Seth Udinski, FISM News
Democratic legislators are teaming up with an organization of wealthy bureaucrats called Patriot Millionaires to push for higher taxes on the upper class, specifically in the form of a 90% tax on income higher than $100 million in a move dubbed “Tax the Rich.”
This initiative would not only propose a massive tax on the extremely wealthy but also legislation on the moderately wealthy. Patriot Millionaires is calling for taxation on “all income over $1 million the same regardless of how it is generated, including capital gains income and inheritance income.”
The team-up is not limited to politicians. One of the more prominent members of this initiative is Abigail Disney, granddaughter of Roy Disney, who played a vital role in the foundation of his younger brother Walt’s media empire in the early 20th century.
The younger Disney alleged,
My grandfather paid a 90% marginal tax rate on his income, and he amassed plenty of wealth in the process. That means rates of up to 90% on incomes over $100 million.
In yesterday’s report on this initiative, The Post Millennial said that many opponents of “Tax the Rich” believe that those who are wealthy should put their money where their mouth is and pay higher taxes of their own accord, without calling for legislation that would force others to do so.
Author’s Biblical Analysis
There is much for Christians to consider in this report. While the Bible does not mandate tax laws or governmental systems, it does give us principles that we can use to help inform our opinions on these matters.
First, it would be wise to use the common sense and discernment God has given to those who ask for it (James 1:5).
I believe common sense leads one to the conclusion that bills like this are foolish and counterintuitive. In order for a society to flourish, it is necessary for there to be some who are wealthy. Why? It is simple: The wealthy have the resources to pay salaries, health benefits, and business expenses.
Those who have much, who have also been blessed with the ability to manage people and run a business, can create jobs and livelihoods so that those with less can work hard, earn an income, and begin to build their own wealth little by little (Proverbs 13:11). After years of hard work and amassed wealth, those who had originally benefited from working under the wealthy can then become wealthy themselves, and then they pay the salaries for a new generation of workers.
But when tax burdens such as this are levied against the rich, what happens?
Wealthy businessmen now have to cut paychecks or even lay off their employees, not because of the quality of those employees but simply because they cannot afford to keep them. They cannot hire new workers, because they still have business expenses to meet. But if they cannot hire new workers, their business may then suffer due to lack of manpower, and the day may come when they are forced to close their doors altogether.
Tax burdens such as this very often keep the poor impoverished, and they also put the rich in danger of losing their wealth.
It is wise for us to consider all the variables when we see initiatives that, on the surface, may look appealing and will definitely fool many into thinking it is a good idea.
Furthermore, we are reminded in this report of the necessity of abstaining from hypocrisy.
Because we are sinners, we have the tendency to point out the sin in others while effectively ignoring our own. So often, we are like David who, when confronted with the allegorical tale of the rich man who stole the poor man’s lamb, pointed the finger and called for justice, not realizing that it was he who was guilty (2 Samuel 12).
Those who are calling for this tax on the rich, both politicians and business elites, are also rich. I cannot help but wonder what their response would be if they were asked to lead by example and part ways with the money in their own pockets.
Whatever that response may be, let us always remember to let our deeds match our creed. Let us not be like the Pharisees in Jesus’ day, who pointed out the sins in others, all the while committing the same sins in their own hearts.
Instead, let us walk with integrity, as those whose hearts have been purified by the blood of Jesus Christ.
Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which indeed appear beautiful outwardly, but inside are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness. Even so you also outwardly appear righteous to men, but inside you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness. – Matthew 23:27-28