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October 09, 2014

The Math is Settled

According to our progressive Brethren in the Eurosphere, the best way to reduce income inequality is to make everyone share the cost of the social safety net:

There seems to be an obvious solution to rising inequality: higher taxes. But there's an inconvenient fact here. The way most advanced, industrial countries have made real gains on inequality is through relatively regressive taxes that fund programs that reduce inequality. In fact, America's tax system is already unusually progressive by international standards. Our ongoing research suggests that this unusual relationship is not a coincidence.

The countries in northern Europe that have made the biggest strides in reducing economic inequality do not fund their governments through soak-the-rich, steeply progressive taxes. Instead, they have broad-based taxes that ask all workers to contribute to a generous welfare state.

Brace yourselves for the mother of all unintended admissions:

There's a reason governments in nations with highly progressive taxes end up spending less to combat inequality — those taxes raise relatively little revenue for both economic and political reasons. For instance, the highly progressive taxes in the United States have fostered intense backlash from powerful economic elites, pushing high-earning individuals and firms to find loopholes and lobby for top-end cuts.

Isn't that precisely what Those Horrid Rethugs have been arguing all along? The gang that can't shoot straight can't even do redistribution efficiently.

Math seems to be a recurring theme this week, doesn't it? How distressing.

Posted by Cassandra at October 9, 2014 08:35 AM

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Comments

Yet more proof that math is racist. Or classist. Or something...

And these are the people who say without irony that "reality has a liberal bias".

Posted by: MikeD at October 9, 2014 10:48 AM

Dang it! I demand that someone figure out a way to erase poverty using money taken entirely from other people! Let me know when it's accomplished. I'm a little short this week.

Posted by: Texan99 at October 9, 2014 11:33 AM