Wealth Through Theft

The Spanish Government has announced that the cost of riding certain public trains will be cut from half-fare to zero beginning in September. This follows on the heels of Germany selling monthly public transit passes for just nine Euros ($9). The Guardian and CNN are very excited about these changes because, in the view of the conventional Left, this achieves two things: It saves the environment and it saves money.

It saves the environment by forcing people out of their gas-guzzling cars. Of course, the real thing forcing people out of their cars isn’t cheap train tickets, but rather runaway inflation that has made buying and driving the ordinary family sedan a prohibitive luxury. This is the ideal outcome for a globalist elite who believe that people should all travel together in one big collective mass—with just a few cars and planes set aside for the important people running everything, who actually need to go to particular places and be there on time. 

When the Left talks about saving money, what they really mean is that they are going to borrow money in your name with no intention of paying it back. This means they are either stealing from today’s creditors (you) or from tomorrow’s debtors (your kids). One way or another, though, they need that money and they’re going to take it.

That returns us to the vexed question of saving money by making things cost less. Lefist economics is based on two fundamental principles:

1) There is a fixed amount of wealth in the world.

2) Money has inherent value.

Point one—that there is a fixed amount of wealth—explains everything the Left does on a macro scale. They believe because wealth cannot be created (for example by using one’s labor to transform a lump of wood into a chair) the only way to obtain wealth is to steal it. Under the “my fair share of the pie” or “my bite of the apple” philosophy, anyone who has more than the average amount of wealth has come by it undeservingly, and so the morally correct thing is to confiscate that “surplus” wealth and give it to someone who has less than the average. That way, things will even out and everyone will have the same amount of wealth. Until of course someone starts making chairs while his neighbor just sits around waiting for a welfare check.

Point two—that money has inherent value—is even more childish and more insidious. The intellectual toddlers of the economics community have been trying to make this concept work at least since the French Revolution (and probably since before that). A typical problem: Bread costs too much. The leftist solution: Announce that bread now costs less.

By decreeing a maximum price for bread (le maximum) the French Revolutionaries were under the impression they were taking a major step for the common people that their evil king just hadn’t thought of. They were then caught completely off-guard when the bakers stopped baking bread on the flimsy excuse that the ingredients now cost them more than they were receiving from the finished product. It was an amazing, Bastille-Day miracle: the French had managed to make labor remove value.

Even in the most rigorously-controlled, state-planned economies, a unit of currency is only worth as much as someone is willing to pay for it. And even soviet-style governments (such as our own) implicitly acknowledge this when they take action on the direct supply-and-demand principle by increasing the money supply: In their heart of hearts (or the void where such objects would reside) they know that they can’t simply make a dollar worth a certain amount by decree. Added to which is the problem of all these dollars they’ve borrowed from the future with no intent of repaying. The obvious supply-and-demand solution is to create more supply, by simply printing a huge amount of new dollars.

How huge? The U.S. government has printed 80 percent of all dollars in existence today since 2020. They’re trying to conceal the implications by keeping interest rates artificially low. But anyone who has tried to buy a car or gasoline or water or food or clothes or indeed anything at all can see just the beginning of the effects. Inflation isn’t just at 7 percent or 11 percent—the real figure is much, much higher. When this finally balances out, and it may take a year or two, your dollars are going to be worth 20 percent of what they were a few years back, because the government has again confused (I think deliberately) the concepts of money and value. 

We are headed for major economic collapse, and it will happen just as soon as the Republicans get back into office, because that will be the signal the Fed can give up on pretending the economy isn’t dying (it has significantly less trouble raising interest rates when Republicans are in charge). Times are going to be rough, because our government has done a massive damage, an unbelievable amount of stealing and borrowing that we, ultimately, will have to pay for.

The only way out the other end of this total disaster is less government—and I mean dramatically less government. Reduce the size of government by 95 percent, close almost every department, get rid of tax withholding, and reduce the tax rate to what the founding fathers would have found acceptable—which is to say no income tax at all, and some sales taxes to pay for the government’s few necessary functions.

Because wealth is created through labor, creativity, and industry. Why, then, should we tolerate the people who believe only in wealth through theft?

About Dan Gelernter

Dan Gelernter is a columnist for American Greatness living in Connecticut.

Photo: Jeffrey Greenberg/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

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