Thomas Sowell: A distraction over income inequality
If nothing else, it is a much-needed distraction from the disasters of Obamacare and the various IRS, Benghazi and other Obama administration scandals.
Most of the households in the bottom 20 percent of income earners have nobody working. There are more heads of household working full-time and year-round in the top 5 percent than in the bottom 20 percent.
The more people who are in a non-income-earning mode, the greater the disparities with the incomes of those of us who have to work for a living, and who have to earn more to offset high tax rates. Yet liberals often act as if this is an injustice to those who don't work, rather than an injustice to those who do work, and whose taxes support those who don't.
Despite whatever good intentions some liberals may have had in creating the ever-growing welfare state, practical politicians know that more dependency means more votes for supporters of bigger government. There are no incentives for either politicians or the bureaucrats who run the welfare state agencies to get people off their dependency on government programs. Moreover, the eligibility rules create a very high cost to individuals who try to rise by getting a job and earning their own money.
Thomas Sowell is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and Stanford University. His website is www.tsowell.com.
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