Thursday, 13 May 2021

"The vast bulk of the wealth created by 'the economy' is in the hands of ordinary people."


"I want to focus on [this claim]: '... the rich are capturing almost all the gains of economic growth these days.'
    "This is classic socialist rhetoric. The idea is that 'society' creates economic growth, and that the wealth from that growth is a social (or tribal) product, not a result of individual productiveness, and that whatever wealth someone has is simply 'captured' from that pile of tribal wealth. 
    "But 'societies' don’t create wealth.... only individuals create wealth through their own productive efforts (with the aid of free trade). The sentiment that informs that quote is the savage’s (or socialist’s) view of wealth as a fixed given, in which the 'distribution' of wealth is a zero-sum game....
    "[Also,] wealth is not money, ... money is not net worth. Money is a means of the exchange of wealth, not actual wealth. Net worth is measured in dollars, but is not actual money. So, yes, the richest people have a high net worth, which is [generally] held in the form of stock in productive companies. As to actual wealth -- that is, stuff -- the wealth of the top 1% is an inconsequential pittance compared to what others hold.
    "For example, the bottom 50% of households in America encompasses all of those earning less than about $75,000 per year. That group owns roughly half of all autos in America.... If you add in people earning up to $150,000, the auto ownership ration jumps to 91.6%.... You can play this game with cell phones, homes, food, central heating, running water, air conditioning, and any other mass-market category of wealth ad infinitum, and come up with the same observation. The vast bulk of the wealth created by 'the economy' is in the hands of ordinary people."
~ Mike LaFerrara, from his post 'Star-Ledger Uses Socialist Rhetoric to Debunk Christie’s Socialist Accusations Against Biden'

1 comment:

  1. "Money is a means of the exchange of wealth, not actual wealth."

    Money is a technology that enables all kinds of otherwise impossible things. I'm not sure why it can't be seen as wealth, no less than a hammer - a technology that enables all kinds of otherwise impossible things - is wealth. If people treated it more as wealth (given a proper understanding of wealth) they might perhaps be more protective of it than they are.

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