The Death of Opportunity?

Michael Medved

10/23/2012 6:08:44 PM - Michael Medved

The Governor of New York alarmed his audience by announcing the death of opportunity in America. “Equality of opportunity as we have known it no longer exists,” he said. “We are steering a course toward economic oligarchy, if we are not there already.”  

Grim news, but the New York governor pronouncing those words was Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1932 - at a time when the top tax rate was 63%, nearly double the rate today.

Alarmists have always mourned the end of mobility, and expressed foolish nostalgia for imaginary by-gone eras of brighter opportunity. Costly government programs and punishing taxes on the wealthy do nothing to promote true equality—or else the epic spending of the Obama administration and crushing taxes of the 1930’s would have leveled the playing field, rather than contributing to economic stagnation and misery.