Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, and the rest of the Democratic field have made their political strategy painfully obvious going into 2020 – make everyone hate billionaires. Instead of unifying through constructive ideals, the radicals of the Democratic Party have made it their mission to stoke the flames of class warfare.
Greed is a nasty sentiment. Republicans are calling out Democrats as being fueled by greed in their quest to confiscate and distribute wealth from the top 1% while Democrats believe greed is how the 1% garnered their wealth in the first place. Pitting the 1% against the 99%, the rich versus the poor, and painting yet another picture of the oppressed versus the oppressor has become a common theme among the popular faces of the Democratic Party. Any claim of unity is null as the left simultaneously advocates for the financial obliteration of those that do not fit into their narrow box of socialist progressivism.
Two things can be true at once – the people advocating for the downfall of billionaires do so out of greed and envy, and billionaires can be greedy. The difference is the result of the greed and the context from which the greed stems.
When billionaires are greedy, it can drive ambition and success that benefits not only themselves but those participating in the market. Billionaires take on an enormous amount of risk, which fits the reward. They provide others with a multitude of jobs whether it’s from innovating, building, investing, or managing. Yes, some are greedy and some aren’t. It entirely depends on the individual. The label of “billionaire” doesn’t constitute greed. However, greedy or not, the fact remains that affluence requires participating in the voluntary transactions of a free market and creates livelihoods for the average American.
The greed and envy displayed when calling for the confiscation of wealth from the most well-off among us has been deceptively sold as virtue. Democratic politicians are attempting to paint a picture of corruption, immorality, and divisiveness when it comes to earning money and success. In great irony, the ring leaders of the class warfare movement, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, are among the elite and wealthy. Except they’re the kind of elite that gets paid off of the tax dollar dime rather than mutually benefiting transactions that creates economic advancement for the working people. I can’t help but smile irreverently as the man who was kicked out of a commune in the 60’s for being too useless condemns self-made billionaires for not contributing their “fair share.” When the top 1% pays more in taxes than the bottom 90% combined while also giving the most in charity – the top 1.4% is responsible for 86% of charitable donations – we are beyond talking “fair share.”
The type of greed portrayed by the Sanders and Warrens of the world does not produce the wide benefiting results of the greedy billionaire. Scathing jealousy of someone else’s property and fortune has detrimental consequences of one’s own productivity and perspective. If you believe Jeff Bezos or Bill Gates got to where they are by stealing from the reluctant lower and middle classes then the idea of the American dream is dead. The only way to reconcile the broken system is to hand over all output to the federal government where all monetary gain is distributed. You therefore must establish a system in which billionaires don’t exist because class doesn’t exist. There will be only one class; a rationed one.
The context of the greed also matters. Obviously, greedy motives don’t always result in positive action. Immoral or unlawful means for unprecedented levels of monetary gain does happen, but more often than not it drastically fails. The con artist billionaire that “stole” his way to the top is an extreme outlier. Name one billionaire (who hasn’t been imprisoned or is in prison) that completely ignored consenting transactions, defied the rules of the free market, stole existing wealth from the pockets of the working class, and yet rose to wealth and prominence. Bernie Sanders would list them all. An honest person probably couldn’t come up with a name.
No man that earns his wealth from rigging or conning the system gets support from the typical Republican or Democrat. Illegal activity is illegal activity. There’s a reason society at large views such actions as immoral. However, a billionaire’s greed itself, is an individual’s emotion. The greed of an individual does not mean the class of which they belong to is greedy, it means the individual himself suffers a character flaw.
A greedy billionaire is a jerk. A greedy Democrat is an authoritarian. While greed of a billionaire is a character trait subject to the laws and whims of a free market society, the greed of a Democrat is doctrinal. It is not merely a character trait but the building block of an ideology. An ideology that, paired with power from public office, creates policy that affects you and me. It is the root of why Democrats like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez state nonsense like “a system that allows billionaires to exist” is immoral.
We are fortunate enough to live in a nation where you are the owner of your labor, where consenting transactions are the bedrock of a free market system, and where the wealthier you are the more you’re contributing to the livelihoods of others. Greed and envy are a self-induced poison that has little to do with the subject of envy and everything to do with the conveyor. The war on the wealthy says a lot more about the Democrats than it does about those “greedy” billionaires.