Tuesday, July 24, 2012

If 'You Didn't Make That', then It's Okay for Government to Take It

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In 2008, Obama instructed Joe the Plumber on 'sharing the wealth'. In 2012, Obama instructed the rest of us upon what his underlying philosophy rests. Mimicking or channeling the words of Fauxcahontas, Elizabeth Warren, Obama uttered the infamous words, that "if you were successful, you didn't make that!"

Last week, in "The Platte River President* on Economics", we focused on the wrong headed and shallow notion that one's success was more rooted in the infrastructure that government provides, rather than hard work, good ideas and self reliance in making one's business work. It was noted in passing, and elaborated upon in the comments, the inconvenient truth for this administration, that the schools and roads and bridges, among other things, like public libraries, that Obama was crediting with the success of making business prosperous, were in all likelihood paid for in greater proportion by those prosperous businessmen than by society at large.

Since Obama seems more at home in fictional scenarios than running on his actual record, we will for the moment pretend that Obama is the president of Springfield, home to Homer Simpson and his boss, the eeeeeeeevil Charles Montgomery Burns.

Mr. Burns lives in a palatial mansion and owns a nuclear power place. Mr. Burns pays more in property taxes than the hapless Homer who works for him. And though the fictional Mr. Burns must have contributed far more in taxes than his employee, Homer and his family were given access to those same roads, bridges and schools that benefitted the wealthy, while paying but a fraction of their cost.

Mr. Burns was childless and therefore was subsidizing the education or the townspeople with children. Yes, he benefitted from an educated work force and easy access to his business, he paid, by far, a greater percentage of his wealth to build and maintain that infrastructure, in addition to providing the jobs and power the community needs to prosper.

Enough of fiction, you might say! The Simpsons aren't real! Okay. How about this example? You are being bombarded by the Left that Big Oil and Big Business are evil, and greedy and make their wealth at your expense. You are supposed to at least envy them if not hate them. But, consider Andrew Carnegie...

Andrew Carnegie made his wealth from Big Steel. In addition to providing many good paying jobs and products used around the world, Mr. Carnegie was a philanthropist. He contributed millions of dollars to building thousands of libraries here in the US and around the world. (Notice how I snuck "public libraries" into Obama's infrastructure list?) The epitome or acme of a musical performance was once considered to performing at "Carnegie Hall". A beautiful concert hall, contributed to the community by the eeeeeeeevil capitalist, Andrew Carnegie.

Funny what people will do when allowed to keep more of their own money!

But, is it really theirs to give? Ah! According to the Fauxcahontas/Obama wing of the Democrat party, your so called "accomplishments" all took place, the Fauxbamists say , as a product of our collectivist society. Therefore, if you "didn't build it", then why should you solely enjoy its benefits? Is it not the duty of government to "spread that wealth" more equitably among those less fortunate (so long as they vote early and often?).

What Obama proposes in the name of "fairness" is, in reality, a covert attack on personal property rights. It is a rationale for the government to redistribute what you have. After all, if you cannot be credited with having legitimately earning it, then why can't the government come in and relieve you of it?

And that, my friends, is Obama in a nutshell. A government big enough to give things to you is big enough to take things from you.

Cross posted at LCR, Say Anything