Much has been made lately of those whose income is in the top 1 percent, who supposedly don't pay their "fair share" of taxes. They have been denounced as close to common thieves.
But think of the gains that they generate for others. We have rigged our tax policies so that, depending on the year, close to 40 percent of the income tax revenue comes from the 1 percent of the population that controls 20 percent of the wealth.
Close to half the population pays no federal income tax at all. This is a political disaster in the making.
The American economy is currently stagnating for two main reasons. At the top of the system, a relentless program of redistributive taxation undermines incentives for long-term investment and growth.