Prominent libertarian thinkers shred common myths about wealth & income inequality

On tonight’s Glenn Beck Program, Glenn was joined by Yaron Brook, the executive director of the Ayn Rand Center for Individual Rights, Michael Cox, former senior vice president of the of the Federal Reserve bank of Dallas, and George Selgin, professor of economics at the University of Georgia, to offer the libertarian perspective on income inequality and wealth in the United States.

The conversation first centered around the idea of success and what makes an individual successful. While the left would like you to believe ‘you didn’t build that’ so, therefore, it is entirely acceptable to redistribute the wealth, the truth is people should be able to take credit and reap the rewards of what they have done.

“The truth is: If you look at almost all successful people in this country, from the time they were young they played with the right kids, studied in school, make good grades, get a job, get a lot of education, be productive at work everyday, save their money, start a business, hire people, invest – they made good choices,” Michael said. “If you don’t [do those things], I would hope you are not able to be as successful as the people that do.”

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Playing devil’s advocate, Glenn questioned the potential dangers of income inequality, in which a group of people amass so much wealth they continue to have influence from beyond the grave. Yaron, Michael, and George agreed, however, that the capitalist system is the only economic system in the world that has prevented the wealthiest from having complete, unchecked control. Look no further than the former Soviet Union, communist Cuba, or North Korea as examples of countries in which the wealthy enjoy autonomous control.

As Yaron explained, we need to make sure our children understand how wealth is created. In a free society, wealth is not gained off the backs of the poor, but rather wealth is earned through hard work.

“People don’t know how wealth is created, what it means to create wealth. We still have this mentality of a zero-sum world, in which some people make money, therefore, it is taken from others,” Yaron said. “No, the reason they have so much wealth is because they created so much wealth… Put aside cronyism – under the assumption of true freedom – and the fact is half the population in the world has not created any wealth.”

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  • Anonymous

    On a world made of gold a glass of water would be considered priceless.

    At the end, both are worth nothing.

  • Bonnie Somer

    the way you create income whatever equality u want is thru making money CAPTIALISM less taxes less corp taxes less regulation and less GOVT then when people are receiving a payck not an unemployment ck which is slavery to the fed govt and being pd not to work then you have people making a living and no one will ever make exactly what someone else makes i for one will not have the salary of a football player but i have a job and a brain and can make money the de blasios, clintons and the like ALL HAVE MUCH MONEY THEY ARE NOT GIVING IT UP Y B/C MONEY IS GREAT

  • MoneySlinger

    “Wealth” is created, when the time and energy (which is finite) is “spent” or “exchanged” to create something, which produces a “positive” economic balance, meaning, there is a “savings” of time and energy, on the other side of that creation, through the utilization of that creation. It is the law of physics, and more precisely — the law of relativity…and has nothing to do with “belief” in one system that is better than another.

    I hope someday Glenn you get into the science of wealth and re-creation and beyond justifying your positions with “belief”. If all there is is belief, then all arguments are equal. Please consider defending your position with science and demonstration. It can then not be argued.

  • wentworthcheswell

    For the “average” person, if you are not willing to work hard for wealth, work two or more jobs for wealth, work more than 120 hours a week for wealth, work seven days a week for wealth, work ten times harder as the hardest working person for wealth, sacrifice everything else in your life for wealth, fun, friends, partying, family, until you reach your goal, you never will! You have to be willing to go that extra “hard work” mile and anybody who gets there knows what sacrifice is and then is made out to be somebody who should be targeted by the “LEFT” as a person who took it from somebody else….Question….when they were working hard, what “extra” time did they have to take it from somebody else…I think the LEFT has the hard working American who makes it rich mixed up with the GOVERNMENT who takes it from the hard working rich!….is critical thinking anywhere in the leftist progressive mantra playbook? Jeopardy Answer….What is NO, Alex…….Are they all just a bunch of non-thinking, programmed idiots? Jeopardy Answer….What is YES, Alex! The Democrat party should have drones….oh wait, they already do……back in your tents drones until we need to deploy you, then back in your tents until the next election, and you wonder why nothing ever changes!

  • Sea Rock

    … “thinkers shred common myths about wealth & income inequality” …

    Milton Friedman and Phil Donahue On Socialism v. Capitalism
    As posted at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MQ0-cDKMS5M

    “Milton Friedman Speaks” – Myths That Conceal Reality
    As posted at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xNc-xhH8kkk

    Milton Friedman on Donahue 1979 (Full Segment)
    As posted at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IYNSrQLtjKI&list=WL2ECF71A067C1B15A

    The Theory of Moral Sentiments by Adam Smith (Author)
    ISBN-10: 1420938428 ISBN-13: 978-1420938425

    The Road to Serfdom: Text and Documents–The Definitive Edition (The Collected Works of F. A. Hayek, Volume 2) by F. A. Hayek (Author) , Bruce Caldwell (Editor, Introduction, Foreword) ISBN-10: 0226320553 ISBN-13: 978-0226320557

    … just to name a few …

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V8FvmesaxXg Sam Fisher

    The only reason why liberals push this is because they can make the numbers sound bad but when you point out to these same liberals the countries like Egypt Cuba and any other poor country on this earth has a low income inequality they claim that does not count. Why not it is want you liberals want us to be all poor.

  • Anonymous

    We need to define what wealth is. It is NOT the same to all people. Wealth of money is just one aspect. Please tell me how many of the wealthiest people or businesses got there by their own hard work. Let’s look at the Catholic Church, one of the wealthiest congregations in the world. How did they amass that wealth, other than from the followers and mostly poor people? Look at your own government, made up of wealthy bench-warmers, who amass that wealth on the average taxpayer slave. No, the real rich guys get all the loopholes to avoid paying their due share. Look how many billions are given to wealthy corporations as subsidies. Who pays for all this nonsense? Wealth can also mean peace in one’s heart and that is the wealthiest person on earth.

  • Anonymous

    After reading the comments here there one thing I see missing.That one can do all the hard work to get rich but there is one more thing one has to have and that is savvy.One must know what their doing and are able to exame all angles to make it work along with the gut feeling that it will work.With out that you will just be chasing your “tail”

  • James Mitchell

    Oh sure — put cronyism to the side — let’s not talk about that one.

  • Anonymous

    Apparently even Elmer Fudd can get rich …

  • Klasko

    Thank you, Glen for being the first ne to use the word “covet.” Until we as a nation get back to living by God’s rules for basic decency – the 10 commandments. And turn away from our wicked ways, and turn back to God, no amount of political effort to reign in the Socialist Leftist evil upon us will ever work. The Socialist Left cultivates envy, and class warfare which is rooted in greed and covetousness. They are trying to make us want what our neighbors have and begrudge his even having it. until we as a nation get back to God (the Judeo-Christian od upon whom this nation was founded), we are lost. “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not cove your neighbor’s wife or his male servant or his female servant or his ox or his donkey or anything that belongs to your neighbor.” Exodus 20:17

  • Anonymous

    If you think that a glass of water is worth nothing try going without it for a week

  • Anonymous

    If one can go for a week then one is not at the end.

  • Anonymous

    Obama is hurting the economy. Here, for example, we clearly see that debt is increasing far faster on Hussein Obama’s watch than economic growth: http://www.weeklystandard.com/sites/all/files/images/image001-1_0.png

  • Anonymous

    The vast majority of the wealthy made it through hard work. Did you know that among the top 1% of the wealthiest Americans, only 1 out of 7 obtained their wealth through inheritance? The other 6 were self-made. That means that Obama’s (and yours) mantra of “You didn’t build that,” is wrong roughly 86% of the time. Did you know that out of the self-made, only 1 out of 4 of them obtained that money through the stock market? So that means that 75% of self-made wealth is done through speculation. Did you know that it’s none of your business what anyone at anytime does with their money? That means that every time you say that someone wealthier than you should pay their own “fair share” of their wealth in the form of taxes, you are displaying your own inability to mind your own fucking business.