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A little enlightenment about income equality


In the Nov. 21 issue of New Times, Phillip Mordaunt asked for someone to define what "income inequality" means while claiming that attaining income equality will never work ("Please define your terms"). I don't disagree with that second point, but it fails to address the point made by the vast majority of those who are arguing against increasing income inequality. I'll give Mr. Mordaunt the benefit of the doubt and assume that he just absorbed this talking point from some right-wing political propagandist and didn't actually listen to the points as made by those they oppose.

Here is the basic outline for his enlightenment. There is a problem with an increasing gap between the incomes of the wealthiest people (both in this country and in many others) and the vast majority of the rest of us. This is a threat to social stability. Few, if any, people are claiming that there is not a basis for differences in income between people based upon their abilities. They are saying that, for the past couple of decades, the rich are benefiting disproportionately—that their "abilities" are being rewarded far more generously than others.

This is a systemic problem and is due to the fact that we have increasingly moved toward an oligarchy—a government run by and favoring those who contribute the most to those who can afford to fund their campaigns. They then give the politicians high-paying jobs when they leave office—often as lobbyists to sway the votes of their replacements. While I would argue that this is more common in the GOP (at the national level), both parties do it, and those who do seem to think they can continue getting away with it indefinitely. That is what needs to change.

Ron Holt

Pismo Beach

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