[FoRK] Obama: Redistributionist, pro-capitalist, or both?

Jeff Bone jbone at place.org
Tue Aug 26 17:00:57 PDT 2008


On Aug 26, 2008, at 6:34 PM, J. Andrew Rogers wrote:

>
> On Aug 26, 2008, at 4:05 PM, Russell Turpin wrote:
>> I suspect, though, that most of the real antagonism at that notion
>> isn't concern with its macroeconomic consequences, or even selfish
>> concern some might have from paying a little more on income over
>> $250K, but a deep philosophic opposition to the notion that the tax
>> code should be used to such purpose.
>
>
> While I agree sort of, this is not really the point being argued.   
> Yes, using the income tax that way is philosophically bad and has  
> some mildly negative economic repercussions that could probably be  
> offset with smarter policy elsewhere.  There is also the matter of  
> massive increases in entitlement spending being proposed that has to  
> be paid for somehow.
>
> However, if you paid close attention you probably would have noticed  
> that neither I nor Jeff (I think) are really talking about *income  
> tax* rates.  We are talking about capital gains tax rates.

Of course.

But talking about abstract all-in "marginal tax rates" is both (a) an  
intentional device for sweeping the actual discussion (whether on  
effects, social justice, fairness, etc.) under the rug, and (b) for  
some (though not Russell, I'm sure) a red flag about economic naivete.

jb



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