[extropy-chat] Tax Burden Gap

J. Andrew Rogers andrew at ceruleansystems.com
Thu Aug 19 05:12:18 UTC 2004

On Aug 17, 2004, at 4:04 PM, Matthew Gingell wrote:
>  I guess there might be a case that, in the long run, countries with
>  very lopsided income and wealth distributions eventually do better
>  for everyone than countries with a big middle class. I can't think of
>  an obvious historical argument though.

Class mobility, a function of wealth rather than income, matters at 
least as much as the distribution, as this is what provides much of the 
motivation to dare great things.  Very wealthy people contribute a lot 
to society by being able to risk very large sums of capital on things 
that interest them, including many things that the government will 
neither have the will nor the interest to fund regardless of merit.  
This money builds the companies and pays for the research that 
generates the majority of the technology we enjoy today.  The engine of 
innovation is powered by private capital, and one thing history has 
shown is that in hindsight most government funded "innovations" were 
either unnecessary, expensive, or economically irrelevant.

If you have nothing but a middle class, who provides the capital 
required to have a strong economy?

The irony is that progressive income taxes destroy class mobility.

j. andrew rogers

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