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Discussion: (3 comments)

  1. Redistributive justice relies on a false assumption, namely, that individual incomes are static over time. Since individual incomes increase over time as their earners gain value in the labor market, and since rewarding hard work incentivizes it while conducing economic growth producing shared prosperity for all, what justification is there for wealth transfers that incentivize sloth and slow economic growth producing diminished prosperity for all? There is only one: Individual incomes must be equalized after taxes and transfer payments at all points in time in service of the sentiment of redistributive justice, regardless of whether it is actually achieved or undermined thusly.

    Democrats zealously believe that the federal government must equalize individual incomes after taxes and transfer payments at all points in time, and they will yield to neither economic fact nor reason in pursuit of their bankrupt faith. We cannot reason with Democrats, which is why we must crush them politically. There is no other option.

    1. Maria Zayas

      One can only wonder at “Lavaux’s” bias evidencing a belief (if not irrational fear) that the growing cry for economic and social justice seeks to transfer wealth in so disparate a manner so as to incentivize “sloth” and thereby slow economic growth to the detriment of all. The
      vast majority of “occupiers” are not anti-capitalist. They, like most of us, still believe that better “mousetraps” add value to our lives – that producers and innovators (one of whom,
      “Steven Jobs”, Rep. Ryan cites as an example) should be commensurately rewarded. Occupy Wall Street is about the rampant and criminally corrosive cronyism which has subverted the very essence of innovation which was once commplace in this country and supplanting this economic dynamism with innane esoteric monitization markets for their own sake, or rather, for the sake of self-serving profiteering producing virtually nothing. Lavaux’s misplaced lament, or perhaps admonition, that Democrats cannot be reasoned with and must instead be crushed politically obviates the only option that “we”, the people, have left. For you see, “we”, is me, and as a former Republican, now independant, I am incredulous as to how my former party became so co-opted, and corrupted, and mired by anachronistic dogma so antithetical to basic human decency. However lacking the “occupiers” central message, implicit throughout is that it’s time to drain the swamp, to perhaps even select true political representatives in 2012 with the courage to legislate campaign finance reform (inter alia) and to grapple with our economic mess humanely and equitably.

  2. Ken Pidcock

    Conventional wisdom on government’s role in inequality often has it backwards: tax reforms have resulted in a more progressivefederal income tax; government transfer payments have become less progressive (due in large part to growing entitlement payments to wealthier seniors).

    Do I have this right? We have a more progressive income tax because a greater proportion of poor people aren’t paying income tax, and government transfer payments have become less progressive because there are more elderly Americans, and that happens to include a good number of high earners.

    That’s the logic here? Personally, I don’t think government has played much of a role in income inequality. Nevertheless, I would have been ashamed to have written that bullet.

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