Maxim: Taxation of billionaires is redistribution . . . from the useless to the necessary.
Effect: Catchy because it takes a common conservative trope and converts it into a progressive truth.
Purpose: To draw attention to the fact that “redistribution” can be a good thing.
Explained: Rutger Bregman in his book Utopia for Realists cites numerous statistics indicating that since the Reagan tax cuts, there was a large shift of college graduates from professions like teaching, science and engineering to careers in banking, wallstreet, and hedge funds. (Ch. 7) He also cites statistics showing that every dollar earned by a banker involves the destruction of $0.60 elsewhere in the economy. In contrast, every dollar earned by a scientist generates $5.00 elsewhere in the economy. Taxes help fund science, teaching, police, engineers, and other makers. Cutting taxes does the opposite.