Saturday, January 28, 2012
On Income Inequality
I was really encouraged to see Brian Gaynor's Herald piece on the doubling of income inequality in New Zealand in the last twenty or so years. I was fascinated to see his lucid explanation of how rocketing salaries and bonuses for the top people have insidiously spread themselves around the global community.
But, like a lot of sermons in which we clergy have castigated the congregation for some failing or other, I suppose, this interpretation left me wondering what I can do about it. I just am left with a feeling of helplessness.
Having lived through a lot of tax changes over half a century, I recall the days when even clergy paid 48c on the top dollars of the stipend. So what about returning to a more progressive tax regime, so that the rich make a greater contribution to the public good?
Brian’s answer is that shareholder vigilance will work better. The problem is, as I see it, those who are the worst victims of income inequality have no voice for change.
They don’t vote at shareholders’ meetings.