I know, the leftists here probably got excited by this title, but let me squash that excitement: As of now, the left is so far left even the
abandonment of free markets by the right is not a deal breaker because the left abandoned free markets thirty years ago. As Ronald Reagan joked:
"What's the difference between a republican and a democrat? It takes a republican a day longer to become a communist."
With that behind me, let me start on the meat of this topic.
Conservatives are shifting away from free markets and are turning into anti-capitalists. It has been a slow shift. Yes, we all know the establishment
republicans long ago abandoned free market capitalism (see too big to fail bank bailouts), but the rank and file and talking heads always paid homage
to them. Then came trump. He agreed with free markets BUT wanted fair trade between countries. This is a change in platform and, in my opinion a
welcome change due to the data we've been able to collect since the passage of NAFTA and other such FT deals.
Trump would use tariffs (a traditionally big no-no) to extract better deals and freer trade. This is an ends justify the means position. Being that
we're talking about taxes I'm only lukewarm to this idea, but not fully opposed. This uncomfortable tone could be seen in many of the right wing
talking heads. Rush limbaugh would toe the line but not forcefully, agreeing that if we got better trade deals out of it the tariff's would be well
worth it, but stopping short of endorsing the idea of tariffs.
Then I saw this
by tucker carlson. This is a full throated assault on free markets. Very anti-capitalist. Very anti-libertarian. He uses social
conservatism to attack fiscal conservatism. It's really an interesting piece but it's alarming to me. Here are a few of the paragraphs I have a real
In 2010, for example, Mitt Romney made about $22 million dollars in investment income. He paid an effective federal tax rate of 14 percent. For normal
upper-middle-class wage earners, the federal tax rate is nearly 40 percent. No wonder Mitt Romney supports the status quo. But for everyone else,
This is so intellectually dishonest I would expect this line of attack from barack obama. First, the federal tax rate for upper middle class wage
earners is not 40%. The top rate is only 32%, now at the time romney was relevant it was 39% BUT that's still dishonest! Why? Because on one hand
he's talking about romney's effective tax rate and on the other hand he's talking about the top rate. Those are completely different things.
ONLY DOLLARS EARNED OVER 400K IN A YEAR ARE TAXED AT THE TOP RATE (for married people). 400k/yr isn't upper middle class. That's the top 0.5%. To have
an effective tax rate of nearly 40% you'd have to make tens of millions per year (if you make $400,001, only that one dollar is taxed at the top
rate). I'm talking the top 0.01% or so.
But another problem with this idea can be illustrated with another paragraph from the article:
Under our current system, an American who works for a salary pays about twice the tax rate as someone who’s living off inherited money and doesn’t
work at all. We tax capital at half of what we tax labor. It’s a sweet deal if you work in finance, as many of our rich people do.
Suddenly inherited money is bad? Suddenly capital gains should be taxed at the same rate as wages (well, if they're both zero, then yes, I agree)?
Capital gains is what most people pay on their retirement, so do we want retirees to pay a bunch of extra taxes because they spent their whole lives
working and saving and investing but because they invested they should pay wage tax? Is that a conservative position now? Just so we can "get the
But the paragraph ends with more intellectual dishonesty, when he says it's a sweet deal if you work in finance is a bunch of BS. You only pay the
capital gains rate on investments longer than a year. So these day/swing trading financiers don 't get that rate. So what rate do they pay? They pay
the wage rate!
And what's with the demonization of the rich? why is it suddenly evil to be rich? Why is every rich guy "fleecing" the working class? That's not a
conservative position at all. Last I checked anyone in american work/save/take risk/profit/fail (other than some too big to fail banks).
The last paragraph I want to highlight is this one:
What kind of country do you want to live in? A fair country. A decent country. A cohesive country. A country whose leaders don’t accelerate the
forces of change purely for their own profit and amusement. A country you might recognize when you’re old.
This is a straight left wing talking point. It denies reality. The more the government tries to create fairness, the less fair things become. There's
no way America will ever be a cohesive country again (politically speaking) unless there is a mass culling of thought (which the leftist
authoritarians are trying their hardest to implement) or people (that will be their next step when their censorship fails). The american system of
government takes into account the greed of people and there is no system better at keeping their greed in check. It's not perfect, but perfection is
unattainable. Yes, we must combat new modes and methods but that's not what tucker is alluding to.
Alright, I lied, there is one other paragraph I'm going to talk about. He's discussing the breakdown of the family then he makes this crazy
This isn’t speculation. This is not propaganda from the evangelicals. It’s social science. We know it’s true. Rich people know it best of all.
That’s why they get married before they have kids. That model works. But increasingly, marriage is a luxury only the affluent in America can
First, how is marriage expensive? In my state a marriage license is $30. In the modern age of working wives, it's all the more affordable. Your two
incomes combine for a much better lifestyle. How in the world does he come to the conclusion that only the affluent can afford to be married? I got
married making 15k a year, 13 years ago (my wife worked too). It is a huge tax advantage to be married, so how is it too expensive for the
Now, there is a social decay around marriage but it's not based on economic status. It's based on lack of morality. It's directly correlated to the
decline of religion.
But back to the main point, this distancing from free market capitalism is really concerning to me because I can't go to the left and find free market
capitalists, and if the right is trending against free market capitalism where would I go if they succeed in pushing that out??
7-1-2019 by Dfairlite because: (no reason given)
edit on 7-1-2019 by Dfairlite because: (no reason given)