I watched the first hour of Up with Chris Hayes. It was mostly an attack on Republicans using the debate last night as the material to make their case. Reihan Salam was on the panel, and he weakly attempted to present a a different perspective from the basically progressive perspective delivered by Hayes, Rebecca Traister and Phaedra Ellis-Lamkins. Lamkins insisted that Gingrich's recent comments regarding lack of a work ethic among the poor in inner cities were rooted in racism. The Left loves to talk about dog whistles, but their dog whistle claims are actually dog whistles themselves, or more like blaring horns. You can't have a decent debate about poverty when one side is called racist when they offer theories and solutions.
Most of the conversation was ordinary Leftist spin, but Chris Hayes responded to something Romney said which I found interesting. In the debate Romney praised the efforts of entrepreneurs which have helped raise the living standards of Americans across the board. Hayes didn't explain, but he countered Romney by saying he, Hayes, is an egalitarian. I assume, since Hayes is a big supporter of OWS, that Hayes is talking about the modern liberal/progressive deification of democracy as a path to equality. Equality can mean different things to different people, and, because Hayes has never promoted limited government, I take his egalitarianism as a call for government policy to enforce equality. What kind of equality? If Hayes means that government is responsible for ensuring equal treatment under the law, including the wealthy, and that all people should have the same rights, including the poor, then I'm on board.
If Hayes believes it's government's responsibility to remove economic inequalities among people, then I have a serious problem. The Progressive statist agenda to remove economic inequalities is not only morally offensive, it has a counter effect that winds up harming the very people Hayes proposes to help. Government economic interventions in the form of picking winners and losers and redistributing wealth suppresses economic growth and creates a situation in which interventions call for more interventions as unintended consequences are created by the interventions. Obamacare is a prime example of interventions calling for more interventions until all the interventions create economic stagnation and high unemployment. While Hayes will say that economic stagnation and high unemployment are caused by lack of demand, the main problem is uncertainty in the economy. Businesses are not sure what their operating expenses will be when Obamacare and other regulations are in full force, and consumers are uncertain how all the changes will affect their financial situation. Many companies have the cash to innovate, take risks, and offer new products and services, but they will not invest, take the risk and expand unless they are reasonably sure what their operating expenses will be.
In an environment in which small and medium sized businesses fear that government will confiscate their profits to socially engineer economic equality, they will not take risks. The attempt to establish equality of results destroys equality of opportunity. On a moral basis, government doesn't have the right to take money from some and give to others in an attempt to create economic equality. The fact that so many people in America are okay with redistribution of wealth shows how far we've drifted from "fairness". If wealth producers in the private sector choose to give a part of their wealth to people in need, then that's their choice, but government confiscation and redistribution are wrong on so many levels, it's amazing that so few see how wrong it is. The bottom line, though, is that poor people are ultimately worse off through this type of egalitarianism, although it makes wealthy liberals like Hayes feel righteous.