Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Why solving inequality is not the problem

Idiot/Savant has one of his typical shrill rants on this post about New Zealand's inequality "problem":
Congratulations! New Zealand is again a world leader! But not in anything we want to be. Our gap between rich and poor widened more than in any other developed country in the past twenty years.
So what.

We are all unequal in some way or another. Some are taller than others. Some are smarter than others. Some see better; others play Golf better etc. We don't try to reduce these inequalities, and neither should we try because inequality is inherent. Everyone is unequal to everyone else, in some way or another.

Wealth inequality is not an issue either. If the richest person in the country was worth $100million, and the poorest person "just" $10million (with prices as they are today) would we bother trying to reduce this inequality? Would we be concerned about it? Of course not.

But this would be an issue if the $10million dollar woman could not get by because things were too expensive for her; in other words if the cost of living was too much for her to live on $10million.

That is why inflation is the enemy of the poor.

The policy prescriptions to inflation are many, but they centre on making people wealthier, not trying to make things cheaper through regulation.  
Labour's policies of subsidies for everyone, GST off fresh fruit and vegetables, interest free student loans etc are completely nuts and do nothing to make people wealthier. 

And that must be our focus: Making people wealthier so they can afford to live in New Zealand.

And we do that largely through education and upskilling so that we have a highly educated country with the resultant high-paying jobs.


Anonymous said...

Socialism's goal of equality can only ever be achieved when EVERYONE has NOTHING.

Bogusnews said...

Did he also point out that in half of the last 20 years Labour was in power? Their state interventionalist approach was a total disaster. Maybe it's time for another look at this.

Anonymous said...

Not sure where I obtained this link to an excellent article entitled mind the gap, but it is always a good read.


malcom said...

Comparing inequalities based on innate traits such as hair colour, height or IQ with human-caused income inequalities is either dishonest or just plain stupid. Moreover, it has been amply proven that greater income inequalities lead to greater social unrest and less democratic governance (as those at the top try to stave off claims from the majority at the bottom).

In effect, you have revealed yourself as an ignorant authoritarian apologist with a disdain for democracy and less fortunate others. Can you spell T-O-S-S-E-R?

Anonymous said...

I can spell that word. It is spelt: M A L C O L M.