We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
At Powerline re economic inequality, "... the 400 richest Americans control more wealth than the poorest 80 million households, and “the richest citizens continue to capture the lion’s share of new wealth."
It is an absurd discussion, because the only way wealth can be "captured" is by theft, fraud, or taxation. The zero-sum fallacy is there, as usual. Still, the best solution to extreme statistical inequality suggested there would be to confiscate the assets of the top 400, or 1000, or 10,000, or 100,000, and to ship those people to New Zealand or Tasmania just in case they might be tempted to try to get rich again in the US.
When rid of the richest, you can begin to go after the kulaks. After a while, there is nobody left to tax and economic equality ensues (except for our Leaders, of course - some pigs are more equal than others). It's great. No, it's awesome.
What America needs is more millionaires not less. It needs more billionaires too. The wealthy invest their money and then their money goes to work.
What I am in favor of is eliminating the charitable deduction that millionaires and billionaires use to avoid all/most taxes. Let them pay at their legal tax rate. After that I don't care what they do with their money.
It's a funny thing. The 0.01% aren't the same ones they were five years ago, or ten, or fifty. We remember the very few names that endure. We forget those that went bust.
But we remain just as angry at them in the abstract. I suspect it is left over from times when we lived in smaller groups, when someone who had a lot more than the rest probably did steal it. We are wired for that mistrust.
Assistant Village Idiot
Exactly. It's not the same 400 people since 1982. In fact, I would be surprised if more than a few have been in the top 400 since then. Even Warren Buffet wasn't in that number until 1990 at the earliest. Bill Gates and Paul Allen? Their fortunes were made in the late 80s and throughout the 90s and probably not until Windows 95 was released.
Those millionaires mostly want you to be paid third world wages and live in third world conditions. They’ve purchased a government that sees it the same way.
Millionaires are a generally noxious by unavoidable byproduct of a system free and fair enough to provides a decent life for the majority. Once they’ve got their millions, they have zero interest in freedom or fairness. No system is perfect.
“Dangerous servant, terrible master” kind of thing.
“Fire is immensely useful, therefore our principals require burning our house! Lobster is delicious, so our principles say we have to eat the shells!” — libercuckservatarians
Capital is extra money. Capital, aka rich people, who are the ones with extra money, buy heavy equipment for ditch diggers and make them hugely more productive, and better paid. At the same time the right people get richer from it.
It's extra money because the rich don't spend much more on themselves once they've gotten enough stuff. All the additional income goes back into capital.
Capital is seed corn. You don't distribute the seed corn or you'll starve next year. Some corn is held back even if people are hungry.
The rich are the onces who can be trusted with seed corn.
You don't have to like billionaires; feel free to be appalled by them.
But hear this: a grab at their filthy lucre for the good of society is a "one time shot" after which the billionaires and all that lovely money are gone. And the "poorest 80 million households" are still the "poorest 80 million households" but even more so now because the cash cow that provided so much state revenue for their benefits is no more.
It's almost as if this has to be relearned all over again, generation after generation.