Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Equalizing Incomes

"One of the worst features of all the plans for sharing the wealth and equalizing or guaranteeing incomes is that they, the ruling class, lose sight of the conditions and institutions that are necessary to create wealth and income in the first place."

Henry Hazlitt (1894-1993)

Prescient? Yes, because it is correct principle. Written in 1946, Dr. Hazlitt was well ahead of our current economic world. The redistribution of wealth, if even possible, is NOT a value that made the United States a great nation. Creating an entitlement society (and mentality) is NOT a value that made the United States a great nation. Federal control and income confiscation is NOT a value that made the United States a great nation. Central planning of economic markets is NOT a value that made the United States a great nation. I could go on and on. If you find any of that in any of the writings of the Founding Fathers, I will eat the pages in front of you.

Can talents be equalized? How about skills and abilities? How can desires and dreams which create drive and determination be equalized? Or the desire to learn and be educated and think for oneself? Well of course none of that can be. And therefore there will always be those who excel, and NOT at the expense of those who choose, yes choose, to lack behind. They would excel because of who they are.

If the gubment mandated tomorrow that all the wealth* in the U.S. be redistributed equally among its citizenry, each would choose a different path with what to do with that gift. Some would squander it on nonsense. Some would spend it to benefit others. Some would try to acquire "stuff" and immediate comfort. And some would invest it in ways that created more income and a secure future. A zillion paths for that redistributed wealth would be followed. And in short order, perhaps shorter than most would think, the same wealth disparities would exist as the cream rose to the top and the dregs sank back to the bottom. Anyone who thinks wealth can be redistributed as an economic policy is a dope.

* Those whose wealth was inherited (or acquired through marriage) would have NO idea how to go about creating the wealth that was given to them. Name your favorite trust-fund family. And their entitlement mentality would not get them very far... They would be the loudest squawkers about the "inequalities and unfairness" of the system!

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