By Tom Rhodes, 10/20/2015
Hearing the Democrat Debate, and the cry from progressives all over the social media, one thing is clear. They firmly believe that the inequality in wealth distribution in the USA is a moral evil. For some reason the left takes the idea that because “all men are created equal” that if they don’t share an equal portion of society’s wealth that somehow society is not treating them equally hence a society that does not have equal distribution of wealth is an evil society.
The left’s solution is to make the wealthy more poor, except for themselves. Hillary make $200K per speech, if she chose she could give a poor family $100K every time she speaks and help lift that family out of poverty and still take home $100K per speech. She obviously doesn’t actually believe in redistribution of her wealth. The question is how does Hillary Clinton making $200,000 per speech hurt the poor? What is morally wrong about Hillary charging as much as others are voluntarily willing to pay for speaking hurt the poor.
Obviously there is no moral problem with Hillary making mega bucks. What poor family can’t find a job because society choose to pay Hillary $200K for a few hours work? How did her highly paid speech writer, who earns a very good living, hurt the poor by voluntarily accepting a part of Hillary’s evil wealth in exchange for her labor hurt the poor? What moral dictum did Hillary violate earning millions of dollars from her political experience?
If because all people being created in God’s image have equal worth, thus deserve an equal share of society’s wealth, they why doesn’t a murderer, or rapist, or child molester deserve an equal share of society’s wealth? If their actions and impact on society don’t determine what wealth society should give them, what does? If you believe that their actions (murder, rape, child molestation), should result in society’s punishment, and exclusion (to protect others in society who behave acceptably), then you don’t believe everybody should receive the wealth of society equally, rather people should be punished, banished, or rewarded based on their actions in society.
If the poor have their basic material needs of food and shelter met, the existence of a big gap between the poorest and richest is not a moral problem. Once basic needs are met, any difference in what wealth individuals have or don’t have is based on their individual contributions to society, and how others voluntarily exchange their labor and capital with others for their labor and capital.
There are economic factors that drive the largest wedge between the wealthy and poor. That factor is government getting in the middle and controlling who can and can’t freely exchange capital and labor. Compare income inequality from the 50’s to today. Compare government regulations from the 50’s to today. More government = more wealth inequality. Uber and Airbnb are prime examples of the problem with government. The government is trying to stop poor individuals from competing with big rich companies. You own a car or house and the government says that you can’t use your property to earn more wealth. The government is causing disproportionate wealth inequality. What business is it of the government if you let somebody use your spare bedroom for a night in exchange for $40. You and the person in your spare bedroom are voluntarily exchanging capital for use of private property, thus voluntarily transferring wealth. The government is saying that you must transfer that wealth to a big corporation that runs a hotel and cannot choose voluntarily to do so without government permission.
The inequality of wealth and income are only a moral failure of society if the poorest’ s basic needs aren’t met. Morally what most matters is if the rich got that way honestly. If the wealthy got rich morally and legally then the income gap is not a moral problem. Because the government is hindering individuals from using their labor and property to garner wealth and forcing others to use government approved cabs or hotels, rich cab companies, hotels, etc. are wealthy immorally.
Consider Uber, to drive a car you own you must have a license to drive, proving you can do so safely, and insurance to protect others in case you have an accident. So all uber drivers have proven to society that they can safely drive, and can cover the expenses if they do harm to others while driving. Why should there be any restrictions for that licensed and insured vehicle and person from offering their labor and property to another in exchange for their capital? One reason, to keep the poor, poor, and the rich, rich. The ruling elite want to control who has and doesn’t have wealth.
What is evil about a little old lady renting her spare bedroom out for a night, how does that hurt the poor? What is evil about a college kid driving other students around for a fee, how does that hurt the poor? What is evil about Hillary charging $200K to talk, how does that hurt the poor?
What the left refuses to do is recognize that the actions people take determine how others in society voluntarily reward them, or how society corporately punishes them. The biggest common factor in chronic poverty, persistent violent crime, and remaining impoverished is easily recognized. It is a common action (behavior) of those who are chronically impoverished in communities plagued with violent crime. It is not politically correct to speak it out loud.
There are noneconomic factors that make being poor permanent. These factors include not having a father in one's life, growing up with no family, no social emphasis on education, women having children without a man, and men having children without committing to the mother of those children. It is exceedingly rare for a married man and woman with kids to be persistently poor. A man and woman marrying may start out poor, but rarely do they as they have and raise children remain poor. Those noneconomic factors exist in greater quantity now for the same reason as the economic factors which create inequality of wealth. Too much government which rewards broken families, and punishes through wealth confiscation intact families.
The Evil of Wealth Disparity arises from the evil of Too Much Government. Freedom and Liberty in the past proved to be a fairer distributor of society’s wealth. However Freedom and Liberty have one basic problem that scare many. Liberty is not safe! With Liberty there is no guarantee that everything will turn out safe, that everybody will get a portion of what society offers based on their actions and contributions to society. As our society has become from feminized, the weaker, fairer sex, which values security over liberty, has continually traded liberty for security. As our Forefather Ben Franklin intoned, we now have neither liberty or security. The poor are not free to use their meager capital (a used car) to work their way from poverty, and as the tens of thousands of violent crime victims in Chicago can attest, they are no longer secure. All a result of Too Much Government. As polemist Thomas Paine so aptly put it, "Government, even in its best state, is but a necessary evil; in its worst state an intolerable one; for when we suffer or are exposed to the same miseries by a government, which we might expect in a country without government, our calamity is heightened by reflecting that we furnish the means by which we suffer."