2005)), http://writ.news.findlaw.com/books/reviews/20040611_buchanan.html.
- Proof through Repetition and the ‘Liberal Bias’ of the U.S. Media, FindLaw’s Writ (June 20, 2003) (reviewing Eric Alterman, What Liberal Media(2002)), http://writ.news.findlaw.com/books/reviews/20030620_buchanan.html.
- Book review, 3 Theoretical Criminology 501 (November 1999) (reviewing David Cole, No Equal Justice: Race and Class in the American Criminal Justice System (1999)).
- Book review, 13 Contributions Pol’y Econ. 97 (1994) (reviewing Robert Eisner, The Misunderstood Economy: What Counts and How to Count It(1994)).
- Book review, 10 Contributions Pol’y Econ. 82 (1991) (reviewing Todd G. Buccholz, New Ideas from Dead Economists: An Introduction to Modern Economic Thought (1990)).
- Book review, 10 Contributions Pol’y Econ. 90(1991) (reviewing Kevin Phillips, The Politics of Rich and Poor (1990)).91).
- Jotwell Tax: The Journal of Things We Like (Lots). Contributing Editor, http://jotwell.com/.
- Should We Tax the Rich, or Leave Them Alone, Jotwell: Tax (June 6, 2011), http://tax.jotwell.com/should-we-tax-the-rich-or-leave-them-alone/.
- How the Tax Code’s Burdens on Individuals Demonstrate the Need for Comprehensive Tax Reform: Before the H. Comm. on Ways and Means, 112th Cong. (Apr. 13, 2011) (statement of Neil H. Buchanan, Assoc. Professor of Law, The George Washington University), http://waysandmeans.house.gov/UploadedFiles/Buchanan_Testimony_2011_04_13_Buchanan_FINAL.pdf.
- Health Care Costs and Fiscal Infirmity, Jotwell: Tax, (June 2, 2010), http://tax.jotwell.com/health-care-costs-and-fiscal-infirmity/.
- Findlaw’s Writ, Regular Columnist, August 2009-December 2010. Guest Columnist, 2000-2009.
Archive of columns available at: http://writ.news.findlaw.com/buchanan.
- Tax Wall Street’s Huge Bonuses, CNN Opinion, (December 28, 2009), http://www.cnn.com/2009/OPINION/12/28/buchanan.bonus.tax.
- Why Do Women Lawyers Earn Less than Men? Parenthood and Gender in a Survey of Law School Graduates, GWU Law School Public Law Research Paper No. 449 (Oct. 2, 2008), http://ssrn.com/abstract=1280464.
- TaxProf Blog, Guest Blogger, July 2005 and November 2008.
Available online at: http://www.taxprof.typepad.com.
- Left2Right, Columnist, 2005-06.
Available online at http://left2right.typepad.com/main/neil_buchanan/.
- A Taxing Matter, Guest Blogger, May 2006.
Available online at: http://ataxingmatter.blogs.com/tax/2006/05/index.html.
- “Amazing But True: Supply-Side Economics Lives On,” Dollars and Sense, pages 64-66 (April 1989). Re-printed in Annual Editions: Macroeconomics, The Dushkin Publishing Group, 1990.
- “Assault on the Law: Conservative Jurists Bring Their Economics to the Bench,” Dollars and Sense, pages 9-11 (May 1988).
- “Sad Reflections on Campaign ’88,” Dollars and Sense pages 5-8 (November 1988).