Elizabeth Warren: the Mathematics of Warm Fuzziness

Below is a transcript of Warren’s remarks: “I hear all this, you know, ‘Well, this is class warfare, this is whatever. No. There is nobody in this country who got rich on his own — nobody. “You built a factory out there? Good for you. But I want to be clear. You moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for. You hired workers the rest of us paid to educate. You were safe in your factory because of police-forces and fire-forces that the rest of us paid for. You didn’t have to worry that marauding bands would come and seize everything at your factory — and hire someone to protect against this — because of the work the rest of us did. “Now look, you built a factory and it turned into something terrific, or a great idea. God bless — keep a big hunk of it. But part of the underlying social contract is, you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along.”

A relative posted this on my Facebook Wall. She knows where I stand and enjoys provoking me, Her comment was, “Napalm!” Presumably meaning that Ms Warrens argument blows away any refutation

I had already seen this as it made quite a stir, but had dismissed it as the usual bushwa, unworthy of comment. But seeing this come from my relative, a prosperous inhabitant of Northern Virginia, comfortably ensconced  within the the  confines of the permanent   government prosperity bubble, a woman who fits exactly the Obama Campaign 2012 target group of well-paid white professionals after its abandonment of white working men, it gave me pause. The strategy is working.

 

 

My Facebook response:

Barf! As P.J. O’Rourke said, Liberalism is communism sold by the drink, and this lady has downed quite a few. A fatuous One pctr of the academic academic nomenklatura, who would lack for nothing in the people’s paradise she advocates. Cf, Milovan Djilas, “The New Class.”

 

Napalm hardly necessary: a match applied to the Marxist flatulence here would do the trick. Ms Warren seems to believe that a primordial government arrived in North America and then built an infrastructure, perhaps using gold they found in treasure caves, and then business made money, and she is now presenting the bill. Where does she think the revenue for building roads and bridges comes from? From the productive sector, not government. She presents an absurd, ex nihilo argument that is only coherent to one who believes the people(small c people, left talk for the state ) has the primary claim to property, whether extant or newly created.

While faintly praising her example factory owner for achievement, Warren says it is “the rest of us” who paid for the infrastructure and ancillary services that support the enterprise. Leaving aside fees and levies specific to industrial construction, which can be quite onerous, where did “the rest of us” get the money that was taxed in order to pay for the civic goods the industrialist is so greedily exploiting?

Ms. Warren, a tenured professor at Harvard, author of many published journal articles as well as mass market books on personal finance, certainly has a more extensive corpus of work than the President she echoes, but credentials don’t make an argument. Clearly, most community organizers and professors have little understanding of capital and competition.

Neither Ms Warren nor the President have any experience in ventures aimed at profit. Ms. Warren might try a turn at introspection. Have not “the rest of us” helped Harvard achieve its status as a sanctum for thinkers whose ideas need not stand up to real world conditions and enjoy job protection as iron bound as any shop steward? Harvard may be private, but it is no stranger to federal money. Even better, major universities rarely if ever go out of business. Harvard can not only raise the price for its brand but use it to obtain government grants, and encourage students to mortgage their futures for the privilege of a Harvard education.

Fair enough; that’s the way it works.

In my Facebook Post, I called Ms Warren a “One Percenter.” Her campaign finance disclosures, vague as they are allowed to be under the rules still indicate that she is definitely one of those under-fleeced millionaires the Republicans have been protecting from a righteous shearing.

Well, one might think, she, like Warren Buffet, Mark Damon and others of prominence are taking a principled stand, even though it will cause her to pay more.

I doubt it somehow. Such people have access to legal and accounting services that will keep their assessments quite comfortable within the convoluted and ever expanding tax code.

Even were they to be shorn completely down to their well cared for skins, it wouldn’t make much of a difference. The WSJ published a story stating that the entire income of the plus 250k crowd would not pay for the deficit. This was gleefully debunked, but the concept is worth further examination.

From factcheck.org

But all of the taxable income of those earning more than $100,000 in 2008 was actually $3.4 trillion, more than double the figure published in the editorial. We checked the math ourselves using IRS data. The Journal ran a correction on April 19 on page A16. The online version of the editorial was corrected two days later. The bottom of the editorial now says: “An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that the total taxable income of Americans earning over $100,000 in 2008 was $1.582 trillion. The correct figure is $3.4 trillion.”

If you go to the OMB site, you’ll find something rather disingenuously called “The President’s Budget.” Disingenuous because this budget has never been submitted to Congress. Also a little sneaky is that while some programs are touted with costs and “savings” the total of the budget can only be found by clicking on to some excel tables, which will turn quite a few people off.( Even I can make graphs with excel spreadsheets; why don’t these guys? Would it then be too easy to see what is going on?)

2011 total expenditures are predicted to be 381889 million(That’s how we say “trillion.”)

So, if all those rich people have an equal or better year as they did in 2008, and the White house projections are correct, we will have a half trillion or less deficit. If we take ALL their taxable income. The following year, we could confiscate their assets,as they would have given up on earning money.

A look at some IRS stats will show you that the rich are already paying the most, and at progressive rates, while about half the country pays nothing at all. Even if you accept this cultural Marxist frenzy of envy based redistribution, we aren’t going to be able to tax our way out of this. Not on the rich. Look for the 25000,00 – or is it 200,000, accounts vary – floor to descend.

The Administration knows these things to be true; its supporters refuse to see. Like my relative, they go to bed at night and sleep well in the complacency of unearned virtue and bogus “sacrifice.”.

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