|This worker in Bangladesh makes a few
pennies an hour. How come no one is
seeking income equality for her?|
In our day we would have called Gary H. Collins a communist. Collins, a lawyer and president of the Council for a Livable World, a political action committee devoted to nuclear disarmament, has written a book about government mandated "income equality" called "The Last Election."
According to a release his publicist sent us, Collins "believes that income inequality is the most important issue facing America today."
He quotes a Gallop Poll where he claims two out of three Americans are "dissatisfied" with wealth distribution in the U.S.
Wealth distribution is a term of art which implies it's government's job to take money from people who earned too much money and give it to those who did not earn as much even if they did not work for it.
This was once called communism.
"There is almost nothing happening to reverse the trend (of income inequality)," says Collins, lamenting that "top earners" continue to be the only group with income growth.
Gee top earners have income growth?
Why not become a top earner then?
Instead Collins wants to "shake up American politics" by "mobiliz(ing) voters around income inequality." Now here is a question for Collins: If it is morally right to have income equality, why limit it to America?
Why not strive for worldwide income equality?
What bleeding heart liberal would think in terms of only his own geographical boundaries?
According to Gallup, the median income worldwide is $10,000 per household.
In order to achieve true income equality, the average American would have to redistribute her income
above $10,000 to the poor around the world.
But Collins may not be advocating for worldwide income equality. He may want income equality only with those richer than he.
If Gallup polled Americans on welfare or minimum wage to ask if they would like to see the government require those who make 10 times what they receive on welfare or their minimum wage job share half their wealth with them, what do you think the poll results would be?
Now suppose these same people were asked if they would share half their welfare check with a poor family from Bhutan whose head of household makes four cents an hour, or split their minimum wage in half - and give it to a worker in China who make $1.19 an hour - what do you think Americans would poll about income equality?
Compared to a person in Bangladesh, working for nine cents an hour, and almost starving all the time, the average welfare recipient in America is 10 times richer. The welfare recipient is a rich person in his eyes, getting welfare for doing nothing, while he is making nine cents an hour slaving in the sun.
What Collins and the income redistributors forgets is that wealth is relative. Collins forgets that wealth is created by working, thinking, inventing, doing and exerting. Wealth is created.
Wealth is changing and moving, gained by one, lost by another. There is always wealth to be had, because people create it by working. Hard.
"That some should be rich shows that others may become rich, and hence is just encouragement to industry and enterprise," said Lincoln.
Sure opportunities are unequal, and some will work harder than others; some are smarter than others; luck is a factor.
Sometimes the harder you work, the luckier you become.
So why is that the income inequality proponents always want more income for them and less for others and never vice versa?
As a rule we don't support it.
Nevertheless, l there is one form of income equality that the Niagara Falls Reporter supports correcting: Politicians pay themselves pretty high salaries. They give themselves retirement benefits and perks that generally set their own wealth well above those who pay their salaries through mandatory taxes.
We support an income equality law that requires every politician from federal to local to earn the median income of the people they serve.
For instance the median income in Niagara Falls is $26,800. So elected and appointed city officials should earn $26,800.
The median income of all Americans is $51,017.
So Congressmen, who make $174,000, should take a $123,000 pat cut and get some true income equality.
And finally for all those who support income equality, such as Gary Collins, when these give a sizeable portion of their income to those around the world making far less, instead of trying to persuade lazy Americans to become communists, then, and only then, will we believe a word he has to say.