Somewhere along the way, all that changed. Today, the very concept of achievement is de-emphasized and sometimes attacked. Following in the footsteps of Barack Obama, Professor Elizabeth Warren of Harvard has made the downgrading of high achievers the centerpiece of her election campaign against Senator Scott Brown.
To cheering audiences, Professor Warren says, “there is nobody in this country who got rich on his own. Nobody. You build a factory out there, good for you, but I want to be clear. You moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for. You hired workers that the rest of us paid to educate.”
Do the people who cheer this kind of talk bother to stop and think through what she is saying?Demonizing success is especially dishonest at a time when high earners bear the largest share of the tax burden ever.
At a time when a small fraction of high-income taxpayers pay the vast majority of all the taxes collected, it is sheer chutzpah to depict high-income earners as somehow subsidized by “the rest of us,” whether through paying for the building of roads or the educating of the young. Since everybody else uses the roads and the schools, why should high achievers be expected to feel like freeloaders who owe still more to the government, because schools and roads are among the things that facilitate their work? According to Elizabeth Warren, it’s because it is part of an “underlying social contract.And here's the kicker:
Conjuring up some mythical agreement that nobody saw, much less signed, is an old ploy of the Left...Whatever policy [they] happened to favor was magically transformed by rhetoric into a “promise” that American society was supposed to have made — and, implicitly, that American taxpayers should be forced to pay for.