November 27 2012
America: Still the Land of Opportunity—in Spite of What You’ve Been Told
Vicki E. Alger
“There is no other system that has created the most kind of opportunity — the most kind of increases in living standards and jobs — than the American free enterprise system,” according to the Wall Street Journal’s Steve Moore.
But wait! Aren’t the rich getting richer, and the poor getting poorer? Nope—it’s a myth says Moore:
“Americans believe what the media’s been telling them for the last 30 years: the rich don’t pay any taxes, they get all of the loopholes and the people like Warren Buffett and Bill Gates and the Justin Biebers of the world are not paying their fair share,” said Moore. “And what I found just going through the official IRS data is exactly the opposite. We have a highly, highly progressive tax system.”
He noted that the richest one percent pay under 40 percent of the income tax, while the top 10 percent pay 67 percent and the bottom 50 percent only pay about two and a half percent.
Moore denies the rich are getting richer, while the poor get poorer, saying it’s only a myth.
“If you look over the last 35 years going back to the start of the Reagan administration, the middle class in this country has seen about a one third increase in their incomes when you include things like benefits,” Moore said. “The average middle class person today has a higher living standard than the average rich person did 50 years ago.”
Ultimately, says Moore, “just because you’re born rich doesn’t mean you’re going to be rich and just because you’re poor doesn’t mean you’re going to be poor.”