For whom the bell tolls 0

Taxing ‘the rich’ means impoverishing everyone, as Thomas Sowell explains with characteristic clarity:

The idea that you can single out one segment of society to be taxed or mandated, for the benefit of the rest of society, is reminiscent of a San Francisco automobile dealer’s sign: "We cheat the other guy and pass the savings on to you." The economy is not a zero-sum game where someone gains what others lose. The whole economy can lose when ill-considered policies gain political popularity and stifle economic growth. People who do not own a single share of corporate stock can still lose big time when capital gains taxes are raised– not only because jobs can follow capital out of the country, but also because millions of working people’s pension plans own corporate stock, and those people’s retirement incomes will depend on the value of those stocks, which is reduced by capital gains taxes. One of the biggest taxes is one that is not even called a tax – inflation. When the government spends money that it creates, it is transferring part of the value of your money to themselves. It is quiet taxation but often heavy taxation, falling on everyone, no matter how low their incomes might be. By the end of the 20th century, a $100 bill would not buy as much as a $20 bill would buy in the middle of that century. For people who saved cash, inflation amounted to an 80 percent tax. For others, it was an 80 percent tax minus whatever cumulative interest or dividends they received on the money they invested. Given the staggering cost of the government’s financial bailouts, there is no way that Barack Obama’s grandiose spending plans can be carried out without inflation.

When politicians start talking about taxing "the rich," remember the old saying [from the poem by John Donne]: "Send not to know for whom the bell tolls. It tolls for thee." 

Posted under Commentary by Jillian Becker on Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Tagged with , , ,

This post has 0 comments.

Permalink