History has shown this to be a bad idea. The concept is fine, provide for those that have less than others. It's charity. And it works as long as it's done freely and privately. The problem is that it is impossible to draw lines that will be effective in a government mandated charity system.
First, while government can do things for us, they NEVER do ANYTHING efficiently or fairly, ever.
Second it removes the drive to better oneself. When government forces you to yield part, or all, of your pay, and they decide how it is to be distributed, while others without money can collect from government, why work? If I work a second job for extra money only to have the government take it away there's no incentive to have that job. Sorry, but brain surgery is worth more than rolling pizza dough. That's just the way it goes. Being a surgeon is a tough job, endless schooling, stress, people's lives at stake, special skills, it should pay more. When it doesn't there's no point in becoming a surgeon.
So to insure that society has the services it requires government then forces people to perform these more advanced tasks without adequate compensation.
And who decides what standard of living we are entitled to? If we have 100 percent redistribution of wealth for example, where do we draw a line between needs and wants? If government is to provide for those that cannot provide for themselves what exactly are they entitled to? Running water, electricity, healthy food, cable TV, an iPod?
The "rich" represent the most money donated to charity, the most businesses where the rest of us find employment. If government forces them to yield their earnings there is no advantage in running a business or hiring employees.
Then we have to define "rich." Most of the time this is based on a person's income. Here this can be most disastrous. We all have different standard of living goals. Suppose a person with the income label as rich has a high cost of living. They have an expensive house or live in an expensive part of the Country or have kids in expensive schools, etc. Are they to be penalized for being rich? Some people we consider rich are very charitable. Are they to be lumped in? If we consider net income after taxes and living expenses versus gross income many of those 'rich' may not be so. But they could be forced to reduce their standard of living because government declares so.
It has failed everywhere it's been tested. The current welfare system already shows these causes and effects to be true. Moving to more redistribution of wealth will lead to increased unemployment, outsourcing, companies leaving the Country, and poverty.
In a classless society, all are poor.
Taxation can run at a level of equilibrium. People are generally willing to pay some taxes in exchange for the services government provides. We are well above that line. Increase taxes, on anyone, rich, middle, poor, it doesn't matter, takes more money out of circulation and places it with the government.
Remember companies don't pay taxes. Electricity, labor, raw materials, office supplies, building maintenance, and so on are all costs of operating a business. Taxation is no different. Those costs are ALL passed on to the consumer. Raising taxes on a business will only raise the price of their product or service, prompt them to reduce employees, more outsourcing, closing down, or leaving the Country.
The best way to handle this is to drastically decrease government spending, thereby reducing taxation and debt, which reduces the cost of living for all people. When money goes further the poor are no longer as poor and the rich have more money to spend which means more jobs and more money in circulation, also helping the poor.
It's worth noting that this is not likely to become reality any time soon. While Obama and many of is cohorts in Congress support the idea there is no specific plan to implement any such process.
Answered By: E. F. Hutton - 11/9/2008