09 Jun 2011

“Why Do Lefties Hate Tax Cuts on the Rich?”

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Kevin Drum complains that we conservatives view lefties like himself unfairly.

Reading Tim Pawlenty’s paean to double plus supply-side-ism yesterday made me wonder, once again, why conservatives think we liberals are opposed to it. I mean, if it actually worked, why would we be? It’s politically popular, and by their accounts it would generate trillions of dollars in extra revenue that we could use to finance our beloved lefty social programs. What’s not to like?

The only answer I can come up with is that conservatives are now completely invested in their theory that we liberals loathe rich people so much that we don’t care. We all want to screw the wealthy so badly that we’re willing to forego the elections we’d win and the mountains of revenue we’d gain if we lowered their taxes. We hate them that much.


This is an interesting example of mocking a proposition without actually denying it.

Barack Obama is an excellent representative of the same political philosophy held by Kevin Drum and he is renowned for explicitly advocating increased taxation for purposes of “fairness” even if higher rates resulted in lower growth and less revenue being collected. He said exactly that, and by so doing defined himself, in one of the most famous of his campaign debates.


So, are we conservatives being unfair? Would left-wingers like Kevin Drum and Barack Obama ever really support tax cuts for wealthier Americans if that was what it took to grow the economy and provide government with the funding the left desires to spend?

The answer is No. Left-wingers will never accept the reality that growth can only be achieved by lower taxes. The notion that allowing the rich to keep more grows the economy and benefits all is unacceptable. The left has ridiculed and dismissed this commonsensical proposition as “trickle-down economics.”

Leftism is fundamentally based on envy and societal division, and its route to power relies on agitating the passions of the masses, on mobilizing them on the basis of their animosity toward those better off than themselves. A theory of economics that proposes that failing to punish the rich will make everyone better off fundamentally contradicts leftism’s basic methods and ideology.

The psychology of the left is one of bitter resentment and hatred of anyone better off than oneself. The true leftist would rather everyone were worse off, as long as no one was permitted to be better off than anyone else.

This is the classic peasant mentality, which is the subject of a thousand bitter Eastern European jokes.

“An angel appears to a poor peasant, and informs him that God has taken pity on his sufferings and has sent a messenger to relieve his hardships. The peasant, he is told, may make one wish, and the angel will grant his desire. There is, however, a catch. The angel informs the peasant that, whatever he wishes for, his neighbor will receive also, and that neighbor will be given twice as much. The peasant reflects a moment, and tells the angel: ‘Pluck out one of my eyes.'”

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The economic ignorance of liberals is sometimes simply breathtaking.

First of all, there is absolutely no evidence that raising marginal tax rates would generate any more federal revenue for liberals to spend.

On top of that, lowering marginal rates actually causes the despicable Top 1% of earners to shoulder even larger portions of income taxes collected!

1980 19.05%
1985 21.81%
1990 25.13%
1995 30.26%
2000 37.42%
2005 39.38%

If you really wanted to punish The Rich, it seems like you would threaten them with even lower marginal rates, wouldn’t you?

The only conclusion an economist could draw from all this is that liberals must derive a higher utility from demagoguery than they do from the actual cash they say they want to spread around.

T. Shaw

Imagine there’s no liberal.

It’s part of a campaign to misdirect attention from Obama’s policies that are destroying the private sector.

Obama’s all-out assault on coal/oil; Dodd-Frank; Obama Hell Care; fifteen thousand job-killing regulations; etc. are causing a double-dip recession.

Unanticipation Department: Unexpectedly (now the second most useful/versatile word in the English language!), new jobless claims climb, again.

The USA is careening toward national bankruptcy. Tax increases and/or entitlement/transfer payment cuts will be insufficient to avoid economic collapse.
Sustained (measured in years and decades), 5%+ private sector economic growth is the best hope.

The USA has not achieved such rapid economic growth since the Nineteenth Century.

What do we need to do to achieve strong, sustained private sector growth?

Hint.1: Obama and think progress just aren’t into it.

Hint.2: What has changed since the 1800’s?


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