Tag Archives: Friedman


Hillary has just piped up with her opinion that the rich still have too much money: “The rich are not paying their fair share. – Wealthy Americans don’t pay enough taxes.”

In support of her argument that income tax rates should be increased on the rich, Hillary cites Brazil, “Brazil has the highest tax-to-GDP rate in the Western Hemisphere and guess what — they’re growing like crazy.” One should never trust a Clinton. Income taxes are lower in Brazil, not higher. The maximum income tax rate in Brazil is 27.5%. In the U.S. it is 35% and going higher when the Bush tax cuts expire.

Random Thots readers will be quick to note that Mrs. C. quoted the “tax to GDP rate”, not an income tax rate. She knows very well that that distinction will be lost among the vast audience of her remark. Those quick enough to catch it will also be astute enough to know it signifies a low GDP, not a high tax rate. Furthermore, in no way is it a measure of relative tax on the wealthy.

There is a faction in this country that longs for America to be more like some other country. Hillary and Gore like Brazil. Tom Friedman at the New York Times has lamented time and again that we should be more like China. The whole Democratic Party seems to prefer we become more like Europe. Perhaps we should set aside a state like Vermont or Minnesota and set up a government with finances like that of Greece, health care like that of England, human rights like China and crime like Brazil then offer it as a refuge for those with such longings.

Bob B

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Thomas Friedman has penned an article for the New York Times declaring The Fat Lady Has Sung. Friedman’s fat lady is the bounty provided by the generations preceding us. But the glory days are over. “We are eating through the prosperity that was bequeathed to us like hungry locusts.”

He sees the problem and offers a solution – more government spending and higher taxes. Of course he didn’t say “more government spending”, but he advocated for deployment of Obama’s programs as part of the solution. And what is that if not more government spending? Einstein’s definition of idiocy immediately comes to mind. But Friedman is a very intelligent man. If idiocy is not the answer, then how is it that repeating the cause of the problem comes to be seen as the solution?

If you have read A Conflict of Visions you know the answer. It lies in an uwavering belief in the superiority of conceptual planning over the empirical evidence of experience. Reagan came close when he simply said “Government is not the solution. Government is the problem.”

It is clear that Friedman sees government to be the solution. I wonder what he sees as the cause.

Bob B

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