Wealth Redistribution

Anyone else thoroughly unimpressed by this supposedly “devastating” tape of Obama speaking about redistributing the wealth in 2001? Drudge is wetting his pants over it, but this really doesn’t seem like much of an issue. By definition, any tax redistributes wealth, whether it’s from the affluent to the less affluent, from individuals to the government, from the government to the affluent, etc. “Wealth redistribution” doesn’t equate to socialism — it’s a necessary element in the structure of the modern state system. The fact of the matter is that, in the past decade or so, wealth redistribution has been rampant — just in the direction of the government and the less affluent to the affluent. If you think that’s equitable wealth redistribution, fine, but don’t pretend like redistribution only exists when it comes to extending unemployment benefits or erecting a national health care system.

Obama’s point seems to be a much narrower view of the extent to which social change and progressive wealth redistribution is possible through the judicial system — and, as Orin Kerr points out, it’s not entirely clear what Obama concludes.

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~ by Benji on 27 October 2008.

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