by w3woody

Taxes and the Fairness Offensive

Whenever a politician, either conservative or liberal, starts talking about “being fair”, what they’re really talking about is playing favorites, with their “favorite” being whomever they can assert is “morally or ethically superior.”

I’m not sure which is worse: the cynical politician who uses the “fairness” blather to institute machine politics and pay off his cronies (as Obama is doing, true to his Chicago roots), or politicians who truly believe they’re being fair.

But the economy is not “fair.” The economy, as the expression of the collective decision making process of millions of free-thinking individuals with their own wants and needs, collectively may make decisions that seem counter-intuitive: paying teachers less and famous football players more, for example.

But it could be teachers are paid less than what we think is “fair” because while they may help shape and mould the future football player, they do not deserve a percentage of their student’s outcome (and thank goodness for this: what about the teachers of future mass murderers?), and they are more replaceable than that star football player.

(* I believe if we could reform the way teachers are hired, evaluated and fired, using a more free market model, then we would discover the teachers who really are “stars” in the educational system and compensate them accordingly–but that would imply a far wider range of salaries, as well as greater freedom on the part of schools to dismiss poor performers.)