Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Myths of Income

It's often said by liberals, "progressives", and Democrats that "the middle class is shrinking." Of course, that's not true, but it makes for exciting news, doesn't it? If a journalist can "sniff out the truth" about declining wages, he's onto something, esp. a promotion. But today's media and DNC rarely get economics right, which most certainly includes the income equality myth.

Income inequality is a fallacy primarily because it says that just because the guys at the top have so much more money than you somehow that means you're making less. Well, I hate to say it, but that's a load of crap. For example, if you are in a business contest with all the other students in your class, and they do better than you, does that mean you have less money? No, of course not! You still got the money you made, and they made the money they made. It just means they made more!

You have to put things like this in perspective, or else you're gonna wind up looking like an idiot who doesn't think things through. In fact, contrary to popular belief, incomes for the lower and middle classes have risen sharply, even over just the past half century- the post-war economic boom! Don't believe me? Look it up. As the rich have gotten richer, so have the the other classes!! Sure, the rise for other classes wasn't as sharp as the rich's, but who cares?? You're richer. The per capita GDP (or the average individual income, in a sense) is $47,000! That's a lot of money. Yes, household income hasn't risen nearly as fast as individual, but why would it? Households usually have at least 2 people. It's pretty costly to take care of many people if you're the only breadwinner.

Besides, why the hell would big business purposely lower wages for everyone so much, or lay off so many people, that we become a 3rd-World country? Do you honestly think that's a good strategy? Hell no! Big businesses would lose an enormous amount revenue, and they would go out of business because we would be able to afford their products much less. Big businesses may be cunning, "evil" (as some liberals claim), and greedy, but they're not stupid. A free enterprise system has lifted far more people out of poverty than all the socialist and Communist countries combined! Why don't liberals ever see this? They always focus on the bad things in economics: "We're becoming a 3rd-World nation" "The rich are making more than ever" "Wages have stagnated since the 1970s." None of these claims are true, but it sure makes for good campaign rhetoric, doesn't it? If you can convince the masses you're telling the truth, that's all that matters in politics anymore, right?

Wages have hardly stagnated, except maybe for some lower-skilled jobs. But that's to be expected. I mean, how much more can you possibly make in a sector which has essentially "maxed out" and is becoming less and less important to overall growth as time goes by, such as manufacturing? I'm happy for postindustrialization. It means overall growth and productivity is higher! It means that, eventually, lower-skilled folks will have to graduate high school and go to college, at least for a few years, to get the skills needed for real jobs that require intelligence, not just learning how to operate a machine or put something together. Anyone with a little strength, good eyesight, fair listening skills and manual dexterity can do that!

Besides, what's so bad about income inequality? I'm glad there are rich people at the top to keep the economy going, and I'm even gladder that there are wealthy companies that hire lots of people and make their lives better through high wages. It's often been said that the best cure for poverty is not welfare, food stamps, AFDC, WIC, Medicaid, or any of those entitlements, but a job, preferably a high-paying one. I couldn't agree more.

Idiot liberals like to talk about how the Gini coefficient is lower in many European nations with larger welfare states. What they don't tell you is that these nations also have much more burdensome business regulations, higher taxes, and high unemployment. Unemployment in Western Europe was similar to the U.S.'s in the 1960s, but then it stagnated with the introduction of huge government.

Simply put, it's hard as hell to get the kind of economic growth over there that America has, and it's even harder to become a billionaire or even a millionaire. America has at least a few million millionaires. Few European countries come close, I would imagine. In poll after poll, Americans are consistently ranked highest when it comes to who thinks they have the greatest social mobility. That has to mean something.

When are liberals gonna learn?

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