Friday, December 17, 2010


The Reality Behind Soak the Rich Class Warfare

1. According to a study of Federal Reserve data conducted by NYU professor Edward Wolff, for the nation's richest 1%, inherited wealth accounted for only 9% of their net worth in 2001, down from 23% in 1989. (The 2001 number was the latest available.)

2. According to a study by Prince & Associates, less than 10% of today's multi-millionaires cited "inheritance" as their source of wealth.

3. A study by Spectrem Group found that among today's millionaires, inherited wealth accounted for just 2% of their total sources of wealth.

Neal Bortz


When Willie Sutton was interviewed, he reportedly replied to the question why he robbed banks with "because that's where the money is". The same reason liberals target the wealthy.
The only reason there is a "progressive" income tax, where the successful pay not only more actual dollars but at a higher rate as well, is because the politicians, mainly Democrats,can do it--as you point out, the money is there to take. That is a pitiful excuse for a reason, much like Sutton's reason for robbing banks. There is no moral reason for taking more than the fair share, the rent.
Willie denied that he said that or was even asked the question. He robbed banks because he loved doing it. "I was more alive when I was inside a bank, robbing it, than at any other time in my life."

The implication of the blog piece is that there is liberal agenda beyond redistribution in targeting the wealthy for higher rates of taxation - class warfare, perhaps, or some kind of retribution for an immoral capitalism that allows such wealth accumulation. Well there are liberals who think such things I'm sure, but this one will go with the majority in believing that since "the market" is amoral ('fairness' is not a concept of Economics), it is the government's responsibility to bring moral concepts like fairness, human well-being, and greater equality of opportunity to bear on society, bringing that society to a better place on the "moral landscape" (Harris). What tax rates are optimal to produce the greatest fairness may of course be hotly debated, but a single rate for all is not likely to be it, and a different rate for those who inherited their wealth woudl indeed be immoral, but I don't know of anyone advocating that! Unlike Willie, we tax in support of social goals not because we love tax collection.
What's more fair than a free exchange of goods and services in a society which protects property rights and has an impartial judiciary? Companies which don't provide a good product at a fair price fail. It is Government coercion which is at best amoral not the market. Thanks for the comments.
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