Can One be Anti Union and Egalitarian
Mickey Kaus is neither and Matthew Yglesias says that he is, at least, coherant. I respond
I don't have any idea why Kaus insists on calling himself a liberal (if indeed he still does I haven't kept up with his development over the past decade or so). However, I think it is easy to be anti-union and egalitarian. Even if one rejects unions, there is another path to increased equality -- increased progressivity of taxes. What is wrong with that approach ? Hmm is it politically impossible ? Doesn't seem so, so long as the middle class gets tax cuts, increased progressivity is about as popular a policy as there is (recall 60% wanted to eliminate the FICA ceiling and that is a pure tax increase). I think any politician who stakes out a clear class war soak the rich position will win the White House. Odd that none do.
Would an increase in taxes on the rich have huge economic costs ? Sure doesn't look that way from the cases of the Clinton tax increase, the Bush tax cuts, the relative performance of the economy under Reagan and under Eisenhower and, I could go on, but you (Matt) have done so at some length here already.
So what's the problem ? I think unions are important because they help workers and managers interact as more nearly equals in power. They do promote equality, however, there are feasible highly popular policies which can do much more to reduce inequality.
I don't know why there is not a movement for increased progressivity. I suspect it is because Fred Hiatt would disapprove.