What is it about income inequality that can be called “apocalyptic”? That’s an extreme word. Surely a person would only use such a word to describe something horrifying and deadly! Consider for a moment if income inequality was actually a good thing. Let that sink in. How could that be? What about those horrific 1% oppressing all the rest of us? Maybe it’s not something to fear but rather something to plan for.
Income inequality, as you guessed, isn’t a bad thing. It’s a product of choices. I will never be a millionaire. Not because someone else became one and because they did I no longer can be. Rather because I don’t want to be. I’ve not geared my life in such a way as to make money a priority. The fact that someone else has done so takes nothing away from me. Our economy isn’t like a pie that has 10 pieces and if someone eats one there are only 9 left. The potential for wealth is there for those who make it a priority. That includes making wise decisions concerning how to obtain it.
How do we get from personal liberty being exercised in making economic choices to throwing around words like apocalypse? Some economists theorize that income inequality could cause instability as the money gets stuck in savings. I think the assumption that there won’t be consumption is quite a presumption. They seem to think that rich people are all like Scrooge McDuck that just sit on their money and never spend it or perhaps that most specially greedy, strong and wicked worm called Smaug the dragon from the Hobbit who sat so long on his treasure that it fused into his body encrusting him with gold and jewels. Most certainly that’s what the rich want to do with their money. So while it is a theoretical possibility it’s not in keeping with human nature and is therefore not much of a probability.
That being the case then why do people march around with picket signs slamming the 1%? If another man being rich doesn’t make you poor and may actually be a benefit to you in multiple ways why hold it against him? That might even be a weak way to put it. It seems the left doesn’t just hold it againt them but rather it seems they nearly hate the rich. As an aside, this is likely one reason Trump did so well. Unlike Romney, Trump embrassed his wealth and I think people. Voters may just be tired of the wealthy getting bashed and voted for someone wealthy who was proud of his wealth.
It’s really a difference in temperment. One group looks at the wealthy and says, “That could be me. I want to be wealthy someday.” The other group sees the rich and either through a sense of pesamism thinks they can never achieve that, or more likely they are driven by jealousy. So often “fairness” is the underlying motivation for everything the left promotes. Equality in justice is not only possible, it’s vital, it’s a foundational principle of liberty. Equality in wealth, known as substantial equality (substantial means pertaining to substances), is impossible and undesirable. Income inequality is a natural extension of that truth. It’s not a thing to be feared or fought. Embrace it.
For a quick primer on this issue I’ve included a well done video from Prager U.
Tall buildings represent the wealthy; short ones represent the poor. What’s missing? The middle class.