Skip to comments.On Appeasing Envy
Posted on 07/30/2013 11:50:04 AM PDT by aquila48
Any attempt to equalize wealth or income by forced redistribution must only tend to destroy wealth and income. Historically the best the would-be equalizers have ever succeeded in doing is to equalize downward. This has even been caustically described as their intention. Your levellers, said Samuel Johnson in the mid-eighteenth century, wish to level down as far as themselves; but they cannot bear levelling up to themselves.
And in our own day we find even an eminent liberal like the late Mr. Justice Holmes writing: I have no respect for the passion for equality, which seems to me merely idealizing envy.
(Excerpt) Read more at mises.org ...
But whereas greed is for the most part self regulating (if I want something that you have we must modulate our respective greeds, barring the use of force), envy doesn't seem to have any similar intrinsic control.
It has often been said that power corrupts. But it is perhaps equally important to realize that weakness, too, corrupts. Power corrupts the few, while weakness corrupts the many. Hatred, malice, rudeness, intolerance, and suspicion are the faults of weakness. The resentment of the weak does not spring from any injustice done to them but from their sense of inadequacy and impotence. We cannot win the weak by sharing our wealth with them. They feel our generosity as oppression.
Remember, the truly selfish people are those who expect others to provide for them.
Envy is the number one motivator for most democratic voters.
Income equality is only found in a gulag - unless you are guard.
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