We’ve an answer to this

Instead, we should talk not about the moral worth of individuals but about the moral worth of particular social arrangements. Is the society we want one in which it is acceptable for some people to have tens of millions or billions of dollars as long as they are hardworking, generous, not materialistic and down to earth? Or should there be some other moral rubric, that would strive for a society in which such high levels of inequality were morally unacceptable, regardless of how nice or moderate its beneficiaries are?

Rachel Sherman is an associate professor of sociology at the New School

Well, actually, we want a society in which the poor are rich. The relatively poor are absolutely rich that is.

That being delivered by capitalist free marketry and no other known system. At which point we’ve our answer, haven’t we?

34 thoughts on “We’ve an answer to this”

  1. The Unused Testicle

    Sadly for Rachel, judging from her name, the only people willing to deliver such a system would put her in a gas chamber.

  2. Yes… and to paraphrase the pirate sounding guy who brought yo sushi to UK… the successful entrepreneur looks at what the rich are spending their money on today and then brings it to the masses.

  3. “Well, actually, we want a society in which the poor are rich. The relatively poor are absolutely rich that is.”

    But that isn’t what they want at all.

  4. Yes [Tim]… and to paraphrase the pirate sounding guy who brought yo sushi to UK… the successful entrepreneur looks at what the rich are spending their money on today and then brings it to the masses.

  5. “At which point we’ve our answer, haven’t we? ”

    Not if “wee” are socialist scum “wee” don’t.

    Equal poverty for all–except middle class cultural Marxists. Get with the program Tim.

  6. @”That being delivered by capitalist free marketry and no other known system. At which point we’ve our answer, haven’t we? ”
    And lots of people have tried other systems – look at Venezuela – and ended with more inequality (what is more in equal than an obese president and a starving population).

  7. “Or should there be some other moral rubric, that would strive for a society in which such high levels of inequality were morally unacceptable, regardless of how nice or moderate its beneficiaries are?”

    We each of us are paid for what we contribute to society. Is it acceptable that some people contribute so little, that they get so little in return? Is it morally acceptable to take yet more from those who already contribute billions more than they get back, to give it to those who contribute nothing of value?

    Money has to be seen as a measure of our contribution to society. Accumulated money has to been seen as giving more to society than you get back. Is is right that some people should have given so much, and got so little back? Is it right that it should be given to someone else instead? Someone who contributes only the bare minimum?

    The people who advocate for this theory evidently expect to benefit by it. Presumably that means they secretly know they’re of the latter sort – people who contribute little of value to society themselves, but want more of the benefits of other people’s contributions nevertheless. Because they *neeeed* it.

  8. Mentioning JK Rowling short circuits the system of these sorts of fanatics.

    She’s an example of a virtuous (in their eyes) billionaire…does not compute.

  9. ‘Or should there be some other moral rubric’

    I smell a false dichotomy.

    Also notice the emphasis on ‘society,’ at the stated expense of individuals. She is evil. Human rights are NOT subservient to society.

  10. I remember reading somewhere, a long time ago, the statement “the only skill worth having in socialist societies is the ability to disguise wants as needs”.

    Her ideal society would be dominated by lazy bastards exploiting the altruists by manufacturing ‘needs’.

  11. I’ve long said, NiV, that there should be a cap on what an individual pays in tax, irrespective of what they earn. Surely, if you tip in in £10 million or £20 million you’ve done more than your share, even if you earn £500 million?

    I’d suggest that everybody pays 20% or 25% up to a point, say £1 million, and that there is a regressive rate thereafter, working its way down to 0%.

    Imagine how many millionaires and billionaires would live in the UK if the tax system was that simple and reasonable. Would be bad news for tax accountants and their tax avoidance schemes.

  12. DocBud

    Would be bad news for tax accountants and their tax avoidance schemes

    The good thing is that the tax accountant in Ely would be in a state of perpetual purple rage. Hopefully it would cause his head to explode.

  13. Most talk about rights is barren stuff. Most talk about “we” wanting this or that is totalitarian rubbish.

    “Human rights are NOT subservient to society.” There are no Human Rights or Natural Rights. Humans are social animals so their rights are a part of the society of which they are members. Different societies act differently. Which is doubtless as it should be; we are all for diversity, are we not?

  14. It never seems to occur to people that if Bill Gates can’t be a multi multi billionaire because Microsoft is so successful, then all the people who work for him and are very well paid also lose out, the state loses a huge amount of tax revenue, and the customer loses the benefit of Microsofts products (some might argue thats not a great benefit, but you get the idea….). They seem to imagine that you can take Bill out of the equation, but all the rest somehow still comes into existence.

    Which of course it doesn’t.

  15. allthegoodnamesaretaken

    Is there any another Professor spouting bollocks well outside of their actual field?

    For the life of me I can’t recall his name…

  16. Instead, we should talk not about the moral worth of individuals but about the moral worth of particular social arrangements. Is the society we want one in which it is acceptable for some people to have tens of millions or billions of dollars as long as they are hardworking, generous, not materialistic and down to earth? Or should there be some other moral rubric, that would strive for a society in which such high levels of inequality were morally unacceptable, regardless of how nice or moderate its beneficiaries are?

    Shorter version: Let’s figure out a way to convince the proles that theft in the name of “social justice” isn’t really theft.

    Another day, another fascist.

  17. It never seems to occur to people that if Bill Gates can’t be a multi multi billionaire because Microsoft is so successful, then all the people who work for him and are very well paid also lose out, the state loses a huge amount of tax revenue, and the customer loses the benefit of Microsoft’s products.

    It may occur to them, and it may not. It doesn’t really matter one way or the other to those with Sherman’s worldview. This is about envy; nothing more, nothing less.

  18. “They seem to imagine that you can take Bill out of the equation, but all the rest somehow still comes into existence.”

    It’s the decadence of the Left. Rooted in their inability to understand how the world works.

  19. “It’s the decadence of the Left. Rooted in their inability to understand how the world works.”

    As I keep saying, the Left are psychologically still children. Children don’t understand how food gets on their plate, and roof over their heads either. It all just appears before them, provided by a beneficial overlord. The Left have never moved on from this paradigm, so consider that the State, aka Mummy and Daddy, should provide everything for them gratis.

  20. Whilst this is tellingly true:

    “When I used the word “affluent” in an email to a stay-at-home mom with a $2.5 million household income, a house in the Hamptons and a child in private school, she almost canceled the interview, she told me later. Real affluence, she said, belonged to her friends who traveled on a private plane.”

    She hasn’t sussed that that’s what always kills her particular utopia. Humans just do not, by nature, look down and happily donate their wealth. It always has to be forcibly wrested from everyone and actual real people don’t like that very much.

  21. Pedant
    “She hasn’t sussed that that’s what always kills her particular utopia. Humans just do not, by nature, look down and happily donate their wealth. It always has to be forcibly wrested from everyone and actual real people don’t like that very much.”

    Actually, an eminent Professor has written a book called the Joy of Tax, which would seem to be in opposition to your view.

  22. “DocBud

    Would be bad news for tax accountants and their tax avoidance schemes”

    We’ve moved on.

    No respectable tax planner advocates ‘schemes’ any more.

    We put ‘structures’ in place.

  23. Usual shit.

    “Look, we love the people coming into this country, legally or not, who take your jobs. We know you’re angry. Tough shit.

    But look, look over there. That bastard is worth a fortune, be angry at him.”

    And, hilariously, they also love the rich bloke and would kill to get invited to one of his parties.

  24. Yes but fairness also implies that one set of people should not have access to significant tax reduction mechanisms that others don’t. Because then those with such access pay a lot less, often a hell of a lot less tax, than others who earn less.

    The fewer loopholes and concessions, the better, and make sure any income routed through capital gains is caught.

  25. “Fairness is taxes applied in equal amounts or equal rates.”

    Fairness is when your taxes equal the amount needed to pay for the net benefits that you as an individual get from government spending. Fairness is getting what you paid for.

    But the entire *point* of the welfare state is to be unfair. The virtue they’re really talking about is mercy, not justice.

  26. “Fairness is when your taxes equal the amount needed to pay for the net benefits that you as an individual get from government spending.”

    Bullshit.

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