Monday, November 28, 2011

Income Inequality, Job Creation, and OWS

One of the memes being pushed by the socialist left and their current lackeys in the Occupy Wall Street/Philadelphia/Oakland/etc. movement is income inequality, or more specifically, that income inequality in and of itself is bad. This is simply wrong.

Like it or not, certain professions are worth more in a monetary sense to society than others. For example, engineering generally pays more than social work, because society places more value on the engineer's product than that of the social worker. Likewise, someone working in finance may earn more than an engineer. And generally, those who create jobs for others are also compensated more than someone who does not create any jobs.

If someone earns more than me, that's no skin off my back. Good for him. If he makes $1,000,000 per year while I make $100,000, dragging his income down because "$ARBITRARY AMOUNT is enough" does not improve my lot. Even it it did, that would not make it right. Just because somebody has something I want doesn't make it right to appropriate it for my ends. The best word to describe such conduct is theft.

One thing the collectivists have either forgotten, or more likely never learned, is that a rising tide lifts all boats. Despite a vast gulf in wealth between the richest and poorest in this country, even the poor are much better off than they were even a couple decades ago. "Poor" people in the US generally have running water, TV (often with a cable or satellite hookup), plenty of clothes, and cars. Hell, a lot of them are fat because they sit on their asses and eat junk food.

Only if someone makes his money dishonestly or at the expense of others, e.g., Bernie Madoff, should we be concerned with how he made it, how much he made, and whether he needs to return it. Unless that's the case, we should encourage entrepreneurship, which results in more jobs, which in turn results for more prosperity for more people.

Now, one thing which does need to be stopped is crony capitalism, in which politicians rewards their donors with lucrative contracts, tax laws, or loans made to credit-unworthy borrowers. E.g., General Electric not paying any income tax, or the ill-advised loans to Solyndra. However, crony capitalism isn't the result of income inequality, it's the result of corrupt politicians implementing big city machine politics on a national scale.

Another thing which the OWS-types fail to understand when they complain that "rich S.O.B.s" haven't started any companies to give people jobs is that starting such a company nowadays subjects you to a regulatory nightmare, pretty much regardless of what industry you're in. When starting a company not only do you need to come up with working capital you also need to retain the services of accountants and lawyers so that you can ensure that you abide by a mountain of laws because the Federal government is involved in all aspects of your business. And this is of course on top of the regulatory B.S. you need to deal with on a state and local level. More than a few entrepreneurs with good ideas have basically said, "fuck it, why bother?"

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Well stated and how very true. Envy and malice will not get anyone much of anything. Except more of the same, because they tend to gravitate to one another.

They are espousing a hateful doctrine and they are whining wretches. They must be hindered by a coherent refutation of their motives.

Your posting is one of those things. And as for me, they are better off not meeting me. I am a rhetorical monster, I can deal out a storm.

And at times, I don't care who it hurts or offends. There is a time and place to make a stand in life. I won't see America destroyed by such travesties.