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.
Free enterprise is culturally mainstream, for the moment. Asked in a Rasmussen poll conducted this month to choose the better system between capitalism and socialism, 13% of respondents over 40 chose socialism. For those under 30, this percentage rose to 33%. (Republicans were 11 times more likely to prefer capitalism than socialism; Democrats were almost evenly split between the two systems.)
The government has been abetting this trend for years by exempting an increasing number of Americans from federal taxation. My colleague Adam Lerrick showed in these pages last year that the percentage of American adults who have no federal income-tax liability will rise to 49% from 40% under Mr. Obama's tax plan. Another 11% will pay less than 5% of their income in federal income taxes and less than $1,000 in total.
To put a modern twist on the old axiom, a man who is not a socialist at 20 has no heart; a man who is still a socialist at 40 either has no head, or pays no taxes. Social Democrats are working to create a society where the majority are net recipients of the "sharing economy." They are fighting a culture war of attrition with economic tools. Defenders of capitalism risk getting caught flat-footed with increasingly antiquated arguments that free enterprise is a Main Street pocketbook issue. Progressives are working relentlessly to see that it is not.
Please read the whole thing, because he gets to the heart of the issue.
Every society that has reduced its productive class has fallen into poverty or failed to rise from it. Russia was on its way toward a free-market democracy when the Bolsheviks destroyed the imperial family and the free market. Russia promptly farther into poverty than it had been. Zimbabwe confiscated nearly all the productive free-market farms and is now starving. Mao choked off the possibility of free markets on mainland China and its people suffered in material want for decades -- still do. Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il, and their followers, have kept North Korea poor and miserable while South Korea found its way to freedom and prosperity. The UK and other European Union nations have been less complete in their socialism and have kept a better level of material well-being, but I believe their middle class is living well below where they might if they had freer economies.
Why does anyone want this to happen here?
David Thompson's article referenced earlier at Maggie's, mentioned the "bafflingly wrong-headed" socialistic belief suffered by these people. The price required for unattainable social justice is beyond imagination.
If the BHO Administration is not slowed... and soon... in their sprint to Statism, then our country will inevitably turn more socialist than present day Europe. Already and at ever increasing rates we see young people preferring government largess to the rigors of competing in the market. The creeping socialism of the last 60+ years will be better labeled "swelling socialism" as the State takes over more and more power from we the people.
We are already dangerously close to the tipping point where more government borrowing and spending will doom us to a future Soviet style collapse.
IIRC, this is reason that the Founders only extended the franchise to those who paid taxes. This included heads of household who owned a certain # of acres, OR the equivalent in a business (carpenter w tools worth $ XX.XX). They were the only ones who could elect representatives who had the coersive power of the government to raise and collect taxes.
Once the "right" to vote was extended to anyone with a pulse, our representatives should have ensured that EVERYONE WHO VOTED PAID SOME PERCENTAGE OF TAXES, so they would "have some skin in the game."
I say this fully aware that for years my family had no tax liabillity; being in the military (enlisted) with 2 kids, we didn't have the income. BUT, I KNEW that was true.
I know so many leftists who live well off of the work that capitalists do. It is just sickening. They work for the city or a non-profit or the schools or the university, etc. When we pay taxes or make donations, we are supporting leftists. The least we can do is be very careful where we donate.
May I suggest that you write a short, compelling piece on this subject and distribute it to your local papers and the WSJ, send it your friends with a request that it be forwarded to everyone they know and everyone their friends know, and ask MF, LGF, Theo and others to post it.
Common sense from common (i.e. regular) people is needed to change the course of history. We have to do it. We cannot wait for others to do it for us. Time is short and the water is rising.