New Liberal Idea: Federal Government Would Create A Social Wealth Fund

New Liberal Idea: Federal Government Would Create A Social Wealth Fund

The opinion pages of the NY Times are always a wealth of hardcore leftism, where new ideas are trotted out. We have this one by Matt Gruening, which would transform private wealth into public wealth

What if Everyone Benefitted When Stocks Soared?

The solution is simpler than it seems. There’s a tried and tested way, within the system we have now, of giving everyone a share in the investment returns now hoarded by the wealthy. It’s called a social wealth fund, a pool of investment assets in some ways like the giant index or mutual funds already popular with retirement savings accounts or pension funds, but one owned collectively by society as a whole. One that paid dividends not to the few, or even just to the shrinking middle class lucky enough to have their savings invested, but to everyone.

It may be our best chance to stop a decades-long trend of rising wealth inequality that has only accelerated since the Great Recession. According to new data released by the Federal Reserve, the collapse of the housing bubble and the ensuing financial crisis caused the net worth of virtually all families, rich and poor, to drop sharply between 2007 and 2010. But during the post-2010 economic recovery, the fortunes of the wealthiest grew rapidly while nearly everyone else’s lagged behind.

That’s weird. We were told during the Obama years that the stock market doing well was super awesome, and all thanks to Obama. Now we’re told a great stock market isn’t. Oh, and that income inequality (meaning class envy) got much, much worse during the Obama years. In fact, it’s the worst its been since they started measuring it in 1983.

Here’s how it could work. The federal government would create and run a new investment fund, and issue every adult citizen one share of ownership. The fund would gradually come to own a substantial and diverse portfolio of stocks, bonds and real estate. The investment return that the fund generates would be paid out to each citizen in the form of a universal basic dividend, and the shares would be nontransferable to preserve the institution’s egalitarian purpose.

Yes, because the federal government does a great job in using the People’s Money, taken forcibly, wisely, eh?

The net result of such a system would be to gradually transform private wealth, which is very unevenly distributed, into public wealth that every person in society owns an equal part of. If, over time, the social wealth fund came to own one-third of the country’s wealth…

In other words, this is just another idea to put all the wealth in the hands of Government, which would dole out said money like a parent giving an allowance, all while making citizens even more reliant on Government.

Where would the money come from?

Wouldn’t the enormous wealth that our increasingly productive society is generating, which now flows into just a few pockets, be a fair source? Some of the concrete ways this could happen are through the transfer of existing federal assets like land, buildings and portions of the wireless spectrum into the new fund. Other measures could include increases in taxes on capital that affect mostly the wealthy such as estate, dividend and financial transaction taxes and the creation of a new type of corporate tax that requires companies to directly issue new shares to the social wealth fund on an annual basis and during certain corporate moves such as initial public offerings, mergers and acquisitions.

So, a Robin Hood tax. Typical leftist redistribution of wealth. Another idea is for the Federal Reserve to buy stock for the fund instead of treasury bonds. One has to wonder why Leftists, who are controlled by moneyed people like George Soros, Thom Steyer, Hollywood, etc, are so invested in this whole income inequality thing. And why they’re always looking for ways to tear down successful people in a manner than would make citizens more reliant on government.

Crossed at Pirate’s Cove. Follow me on Twitter @WilliamTeach.

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