2/24/2009

When You Punish the Productive, What Happens?

Once upon a time, there was a little red hen. She baked a loaf of bread with flour ground from grain she had planted, watered, and harvested herself because the other animals in the barnyard were unwilling to work to help her. Then when those animals who had refused to help with any of the work wanted a piece of the delicious bread, she said "I'll eat it myself."

The animals banded together and filed a class-action lawsuit against the unjust and selfish conduct of the hen, depriving them of their fair share of bread. Their tearful stories on CNN convinced Congress to pass a law taking one half of all future bread production from the hen to give to those "in need."

Strangely enough, the hen stopped baking bread altogether.

President Obama has declared his intention to raise taxes on businesses and "the rich" to balance the budget. Where his interest in balancing the budget was a week ago when he signed off on more than a trillion dollars in "stimulus" spending that won't stimulate anything (and most of which won't be spent for two years or more) is an open question. But does anybody seriously think that producers will keep producing if it's going into the mouths and pockets of those Mr. Obama deems worthy? I don't.

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