April 22, 2014
Daniel Shuchman on the left’s latest Great White Hope, Thomas Piketty:
Mr Piketty urges an 80% tax rate on incomes starting at “$500,000 or $1 million.” This is not to raise money for education or to increase unemployment benefits. Quite the contrary, he does not expect such a tax to bring in much revenue, because its purpose is simply “to put an end to such incomes.” It will also be necessary to impose a 50%-60% tax rate on incomes as low as $200,000 to develop “the meagre US social state.” There must be an annual wealth tax as high as 10% on the largest fortunes and a one-time assessment as high as 20% on much lower levels of existing wealth. He breezily assures us that none of this would reduce economic growth, productivity, entrepreneurship or innovation.
Mr Piketty also writes things like this. Let that one sink in for a moment. And Instapundit reminds us that the threshold for “earning too much” is very often, rather conveniently, “just above what a two-earner journalist or academic couple can plausibly make.”
Caleb Bonham on the things you can be taught in a creative writing class:
A professor at Eastern Connecticut State University was caught on audio telling his class that Republicans will close colleges if they prevail in 2014 and that “racist, misogynist, money-grubbing people” want to suppress the liberal vote. In a four-minute recording of a classroom lecture Professor Brent Terry is heard strongly suggesting that conservatives are greedy racists who want to suppress the vote of anyone who might vote liberal.
Readers may wish to revisit this bewildering screed from the first day of another creative writing class.
And Theodore Dalrymple on productivity and its enemies:
There is, as every petty official knows, a great deal of pleasure to be had from the obstruction of others, especially if they appear to be more fortunate, better placed, richer, or more intelligent than oneself. There is a pleasure in naysaying, all the greater if the naysayer is able to disguise from the victim the fact that he is not only doing his duty but gratifying himself. Indeed, there are many jobs, meaningless in themselves, in which the power to say no is the only non-monetary reward. More to be feared even than the secret sadist, however, is the person who genuinely believes in the intrinsic value and even indispensability of his absurd task. He is as dangerous as any true believer.
As usual, feel free to share your own links and snippets in the comments.