This is a war, our weapons are our ideas, I am a blacksmith.
Why am I a Liberal?
As a young man in college I was not always the most diligent student. One weekend, near the end of term, was particularly eventful and I found myself on Monday morning sitting, looking at a Dynamics final and no memory of any of the fine formulas we had studied that semester. Then I remembered F=ma. From that kernel I was able to derive all of the formulas I needed and ended up doing pretty well. More importantly, I realized the importance of fundamental concepts; I found that if one has a good understanding of core principles the smaller details are easier to work out. This led me a few years ago to ask myself, aside from the individual policies which align my thinking with “liberals”; why am I a liberal?
After some consideration I arrived on four succinct statements, which I believe also gave me some insight to what motivates the “other” side.
I am a parent.
It is only natural that parents do all they can for their children, however as wealth accumulates this presents a threat to democracy. This is the threat that concerned Jefferson when he spoke of the need for inheritance taxes, not as a form of revenue but a means to protect the democracy from citizens that might become too powerful, and then threaten the will of the people. It is easy to see how this has become the case in America today.
The dangers of inherited wealth to our economy are not unlike Monarchy to the health of any nation, when power is derived from birthright rather than one’s labor it is more often foolishly applied. As more and more of our economy becomes “inherited wealth” it becomes more of a target for con men and less a tool for innovators. The world’s financial power has been diverted from improving the human condition into money making schemes designed to enrich those who create them.
I do have some specific suggestions that I feel would be helpful long term:
Public financing for public elections
Flat rate Social Security Tax, first dollar to last all forms of income
Index minimum wage to the average increase in CEO pay for the S&P 500
That’s about it, that shouldn’t be too hard to do, right?
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