Tuesday, May 15, 2007

The Sunny Optimism of Thomas Sowell

In his most recent column, conservative economist Thomas Sowell takes the left to task for its supposed anger, particularly its anger over tax rates for the rich. He claims that most of this anger is directed at corporate CEOs rather than at gadabout heirs like Paris Hilton. This is ridiculous since Democratic criticisms of tax cuts have focused largely on cuts in estate and inheritence taxes, even going so far as to label them the "Paris Hilton Tax Cut."

But aside from Sowell's arguments about tax rates, it seems a bit rich to be lectured on anger by someone who wrote this eye-popper a few weeks back:

When I see the worsening degeneracy in our politicians, our media, our educators, and our intelligentsia, I can’t help wondering if the day may yet come when the only thing that can save this country is a military coup.

But not an angry coup.


Dave S. said...

You almost have to work hard to be as lazy as Sowell was when he wrote that. Two things struck me:

1) His intentional blurring of the distinction between earnings and wealth. Inheritance and dividends are the latter; I never took an econ course but even I know that.

2) The equating of Hollywood entertainers with corporate CEOs in a typical "Where's the outrage?" diversion. Unless Sowell is prepared to argue that Celine Dion's roadies constitute a significant sector of the workforce, the distinction seems pretty clear to me.

Since our military is professional it stands to reason that a military coup would be professional and civil. Or something likes that.

jjv said...

Sowell was using hyperbole on the military coup. You can search his writings in vein for any tropism towards Bonapartism. Sheesh.

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