Sunday, August 19, 2007

Income Equality - The Why and How of it

Here's a nice piece at Capitalism Magazine on "income equality" and its true meaning in a free society.

The money quote:

Criticisms of income inequality are always couched in a certain type of language. For example, it is claimed that wealthier Americans "command" an "unfair share" of our "national wealth." Such language implies that American wealth is a communal pie that belongs equally to all of us.

But it is no such thing.

The vast wealth that exists in America has been created--through the productive activities and voluntary arrangements of individuals. And individuals do not necessarily create the same amount of wealth. Compare the value brought into existence by the entrepreneur whose productivity software is eagerly bought by millions--and the checkout clerk at a store that sells it. Such vast differences in productivity--which can be caused by vast differences in ability, work ethic, interests, skills, and choices--are the root of vast differences in income.

I'm sure there are those who would attack just this quote and not read the entire essay, and of course that's fine. But reading the entire essay might be of interest to some.

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