Tuesday, December 7, 2010

More on liberal tax anger

In the comments below, Andrew clarifies and expands my take on liberal anger about taxes:

This liberal's anger is, in part, also about the deeply unjust society that emerges when deep and abiding inequalities are enshrined by massive asymmetries in wealth. Yeah, I'm saying it: We should spread the wealth around.

Fair point. In my mind, a lot of the government programs I was mentioning -- the ones that seem more likely to take the hit when our years of national debt spending come to an end if, as I suspect, never summon the will to pay for the services we're getting -- do the job of addressing the pernicious effects of growing inequality in America. For me, at least, it's not about taking from the rich so much as it is about lifting up the poor. (Your mileage may vary on that point.) But you probably can't have one without the other. The rich can afford it. And the rich wouldn't be rich, most likely, without the infrastructure, stability and security provided by the government. They've benefitted disproportionately from that; I'm fine if they pay a few extra tax dollars in return.

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