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    What Don’t You Understand About Growing The Pie?

    What Don’t You Understand About Growing The Pie?

    The 400 wealthiest people control more wealth than that controlled by bottom economic half the population. Michael Moore said it, and PolitiFact checked it, so it must be true.

    So what?

    There is no limit to wealth in a free-market, capitalist society, unlike a socialist society where government controls the means of production and decides who gets what from the finite pie.

    No one is stopping you from starting and building the next Microsoft, or Google, or Facebook, and joining that list.

    The creation of wealth is very dynamic.  Look at the Forbes 400 list and you will find some old-line families, but they are shrinking in prominence. 

    But look towards the top of that list, and you will find families or individuals that built great businesses which created hundreds of thousands of jobs and lowered the cost of living for hundreds of millions of people (the Waltons, Jeff Bezos of Amazon, Michael Dell), and entrepreneurs who invented or developed the technology which is the foundation of our economy (Jeff Page and Sergey Brin of Google, Bill Gates and Paul Allen of Microsoft, Larry Ellison of Oracle ).

    Interestingly, politics doesn’t control.  You find the Koch brothers and George Soros near the top as well.  So industrialists and currency speculators all have a shot.

    There is nothing holding you back, except your own talents and imagination, and stifling government regulations, taxes and mandates which make it increasingly difficult to grow a business.

    Growing the pie is a concept the Democratic Party doesn’t understand.  Instead, it is focused on slicing the pie we have.  Which is why the Democratic Party and the Michael Moores of the world hold no promise for our future, they dwell on the past.

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    I have tutored over a dozen people whom I work/have worked with on investing. Except for one, the others have been non-white females (more than half single mothers) who had never invested before in their lives.

    I've lent them books on investing, shown them websites and online brokers, spent hours explaining the basics, etc. I'm passionate about this and I give freely of my time (the only thing I ask in return, I tell them, is that they vote Republican). We have to get people invested in America and capitalism.

    If our schools have any time outside teaching the "three Rs," why is personal finance and investing not at the head of the line? A liitle more likely to ensure people end up leading happy lives compared to taking a middle-school class in rock poetry, no?

    I have a question that is a bit off topic, but does involve the collectivist pie. I am a bit confused why the farmers in Wisconsin have joined the protests. I did a little digging and found out the "Tractorcade" was organized by the Wisconsin Farmers Union. They are worried about higher property taxes under Walker's new legislation. Now I get that if the state pays less then the local communities have to pay more. In this scenario wouldn't the farmers (and other taxpayers) want more leverage when deciding the salaries and benefits of the public employees. Wouldn't ending collective bargaining give local taxpayers more power to decide how much of their money is confinscated to pay someone elses salary? Perhaps I am just plain wrong and I will accept that if so. The understanding that I have leads me to believe that the farmers are fighting the wrong people. If high property taxes are their concern (as is the concern of many people on both sides), then they need to be able to sit down at a table in their local community and tell the teachers and other public employees that the tax burden is too much to bear and since they are paying their paycheck they are going to have to make sacrifices. The teachers cannot expect the taxpayers burden to go up up up without even having a seat at the bargaining table. The farmers can't expect the State to be endlessly funded by some fabled "evil" rich guys to relieve their tax burden. Everyone needs a place at the table.

    growing the pie and income inequality have nothing to do with each other. No matter how big the pie is if all of it goes to one person everyone else goes hungry. There's a reason for this and it's called inflation. The bigger the pie the more we have to eat not to be hungry (to step out of the increasingly tortured metaphor the more wealth in the country the more bread costs).

    So yes it does very much matter that we have grotesque levels of income inequality. Now it's true that we'll never have complete parity, it might even be true that complete parity would be undesirable by discouraging endeavor. On the other hand the insane levels of disparity we see now are unhealthy and more to it unsustainable. Those at the top will have to realize that they cannot continue to gobble up a disproportionate amount of taxes or sooner or later they will face a revolution. It will happen if they continue their "let them eat cake" routine.

    I have no sympathy for an elite class with such a poor sense of history (to say nothing of humanity) that they drive the masses to build guillotines.

    So make your choice.

    LukeHandCool- You had me until the Republican thing. What if they're an 'independent'? I agree that students should at least understand compound interest before they take out a student loan and credit card invitations start arriving in the mail.

    Isn't it possible that the entrepreneurial spirit has taken a hit with people's faith in the fundamental fairness of the system? Not everyone is an entrepreneur, of course, but we used to think of this as the American spirit and a kind of birthright.

    But reality and that identity clash when the markets are dominated by massive players with supply chains that cross the globe and have a hand in making the rules. I think the left and the tea party could have a productive partnership here.

    Dems understand the value of a bigger pie. And they certainly support small business. But in the era of the mega-corp, building wealth on the kitchen table isn't as easy as 'see a need and meet it.' Who wants a better mouse trap when the one at Walmart is only 35 cents because it cost them 5 cents to get it on the shelf?

    The tea party faults regulations for undermining their enterprise. This is hard for me to grasp since (stock speculations aside) the rags to riches story of 2011 usually involves selling to a large corporation–be it a biomedical or energy or education company–who have a lock on distribution on any scale. Never mind trying to compete with companies that manufacture off shore. These mega coporations have no loyalty to the United States.

    One thing that would engage more Americans in wealth creation (which will grow a bigger pie than Walmart ever has– given their Chinese products) is enough transparency that consumers know the full of what they're buying. Was it made in the USA? Or just assembled in China? What's the company's human rights record?

    Buying low and selling high just can't work where there are billions of people who will do it cheaper, sell it cheaper. Even chubby Michael Moore (and why his weight matters a whit, I couldn't guess) would start to believe in a bigger, kinder pie if the mega companies were distributing value that was created at home, and without sweat shops and the destruction of other people's lands, that kind of thing. Especially, if the people in his hometown were at full employment.

    Fairness is an important to sustaining our system. Republicans and democrats might disagree on what that is, but it's important that Americans, on the whole, believe the system is fundamentally fair. This has been eroded by a war fought for reasons that weren't transparent, no bid contracts, Halliburton's looting, the partnership between very big business and govt, and outsourcing, outsourcing, outsourcing… at least this has eroded Dems belief that unregulated markets result in free and open competition without barriers to entry for the better mousetrap.

    Is it in the interest of small business that public policy be infinitely influenced by the biggest players?

    Well, just how did the porcine propagandist Moore become a multi-millionaire? Did he inherit all his wealth from somebody or did he "earn" it by selling a pile of BS to fools who are too dimwitted to understand they are being taken advantage of? The man obviously has enough money to keep himself in cheeseburgers for the rest of his life so why doesn't he donate the proceeds from any of his future pork fests to help the people he feels capitalism is leaving behind? Or is that a silly question?

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