I've been having a bit of a family squabble with a nephew of mine and thought the back and forth would be enlightening. Now don't get me wrong, he's a good young man and I'm very fond of him. But like most these days, he's just never been exposed to the rigors of opposing thought. Put another way, he's spent a lifetime in higher education--today's foremost bastion of indoctrination. How do I know? Well, a) I've been there, but b) all of the talking points coming from these kids properly tutored to 'rage against the machine' sound exactly alike. Good little conformists, all.
We started out on the minimum wage (my opposition is proof I 'hate the middle class') and the conversation morphed into the following response (brace yourselves, bet you've never heard this before):
"Yes, big government conservatism. Look at record corporate profits, political privilege and the stagnation of the American middle class. There is an obvious redistribution of wealth happening. Sometimes I want to become a complete pessimist about our country. I only wish that Americans would go to the voting polls as enthusiastically as they go to Walmart on Black Friday."
Now, there are so many false premises here (only govt.force redistributes, not market choice) one hardly knows where to begin, but I thought for sure I was talking with Ward Churchill or George Soros or..well, you get the point. Let's take 'em one by one, shall we?
1) The minimum wage. We're 'the richest country on earth' so naturally, if someone else HAS the money, it's perfectly fine to take it from them by force (didn't Mom teach you that?) via taxation or regulation. Ethics aside, those Mom & Pop restaurant owners can hardly afford to pay their teenage help $15/hr. plus benefits. In fact, here's a closer look at the the profit margins for such enterprises:
2) Record corporate profits. Well, right...record corporate bankruptcies would be much better. By all means, take away the government favors, especially the ones going to those companies whose CEOs supported President Obama (see GE, Google, Costco, etc.) But the truth is there is no such thing as 'profits,' only costs. The cost of labor (wages) and the cost of capital (dividends from profits). You might as well take Grandma's pension because without profits it's gone.
3) Stagnating Middle Class. To be sure, median income is still down, according to the Census Bureau, 4% from 2008--you know, the year Barack Obama was elected by Occupy Wall Street. Apparently, a redistributive welfare state blowout in the trillions did little to alleviate income inequality. Then again, $15 trillion on public assistance programs spent since LBJ's War on Poverty hasn't changed the unemployment rate either. How ironic then that the biggest burden on households these days comes from the rising cost of government controlled enterprises, i.e., health care and education.
The idiots hiding behind the Guy Fawkes masks like to deride the 'politically privileged.' What the minions fail to comprehend is that the beneficiaries of today's corporate state are the enterprises of the left. Billions in subsidies for green energy firms & union dominated (Detroit) industries; government cartels for utilities and now health insurance cos; a Fed policy of easy money designed for Wall Street,; and of course, billions for 'higher education' so upper middle class professors with lifetime employment can indoctrinate the unsuspecting.