I just read an ARTICLE about America's taxation history and accumulated wealth. Paul Krugman is always interesting. But one of the things I was thinking of while he was discussing Teddy Roosevelt and how the accumulation of wealth threatened American democracy was that in nature,…mainly the strongest survive to procreate. they must overcome many forces and obstacles to survive to create offspring. This leads to a strengthening of the genes of a species. The species overall evolves into a stronger species and helps it compete in nature against other species. The same argument could be made for wealth and American capitalism. If you have a large number of people who inherit wealth and never have to earn it (they never have to create, they never have to take any risk, they never have to do anything to make themselves tougher) then you can create a group of wealthy people who are intellectually and innovatively weaklings.
There is a reason Bill Gates did not leave his fortune to his children, granted he left them $1 million; but if they want more they have to take that and creatively invest or expand it. Granted also that's a great start that most people do not have; but at least he's not leaving them billions like Sam Walton did his kids. Lean and hungry people are always more creative and innovative; wealthy, comfortable people are usually just slobs - especially if they never earned it.
I think this is an angle that the Democrats need to exploit when the GOTP talks about the death tax and taxation in general.
I've long thought that we should just get rid of inheritance, or at least limit it substantially, for just that reason, David. And I'd go one step further. A billionaire's child grows up with a universe of advantages. He goes to the best schools, travels the world, meets and hobnobs with the powerful. If that kid needs to inherit a wad of cash to do well, then he doesn't deserve to do well.
_________________________ MACTECHubi dolor ibi digitus
They aren't the drivers of our economy…usually… always exceptions…talking the kids of business CEOs and the investment class… I reiterate above what YoYo said…. they already have many many advantages… so they inherit billion too? I have NO problem with the "family farm" which is now almost extinct…. or say up to $3- 5 million… but billions like the Walton kids… outrageous.
Lastly the welfare recipients don't get much… not even enough to live on… most are already LEAN and hungry… and there is fraud… agreed, but not on the scale as the MI complex and their billions !! But we're talking what drives American Capitalism… and inheriting billions you did NOT make is worse than welfare. Welfare X million !!!
Good question….. even if you had $200 million to give to your family, after taxes they'd still get about $140 million of it… think they could survive on that ? With creative investors like Romney had, maybe they'd only lose $30 million (15%) !!
You missed my point. Yours is fine also, but what I was saying, might not want to use the "lean and creative" thing. As someone might question the concept of takiking the earned inheritance from wealthy parents when they die and give it to the welfare recipients instead of letting the children of the pRents inherit it. If being lean is an incentive to creativity, why give it freely to those who some say haven't earned it and whose parents haven't.
Also, earn a bit of wealth to pass on to kids is, itself, an incentive. Knowing that you won't be able to pass it on to ones kids, but having to turn it over to the government when one dies might not be an incentive to produce. Afterall, how manat of us work hard so we can proudly give it to the government?
If we don't count our blessings We are just wasting our time
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