Robin Hood vs. the Occupiers


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The ostensible intent of the anti-”greed” mob may be to reduce volatility in the market by punishing rapacious “banksters.” But the ultimate outcome would be less economic growth, bigger government and more punitive costs imposed on the decidedly non-rich. A European Union commission report on the impact of such a tax shows that it would reduce GDP by 0.5 percent. U.S. economist Kenneth Rogoff explained further in a recent analysis that “the declining volume of trades would shrink the tax base precipitously. As a result, the ultimate revenue gains are likely to prove disappointing, as Sweden discovered when it attempted to tax financial transactions two decades ago.”

The Association for Financial Markets in Europe found that 60 percent of trading volume in Sweden escaped to London after Sweden temporarily raised equity tax rates in the 1980s, and that the country experienced an 85 percent drop in bond trading volume, according to Financial News. The outcome was not simply less volatile trading. It was less trading, period.

The demon millionaires and billionaires whom the Occupiers seek to punish would not be the only ones to bear the costs. Over time, the burden of the Robin Hood tax would shift. Rogoff observed: “Higher transactions taxes increase the cost of capital, ultimately lowering investment. With a lower capital stock, output would trend downward, reducing government revenues and substantially offsetting the direct gain from the tax. In the long run, wages would fall, and ordinary workers would end up bearing a significant share of the cost.”

The original Robin Hood tales of the Middle Ages celebrated a renegade who rose up against property rights violations and taxation abuses. His archenemies were not private traders or bankers, but the local government tax collector, the Sheriff of Nottingham and the power-grabbing ruler, Prince John. Robin Hood, in other words, was far more tea party than flea party.

In any case, if the Occupiers insist on celebrating outright theft from the haves in the name of the have-nots, perhaps they should stop complaining about the pickpockets and looters infesting their camps. Live by “social justice” nursery rhymes. Die by “social justice” crimes.

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  • StephenD

    Good job once again Ms. Malkin. I expect nothing less.
    I would offer that these dolts suffer from a corruption of identity. That is to say in their attempt to have one voice they willingly loose their own. The real question is who is putting the words in their mouths.
    They have become the "useful idiots" as if that were the goal. Lenin would be laughing out loud at them all while they did his bidding.

  • Questions

    OWS is much like the ongoing Lower Manhattan's Tompkins Square Park crisis that plagued New York City during 1988-93. Political squatters have a way of attracting the worst of the lumpenproletariat to their environment.

  • Amused

    LOL…these people really bother you eh Michelle ? In fact they bother alot of the denizons of this blog …..good ….suck it up .!
    They aint hurting anyone , they're not threatening anyone , and as any comparison to the teabaggers ?
    Way more class .
    Yea "greed is good " says mr.sod , spoken like a tru SCHMUCK ! LOL….may the fleabaggers eat a hole in your gut .
    I like'em , migh even send' em some money …I like the idea of AMERICANS EXERCISING THEIR FIRST AMENDMENT RIGHTS…without accusing the other half of the country of being traitors , touting phony patriotism and spewing hate .
    Take an aspirin Michelle , these people aint going away any time soon …and they can vote too .

    • StephenD

      I have a problem with the concept and its implementation. "Occupy?" As in 'Take Control?' There are existing means of redress for grievances. We are not under the thumb of a monarch where we MUST revolt to change the rule. There is NO EXCUSE for your kind to sh*t on a cruiser or piss in the streets. There is no excuse for storming the lobby of a local bank or blocking the bridge which prevents WORKING PEOPLE from getting to work.
      You attempt to compare these useful idiots with the Tea Party is beyond the pale. Do you think if you say the words it will make it true? All anyone need do is look at them! See their behavior. Listen to their demands. There is no comparison. The Tea Party got the word out that we ALL are Taxed Enough Already. Your 'crew' wants other peoples stuff. Period….and you say they have class. LOL

  • Amused

    One of the reasons that the extremes of left and right touch—think of Anders Breivik plagiarizing the Unabomber manifesto, or those far-leftists marching under the banner “we are all Hezbollah now”—is that they have a shared commitment to conspiratorialism.
    Talking to experts in the British Muslim community, I was repeatedly told that we had not taken proper measure of the ubiquity and power of conspiratorial modes of thought, and so we had failed to see how stony is the ground upon which many counter-radicalization communications fall. Tarique Ghaffur, the assistant commissioner to the Metropolitan Police, has warned that “among young Muslims there is anger and a feeling of injustice, but there are also elements of denial: they have their own myths, and through the Internet it leads to a huge industry of conspiracy theories.”

  • Amused

    Dean Godson, head of the think tank Policy Exchange, was told by the chief constable of West Yorkshire that “an appreciable number of radicalized young Muslim men in Leeds believed that the London bombings were invented by the Jewish-dominated media.” Indeed, a Pew Research Center poll in 2006 found that 25 percent of British Muslims agreed with the statement “the British government was involved in some way” with the 7/7 attacks.

    Conspiricism is a mode of thinking, not just this or that thought. Cognitive totalism is defined by the social psychologist David Mandel as “an excessive tendency to think in ‘black-or-white’, ‘all-or-nothing’, ‘fallen state or utopia’ terms.” Conspiracy theories “provide causal structures that allow simple, monocausal attributions to a particular scapegoat to appear plausible,” says Mandel. Each extremism provides its own specific monocausal attribution, of course; a paranoid account of the “threat” that is immune to criticism and which Ayaan Hirsi Ali points out also “appeas[es] the perpetrators conscience.”

  • Amused

    So: why is conspiratorialism rife?

    There is a synergy between three factors. First, the 1960s brought (along with much good) a prohibition on “judgement,” a skepticism about “truth,” and a commitment to relativist modes of thought. Some of the most influential social theories of the new left—Herbert Marcuse’s notion of “repressive tolerance” springs to mind—were little more than sophisticated conspiracy theories. It was not such a long journey from depicting liberal democracy as a meaningless fraud, a mere ideological camouflage for a totalitarian West, to full-blown conspiracism…

    Anyone here recognize this mentality ? LOL….it defines most of you , ESPECIALLY YOU MICHELLE …..lol….notice the similarities of the thought process , between you and the jihadis ? lol….probably not .

  • Amused

    BTW, thew above , was from an article read recently on "consiracy theories " , used as a matter of routine by the Right AND Left …….and of course muslims .

    • Wideband

      You ought to call yourself amazing. Amazingly, not only did you fail to adress the points of the article you hoped to rebut (I think), you failed to make any sense at all.

  • Amused

    Apparently that band aint wide enough pal , it's choking off circulation to your brain . Malkin makers her living on conspiracy theories , and makes most of them up herself . This latest juvenile attempt is part and parcel of what she's all about , but more so the sycophants that suck it up . YOU missed the point because you've got your head up your arse .