Earthchangers College

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AOC Thinks Concentrated Wealth Is Incompatible With Democracy. So Did Our Founders

http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2019/01/ocasio-cortez-aocs-billionai...

A complex issue.  It should be studied more.  I agree that 1% shouldn't hold 90% of the wealth; however, removing reward for one's efforts would take away incentive to achieve higher aims.  A personal 70% tax seems excessive.  The reasonable thing to do is raise taxes on those that can afford it, to a limit.  Find the balance point where even the poorest can have a decent life, stop funding wars and sending billions and billions in aid to other countries and there shouldn't have to be people homeless and hungry in America. 

While higher taxes is a concept to achieve that, another idea is to apply a higher tax on corporations, since being non-living-persons (though legal fiction does exist and maybe should be reevaluated), they are not "created equal." 

Corporations provide employment, so rather than working land, people work in businesses.  Is it fair the Walton family makes billions in profits while low-level Walmart employees have to also get welfare to survive?  From that standpoint, no, but... if Walmart didn't exist, there would be no jobs. There would be no lower prices that help the family budget. Many factors must be considered, so it needs to be scrutinized where the balance point is. 

Maybe the highest tax brackets should be on wealthy corporations, but limited in a more realistic way to providing living wages to their employees. More than just providing a living wage, corporate profits will be lowered, and this could be in conjunction with providing living wages, to where corporations have a cap on profits and create a more level playing field.  Corporations are at the root of a lot of problems because they have well-funded lobbyists and bribe politicians.  (Bribed politicians should be lampposted.) 

Okay, this is all just speculation.  There are hints there could be a better way, but it has to be looked at seriously, with an eye to minimum standards for the poor and capping the ability of corporations to sway politics.  As for the rich, they're somewhere in between.  Maybe higher taxes, maybe luxury taxes.  You don't want to put luxury car makers out of business because the rich can no longer afford to buy their cars.  See... there's a fine line to make it work for everybody.

I will say that democracy, where everybody is equal is a romantic notion.  "Created equal" means just that. We come into this world, each of us, with as much chance as the next person.  Thus, all humans should be respected, there are no human that is "less than" human.  All should have rights in this regard, and part of that should be minimum income to fund a decent lifestyle... plenty to eat, never worrying about heat being shut off in the winter, never going homeless, homes that meet minimum standards (no shacks, living in sheds, poor conditions, etc.)  To have better than minimum is the reward for innovation within free-market capitalism.  I guess, in a way, it might be looked at as "capped capitalism." 

Maybe CEO's shouldn't be getting multi-million dollar salaries and golden parachutes.  Maybe employees should be included in profit sharing or corporations should be employee owned?

Anyway, what are your thoughts?  Let's forge the future by envisioning what works for everyone.  We also need to get people to agree to lay down their swords over past indignities and start a new journey towards a better future. 

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