Elizabeth Warren, Metropulse and the Progressive mumbo jumbo
The quote by Elizabeth Warren, Harvard Law professor and maven of the Consumer Protection Agency, who is running for Scott Brown's Senate seat in Massachusetts has been making the rounds. She says that nobody got rich on their own. That the rest of us paid for the roads on which the goods went to market. We paid for the police and fire protection, we paid for the education of the workers who were hired to produce the product and that "part of the underlying social contract is you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid that comes along". This was essentially what the editor of Knoxville's alternative newspaper Metropulse said to me during a local radio talk show. I said that it was the most ridiculous thing I had ever heard. It turns out that this is basic Progressive mantra. It is stupid at is very core. It is assuming that the rich and the rich before them did not contribute to the social infrastructure. Of course this is nonsense because in our "progressive" tax system, those with the highest incomes pay the greatest proportion of the taxes. It is also assuming that there are no net benefits to society coming from the activities of business - that business only takes and not gives. Wrong. The only expropriators in society is the government. Business must pay all sorts of taxes, by employing workers they provide wages, they educate further their workers, provide all sorts of benefits directly and indirectly to both workers and society. The progressive mantra ignores all of this. It is truly amazing that well educated people actually believe this nonsense.
Harold A. Black is professor emeritus in the Department of Finance, University of Tennessee, Knoxville having retired after 24 years of service. He has served on the faculties of American University, Howard University, the University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill and the University of Florida. His government service includes the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and as a Board Member of the National Credit Union Administration. He also has served on the boards of directors Home Savings of America and its parent company, H. F. Ahmanson & Co., Irwindale, California prior to its merger with Washington Mutual Savings Bank, on the board of New Century Financial Corporation, Irvine, California, then the nation’s largest real estate investment trust and as director and later chairman of the Nashville Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. He writes an occasional article for the Knoxville News-Sentinel at http://www.knoxnews.com/staff/dr-harold-black/. His web page is haroldablackphd.com