The rich folks in the USA think the progressive tax system is class warfare. Ken Lay sits in his mansion and complains about the fact that he has to pay progressive income tax. I oppose taxation of any kind, but I think that the poor person sitting in a jail cell charged with possession of marijuana has a more justified complaint. The drug laws are a very flimsy excuse for a state-sponsored kidnapping-and-ransom racket. Taxation is merely extortion, which is a much less serious crime. But it's not that important which group is more oppressed by a criminal government. It is important that both groups are oppressed, and if they could learn to work together effectively, they could end the oppression for everyone.
The progressive income tax is class warfare against the rich, but drug laws that are enforced only against the poor are also class warfare.
Class warfare is a two-way street, and the government benefits. Divide and rule is much more than an empty slogan.
The “national debt” is portrayed as a debt that everyone owes. It's actually a debt that the poor owe the rich. Who is that owns all those T-bills and who is it that pays the interest?
All in all, the deck is heavily stacked against the poor. That is the main reason they are poor. It's true that, as a group, the rich have more talent than the poor, but it is far from true that every rich person has contributed more than every poor person.
The poor pay rent for years and years, and never own their home. They are subject to intrusive inspection any time. The rich pay cash, and have all the rights of ownership. The poor work in the corporate cubicle, and have no idea what is transpiring in the CEO's office, while management monitors employee's phone calls and computer usage, and knows to the exact cent what they are getting paid. It's a patently unfair system. No wonder many people feel they are justified in breaking rules that are so obviously loaded against them. In light of the many corporate and government scandals, it does seem that many of those who make it to the top do so by breaking many of these rules.
We need a system where you get to the top by obeying the rules. We need a system that at least has a consistent moral basis. The basic theory of our social organization is inherently immoral, illogical, and hypocritical. If we could at least achieve consistent and logical theory of social organization, we would have a much greater chance for progress and prosperity.
But if I could push a button and make all the rich folks disappear, certainly wouldn't. I think the experiments in communism and fascism have proved that a society needs an elite. What needs to be improved is the method of selecting the social leaders.
If you just kill the rich and take their property, what you get is a bunch of newly rich criminals. Poverty and chaos are the usual result. As long as we have to have a criminal ruling class, we are better off with one that has some experience.
We need to change the rules, so that rich people who are also foolish and socially unproductive will gradually loose their wealth, and poor people who are socially productive can gradually take their place.
Some would say that is exactly what we have now, but I think most see it that it is a rigged system that has resulted in a hereditary aristocracy--Bush III, anyone?
I think it would be good to discourage renting for permanent dwellings. If a person pays for something, she should end up owning it. If she only pays for a while, then she should be a part owner.
Employers should be required to release financial details of the business to their employees.
If we have to have a tax at all, it should be a flat tax, preferably on consumption, but eliminating all taxation would make us all a lot richer, and also make us able to put up a lot better fight if we were to be invaded. We need to expand the right to keep and bear arms.
If we're going to eliminate welfare, it should be corporate welfare first. A society that refuses to give mothers the support they need to raise kids is a society headed for the dustbin of history.
Being rich is not easy. I went to high school with a rich kid. He was tall and handsome and smart. He had clothes, cars, and, of course, girls. He committed suicide at the age of 25.
Being poor is not easy either, but both being rich and being poor are made more difficult when the two classes fight. Coercive government with heavy taxation exacerbates the natural tensions between the classes. Both sides want to use the government to take money and power from the other side.
It's easier to get what you want by working rather than lying, stealing, or robbing. That's why it's not a good idea to join either the government or the mafia.
When our country was founded, there was an argument going on between those who believed that kings had a divine right to rule, and those who believed all men are created equal, (not including colored people and members of the female sex, of course). Communism was an attempt to make all people economically equal by government fiat. That was a disaster. All people are not equal, but when those who rule are functionally less equal than those they rule, trouble results. Unfortunately, outstanding qualities of leadership seldom breed true. A healthy society needs a mechanism for recognizing and rewarding accomplishment, no matter where it occurs, and our society is losing that.
A lot of dumb and lazy rich folks lording it over a lot of smart, hard-working poor folks is a social powder keg waiting for a spark. Suppressing and denying ability and accomplishment in the lower classes is not in the rational self interest of the ruling class. The poor may will not better their lot by ganging up on the rich to take their wealth, but they may not know that. Both classes need to fight less and work more.
Maybe we can't all play for the same stakes. Some people play for billions, and some for dollars, or dimes. But everyone could be playing by the same rules, and we'd have a lot less class warfare if that were true.