The Green Gap

In the Cold War, we feared a Missile Gap was a strategic weakness. Nowadays, we must awaken to the fact that the Green Gap is true strategic weakness: the nations whose economies will thrive in the coming years will not be those with the biggest factories, but those with the most sustainable, efficient, and ecological markets. What we require is a Strategic "Green Reserve" of ecological design to weather the coming changes that both climate and resource scarcity will force on the international economy.

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

Tax the Wealthy


Allowing someone to profit from the fruits of their labour is about just rewards, it's about advancement, it's about  creating growth and economic resilience.

Wealth redistribution is about equality, it's about humanity, and it's about doing the right thing.

Somewhere between the justice inherent in being rewarded for one's work and the humanity that is manifest in helping the downtrodden out of their vicious circles of poverty is a tenuous middle ground. In this middle ground, the rich are rich because they have contributed, and by deriving profit continue to contribute to society. In this middle ground, the poor are only poor because they are just starting out, but are given ample opportunity to apply themselves to their own emancipation from poverty. That's a pretty dynamic middle ground, and it would require good, stable governance to keep on such an even keel. That's why it's important to learn from our mistakes and make small but continuous error corrections to our budgetary calculations.

Here's one error correction we can make now.

Like I've said, giving more money to those with lots of money doesn't inspire job creation or economic expansion. That's what the lower 80% of income earners are good at. Sparing the rich from taxation is not a sacred cow. We can do it. It won't hurt the economy. As a matter of fact, it will assist the government in reducing debt, which, given the OECD's rosy picture for Canada's economy in 2011, should be a priority.

But it's also part and parcel of the humanity of wealth redistribution. Taxation isn't robbery or appropriation... it's just taxation. The rich still get to keep the fruits of their labour, but they get the additional karmic benefit of helping a new mother just starting out in life pay her rent and clothe her kids... or helping a guy starting his first job pay off his student loan. It's not only the right thing to do, but it creates more economic expansion and consumption than letting the rich keep the money. Who knew that doing the right thing would also help the economy?

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