Tuesday, May 6, 2014

The Best Response To Piketty Is "Let Them Eat Cellphones"

The Financial Times is critical of most conservative responses to Piketty's book.  One can't argue with his evidence about the growth in inequality.  The better response is to argue that inequality is not as important as the consumer choices that are available today.  We had less inequality in 1960 than we have today but the choices available to consumers are much richer than they were in 1960.  A more equal society is not necessarily more important than the consumer goods that have become more valuable to modern consumers.  They would choose to live in today's world with their cellphones and other goods that would have been unavailable in 1960.

There is little support in this article, however, for a society dominated by inherited wealth.  It argues that conservatives ought to beat liberals to the punch by promoting a tax on property and a more progressive inheritance tax. 

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