Matt Yglesias, co-founder of vox.com, often has some really dumb ideas. But he is occasionally useful. Unlike other far-leftists, he’s sometimes willing to say the quiet part out loud.
While Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was making headlines proposing a 70% top tax rate to pay for her economy killing Green New Deal, Yglesias got into the mix by advocating a 90% tax rate. What makes him so useful is that he included his real motivation.
Responding to criticism of excessive tax rates, Yglesias admitted a 90% tax bracket would not increase revenue for the government, and might even result is less money flowing into the treasury. But that’s OK, because as Yglesias helpfully spells out, the real point of high taxes is not to raise funding but to reduce the number of rich people by punishing the successful.
This is important. He’s not saying high taxes will help the poor in some way; the only benefit is to bring down the wealthy. We would have a poorer country overall, but at least there wouldn’t be so many rich people out there succeeding.
The far-left often couch their ideas in terms of compassion. They don’t hate the rich, they just love the poor. They don’t want to punish success, they just want to help others succeed. I am sure some believe this and are just economically illiterate. Yglesias confirms what many think but won’t say: they do hate the rich and they do want to punish success, even if it hurts those they claim to love. Leftist economics is not about compassion, it’s about jealousy and resentment.