Friday, May 06, 2011

Why Don't We Redistribute GPA's?

Did you see this one? Interview college students who believe in income redistribution of some kind, and ask them if they also think GPA's should be redistributed. If they can't think of a logical argument for doing one and not doing the other, then they're HYPOCRITES! GOTCHA! Yeah, I'm a little underwhelmed by the logic of this argument too. You're not obligated to explain why you have different opinions on two topics that have nothing to do with each other. "Are you ok with people eating pies? Well, how about eating babies? HYPOCRITE!"

The obvious answer, if we really need to do this, is that the entire POINT of a GPA is assessing accomplishment. That's maybe a secondary purpose of income, but the primary purpose of income is to allow one to purchase food, and thus not, you know, DIE.

xpostfactoid gives this argument a lot more thought than it deserves, and comes up with a lot of answers, but this one is, I think, the most relevant, not only to this argument but to just about any argument about economic politics in America:

3. Income redistribution in the U.S. is very moderate. No one who makes a lot of money has cause to complain that the state is depriving him or her of the fruits of labor. And by multiple measures of national well-being, humans thrive best in societies that invest in commonwealth, that is, do their utmost to provide the conditions for a decent life to all and to moderate without eliminating disparities of wealth.

Seriously, does anyone even think of programs like Medicare, Social Security, Unemployment Insurance and Food Stamps as "income redistribution?"


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