By Larry Leonard
July 9, 2014 — I was 20. It was 1962. The civil rights movement was heating up. It seemed a good time in America, but what I did not know about was the pent-up hatred by the unsuccessful in America. They wanted to be more than just equal. They wanted revenge.
I see it now, but it was not visible then. They wanted to get even for the years of second class citizenship, which is what is happening now. This is accomplished by years of redistribution of resources. It is understandable, of course, unless you are the elephant in the linked piece, above. He doesn’t need to get even. His spirit is broken. He is just grateful to have the spiked chains removed from his legs.
Getting even, it turns out in the minority case, can be problematic. In the process, you can remove the important parts of what makes an economy sing. What is left behind is an empty capitalist shell with a few folks hoarding what they have and burying it in clay jars in the back yard against the potential arrival of Viking raiders on their shores. The corporate offshore storing of large revenue clusters these days is like that. Growth of government and government spending is like the Vikings. The money will remain hidden until it looks safe to bring it home for re-investment.
The thing is, reinvestment to make bigger profits via production (jobs) is what capitalists do. And while government jobs cost taxpayer bucks, jobs in the private sector don’t cost taxpayers a penny. They are free jobs. They actually create new taxpayers, in fact.
A basic economic lesson
Hammering the “rich” feels good to the once-outsiders, but the punitive value of taxes and redistribution methodology keeps the music out of the economy, which means “jobs.” No capitalistic music (profit for investment), no private sector jobs growth. The poor are just a little less poor and can feel good about hammering the evil rich in America.
The Christian religion has passages about this sort of thing. They have to do with forgiving those who have wronged you, for there is no profit in getting even. Once more, seemingly empty and odd phrases from the Bible turn out to have depth for those who practice them.
If those who were left out don’t let the Golden Goose return, there will be no golden eggs left in the land. Another way to describe the outcome is that socialism leaves everybody except the top socialists equally broke.
Forgiving the millionaires is the only way you have a chance of becoming one, yourself, it seems.