Let’s Stop the Wealth Hoarders
Joe Brewer

This article is full of enticing metaphors, but no evidence for what you say, no case studies. And no solutions. What are you wanting to do: steal money from wealthy people? Are you one of those who thinks we can solve the world’s problems by taxing the 1%?

And who is in charge of this gigantic redistribution you want? The government? It is the least efficient at redistributing resources to make poor people better off. If that weren’t true, the numbers of poor in the US would have plummeted over the last 50 years as government programs to help them keep proliferating.

And consider our two leading presidential candidates. Both Clinton and Trump are perfect examples of the kind of person you deplore. What kind of leadership could either provide to better the lot of those near the bottom?

What we really want is to entice wealthy people to invest in entrepreneurialism and innovation in ventures that will create good jobs, build needed skills, draw more people into the workforce, boost economic growth, build export markets, create individual wealth.

Could the government devise policies that would motivate such behavior? Of course. Our leaders and legislators could sit down and ask, “What taxation policy would motivate wealthy individuals, foundations, and corporations to invest in innovative, job creating, wealth generating ventures in the United States?”

Also, “What tax rates and tax policies would entice wealthy people to bring their money home and invest it here rather than hide it in offshore tax havens?”

But it seems like they’ve done just the opposite. Our leaders must have asked, “What policies could we adopt to make companies offshore their manufacturing, send jobs overseas, keep their profits in other countries, and replace more workers with automation?”

Apple is a perfect example of this. We currently have the spectacle of three taxing authorities squabbling over how to extract more cash from it: the US, the EU, and Ireland. Why does our government retain policies that make prudent companies stash their profits overseas, where others can go after it?

I’m an Apple stockholder. As Apple thrives, so do I. As I thrive, so do the small companies I advise. As they thrive, they create good jobs for lots of people — many of them unskilled. As these folks thrive, so do we all.

This is the path to what you say you want. If you focus on the wealthy “hoarders” as you call them, you’re looking in the wrong direction. You’re seeing only a sliver of the problem. And that is not strategic systems thinking, no matter what you call yourself.

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