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Revenue was an afterthought when the estate tax was originally enacted. The lessons learned from the Gilded Age led to the legislation. Like the founding fathers (who had the foresight to specifically prohibit the granting of titles in the constitution), they feared an American aristocracy. We seemed to have lost sight of that. Paul Ryan would gladly sign on to making the John Galts barons or earls. Ryan and his republican ilk know that enough Americans have been lulled into a stupor by Limbaugh and Fox News to let them get what they really want, the creation of the American aristocracy.

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