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View Diary: Warren Buffet's Son Calls For Revolution. Well, Sort Of. (66 comments)

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  •  Job 1 is to Put Stiff Brakes on the Ability of (33+ / 0-)

    individuals to gain beginning some modest number of times median income. Make it impossible for the wealth to concentrate and the whole spectrum of sociopathic economic activity no longer has a purpose.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Sun Jul 28, 2013 at 10:52:19 AM PDT

    •  That would be a start (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      whenwego, ChemBob, Lilredhead, elwior

      but the reality is that wealth always recaptures any effort to reduce its accumulation. That hasn't just been going on since the Gilded Age, it's been going on since the Roman Empire and probably much earlier.

      A very simple exercise in mathematical modeling reveals that the problem is inherent in money itself: accumulating money creates a positive feedback for accumulating more money. Any system that attempts to reduce this positive feedback is eventually corrupted -- bought -- so that the positive feedback increases. The result is always that accumulation proceeds until wealth is concentrated in a very few hands, and everyone else is poor. At that point you get a collapse of the system, "barbarian invasions", and a feudal dark ages run by warlords.

      The (mathematical) solution is obvious: the problem is in money itself, so the solution is to get rid of money. But that idea is still too radical for most people to consider.

    •  Ten times median income should be the beginning (7+ / 0-)

      of high marginal tax rates.

      Anyone who cannot live 10x what 1/2 the country has to live on doesn't deserve any more money anyway.

      Follow high marginal tax rates with solid, inescapable Estate Taxes for anything above a certain value. All the huge family trusts and other tax shelters need to be corralled.  

      As long as the very rich simply become richer and richer without regard to the living conditions of the rest of the country, they are a threat to our survival as a civilized nation.  I have a lot of experience in 3rd world conditions. It is upsetting to me to see those in the 3rd world have improving situations, while here in the USA, we're tearing apart our society and civilization at the hands of the Tea Party, the RightWing Religionists, and the Republicans.

      "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

      by YucatanMan on Sun Jul 28, 2013 at 04:20:32 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  100% marginal tax rate (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        greengemini, mkor7, Kristina40

        I'm personally fond of having a top marginal tax rate of 100%.  We almost got one in the 1940s, and it still ended up close (in the 90s).

        The first time anyone advocated a 100% marginal tax rate was 1880.  Felix Adler, the head of the New York Society of Ethical Culture, argued that point in a lecture series on "just measures of social reform": http://papers.ssrn.com/...

        “We demand a graduated tax, so imposed that if on a small income it be 3 percent, it shall increase in proportion to the means of the person taxed, to 10 and 15 and 30  and 50 percent, and that at last, when a certain high and abundant sum has been reached, amply sufficient for all the comforts and true refinements of life, the tax shall rise to 100 percent of all that is beyond—that is to say, that all beyond shall be taxed out of existence, so far as the individual is concerned”

        “I would protect the individual in his right to the private enjoyment of all that honestly belongs to him, of all that he can truly use for the human purposes of life; and only that which does not rightfully belong to him, only that which is to him merely a means of pomp and pride and power—such power as no individual ought to possess—would I have remanded into the general fund of society, where, in the name of justice, it belongs.

        ....

        “These things will not be changed until the common people take the matter in hand; until they are better instructed in regard to their rights and opportunities; until they find legislators who truly represent their needs, and until, in all calmness and all seriousness, but with all firmness, they declare their will in words that cannot be mistaken, and enact the only possible measures of relief.

        (Emphasis added--to highlight my favorite part of it)

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