There is an article today on The Hill.com about Rep. Peter DeFazio of Oregon. He's an occasional critic of President Obama for not being aggressive enough with his "spread the wealth" agenda.
This argument suggests there is one static pool of capital that needs equitable/fair distribution. If Bill Gates has $1 then someone else is lacking that dollar. Nevermind that capital is created and destroyed every day. And taking a dollar from Bill Gates doesn't necessarily make anyone richer.
Rather than making the pool of wealth bigger, small minds focus on taking from some and giving to others. Read your Bastiat or Hayek lately? The net result is that everyone is worse off. But don't tell that to DeFazio. He has his reasons.
Where does this thinking come from besides a weak economics education? What drives the righteous indignation?
According to The Hill, "poking a stick at those in power is what DeFazio does." That sounds good. A modern day Robin Hood? Not exactly.
His deep philosophical underpinning:
"[Fazio] gives partial credit for his special brand of liberalism to having worked at a country club as a teenager. Each summer, his father ran a camp for troubled inner-city kids on Cape Cod, where they caddied for golfers at a country club. DeFazio would work alongside the kids.
“They were servants for the rich, as was I,” he said. “I shagged golf balls for rich people. I carried golf clubs for rich people, and I learned very early on, when I was pretty young, that this was a group of people that had nothing special to offer to me or to society.”
DeFazio seems to overlook the fact that he and the other kids had a summer JOB. Many teens these days would love such a luxury. They too would learn that not everyone is friendly. My mother taught me it takes all kinds to make a world. Communists and capitalists alike.
A few haughty rich folks playing golf taught DeFazio that the wealthy are worthless. Apparently the representative isn't familiar with economics OR logic. First of all, he was on Cape Cod. Isn't haughtiness a virtue in New England?
Besides, the percentage of "worthless" rich people is probably no higher than that of the wider population. Not one to let logic interfere with a perceived slight, DeFazio felt like a "servant". It obviously left a bad taste in his mouth.
I work for rich people too. Regardless of how they treat me, I don't see myself as a servant and certainly don't feel like one.
Servant no more, it's payback time for DeFazio.
What does this attitude "offer" our society? A long hard road ahead.
I feel sorry for DeFazio and even more for our country. Class warfare is candy for the weak-minded. It tastes good going down, but it just makes you fat and lazy. Better to earn money carrying a golf bag. How many of today's billionaires started in the mail room? They didn't get bitter and seek revenge.
For the idle, rich golfers in the audience, carry your own bag or take a cart. I'm sure those poor kids would have been better off without a summer job!?!!
Certainly we'd be better off without DeFazio and his emotional baggage in Congress. Question: Is DeFazio a public SERVANT?
I think not. He wants respect!
Disclosure: I'm not rich. I don't play golf. And I tip well.