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    The New Yorker | Sheelah Kolhatkar | 12/30/19 | 44 min
    8 reads5 comments
    9.0
    The New Yorker
    8 reads
    9.0
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    • bill
      Top reader of all timeScoutScribe
      7 months ago

      A recent study by the economists Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman found that, as a result of cuts to estate and corporate taxes, as well as the 2017 G.O.P. tax bill, the four hundred richest Americans pay a lower over-all tax rate than any other group in the country. In a Times Op-Ed, Saez and Zucman wrote, “This is the tax system of a plutocracy.”

      That’s one of several fascinating and quite unsettling little nuggets in this excellent, easy-to-read piece.

      There’s no need to banter about Abigail Disney, her personality and values, although it’s a bit hard to resist. She’s quite a character, to say the least. The more important/productive thing, from my perspective, would be to try to clarify the problem and actually address it. I know plenty of people who don’t think rising inequality is an issue. So that’s the place to start.

      The part with all the rich people in an orchid-filled room arguing about the definition of rich is perfect. Secrecy and shame are the huge factors. I personally know lots of mega-wealthy people who don’t have the emotional capacity to confront their own wealth, so they develop these traumatizing mental blocks, as an attempt to hide from reality.

      • erica7 months ago

        Chuck Collins sounds dope.

        I'm grateful the author touched on the shame of the rich by quoting Abigail Disney:

        In their hearts, they know that something is inherently wrong with what they have, as compared with what everybody else has.

        I can't believe that our country's policy decisions are driven by this idea, even though it's been widely disproven:

        reducing taxes on businesses and the wealthy will benefit low- and middle-income workers.

        I appreciate Erica Payne for being so explicit:

        You want people to suffer and die earlier, because your greed is more important to you than another human being.

        • bill
          Top reader of all timeScoutScribe
          7 months ago

          Yupvote!

    • Alexa
      Scout
      7 months ago

      Perfect timing, the conversations of "is capitalism broken? but what else?" has been coming up in my friend group a lot.

      Some real thought provoking things here, like the tax rates for mega-rich etc. As a Nevadan, I see a ton of mega-rich companies getting insane tax breaks, and a lot of people sheltering companies here.

      The article made quite a dig too with calling out people for valuing money & greed over other humans. I'm interested to see more like this.

      • bill
        Top reader of all timeScoutScribe
        7 months ago

        Yup. Stuff like this is pretty aggressive, but I think true:

        “Our goal is to begin to challenge the wealthy to understand that inequality is at such a destabilizing level right now that, by sitting on the sidelines, you’re effectively adding to the problem,” Pym said.