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Author: Goofyhoofy Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Top Recommended Fools Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 35363  
Subject: Re: Folks are worried about retirement, etc. Date: 10/26/2008 7:39 PM
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And another important question - Does government redistribution really help the poor? One good way to determine this is to look to societies where government redistribution was done for a period of time and see if those people ended up poorer or richer.

OK, I'll bite.

In the 19th century we had a society with severe class distinctions, a superwealthy aristocracy, the Gilded Age, and an extremely large underclass who had little economic freedom or ability to change their station in life.

In the 20th century, we had a society with a broad middle class, greater wealth for nearly everyone - including the rich - and a greater ability for people to rise based on merit thanks to things like universal education, equal rights, a stronger judiciary, and more, all paid for by taxes applied more broadly, and progressively against income.

I guess it appears to me that the system in use in the 20th century, progressive taxation, worked far better for far more people than did the regressive system used in the 19th century.

Of course I have only actual history to rely on, while you likely have some political opinion which contradicts it.
 
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