Saturday, April 26, 2014

Redistribution of Income and Wealth

An open message to those who favor the redistribution of income and wealth:

Why are you wasting your time on political action? If you favor redistribution, you hold the power in your own hands. Write a check, open your wallet; sell your possessions and give the proceeds to someone who deserves your wealth more than you do.

Of course, chances are excellent that this is not the sort of redistribution you favor -- if it were, you would already be engaging in it, as many less "progressive" people are. No, chances are that you favor not coughing up your own wealth, but having thugs -- aka the state -- steal and extort on your behalf and give some of the loot to people you would like to get it. And, mirabile dictu, you would like to have everyone think well of you for your criminal "compassion." It's very sad that so many people's morality has sunk to such an abysmal low.-Robert Higgs

It is tempting to think about government transfers in a simple way: one person, taxpayer T, loses a certain amount of money; another person, recipient R, gains the same amount; and everything else remains the same. When people look at income redistribution in this way, they tend to make a judgment about the desirability of the transfer simply by considering whether T or R is the more deserving. Commonly, especially when the issue is discussed in the news media or by left-liberal politicians, R is portrayed as a representative of the poor and downtrodden and T as a wealthy person or a big corporation. Opponents of the transfers then appear callous and lacking in compassion for the less fortunate.

In fact, the overwhelming portion—more than 85 percent—of all government transfer payments is not “means-tested,” that is, not reserved for low-income recipients.-Nineteen Neglected Consequences of Income Redistribution

No comments:

Post a Comment

If the post you are commenting on is more than 30 days old, your comment will have to await approval before being published. Rest assured, however, that as long as it is not spam, it will be published in due time.

Related Posts with Thumbnails