“Politicians have¬† trouble giving up the idea of something for nothing; it’s such a sweet vote catcher. A government can give most people something for nothing by taxing the few people with money. This is how Sweden has gotten into trouble. There are never enough of those people with money. And the people with money are the people with accountants, tax lawyers, and bank accounts in Luxembourg, so they end up not paying their taxes. Or even if they do pay their taxes, like good¬† Swedes, the people with money are also the people who know how to manipulate the system. Therefore, instead of the situation that Samuelson posited in Economics where “modern democracies takes loaves from the wealthy and pass them out to the poor,” we get a situation where loaves are taken from the wealthy and subsidized opera tickets are passed back to them.”

From Eat the Rich by P.J. O’Rourke

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