Prager Propaganda; The Progressive Income Tax: A Tale of Three Brothers

I Wanted to make a video discussing Prager University specifically a video that they put out Titled the income-tax a tale of three brothers. Let’s know that Prager University is funded by Dan and Farris Wilkes These are two of the richest individuals in America. They made their money through fracking these videos as well as other think tanks are excellent examples of class conflict in Which some of the richest individuals in America often times billionaires they try to convince the masses? certain ideas They try to manipulate the voting of the masses so that they will vote for the interest of the billionaire’s This video is an excellent example. It’s extremely misleading. Let’s watch the video and then I’ll break it down throughout points Once upon a time there were three brothers triplets named Tom, Dick and Harry class They were raised in the same home with the same parents Had the same I cute same skills and same opportunities each was married and had two children I want to highlight right there that they claimed that the three brothers had the same Opportunity they go on to basically argue that the brothers represent Americans today Let’s first of all recognized that not all Americans have the same opportunity some are born into very wealthy families some inherit a lot of money all others do not Some are born into families where they’re fortunate enough to have a high emphasis on education Their parents are well educated their parents help them with their homework Others are not so keep those things in mind as we continue to watch this video They were all carpenters making $25 per hour While they were very similar in all these respects they had different priorities For example Tom chose to work 20 hours per week while his brother dick worked 40 hours and Harry 60 it should also be noted that Harry’s wife worked full-time as an office manager for a salary of $50,000 Dick’s wife sold real estate part-time ten hours a week and made $25,000 per year Tom’s wife did not work Tom and dick spent all of their family income since they paid into Social Security they figured they didn’t need to save for retirement Harry and his wife on the other hand had over many years put away money each month and invested it in stocks and bonds Here’s how it worked out Tom Keep in mind with that video that there are very poor people in the US who work 60-hour weeks kind of eludes This idea that a lot of poor people only work 20 hours a week They just want to have a good time blow a lot of their money when in reality there are very poor people, who are Constantly working. They might work multiple jobs because they don’t get insurance and one of their jobs. So keep that in mind in How that video can be misleading? Tom made 25 thousand dollars a year dick and his wife made seventy five thousand dollars and Harry and his wife one hundred and fifty thousand dollars When a new housing development opened up in their community, the brothers decided to buy equally priced homes on the same private street One day the brothers decided to pool their funds for the purpose of improving their Street Concerned about crime and safety and wanting a more attractive setting for their homes The three families decided to install a security gate at the streets entrance repaved the streets surface and enhanced the lighting and landscaping the work was done for a total cost of $30,000 Harry assumed they would divide the bill three ways each brother paying ten thousand dollars, but Tom and Dick objected Why should we pay the same as you they said you make much more money than we do Harry was puzzled. What does that have to do with anything? He asked my family makes more money because my wife and I work long hours and because We have saved some of the money we’ve earned to make additional money for investments. Why should we be penalized for that? Know how the video makes it seem that those who are wealthy are only in that position because they worked hard in Reality Americans aren’t all brothers that started with the same opportunity. Same amount. Well You have people that started far ahead of others the Koch brothers inherited close to a billion dollars Of course, it’s gonna be easier for them to become wealthy than someone who grew up with immigrant parents and it’s really convenient for the billionaire class to not mention the idea of inheritance to make it appear as if all of them are completely deserving of their circumstances in life Harry you can work and save all you like Tom countered but my wife and I want to enjoy ourselves now not 25 years from now fine Tom do what you want It’s a free country. But why should I have to pay for that? I? Can’t believe you’re being so unbrotherly Tom argued you have a lot of money and I don’t I thought you’d be more generous At this point dick the peacemaker in the family entered the conversation I’ve got an idea dick said our combined income is 250 thousand dollars and 30 thousand dollars is 12 percent of that amount Why don’t we each pay that percentage of our income under that formula Tom? Would pay three thousand I would pay nine thousand and Harry would pay eighteen thousand I have a much better idea said Tom and one that’s fairer than what you’re proposing Dick and Harry turned to Tom Harry should pay twenty three thousand four hundred and fifty dollars dick You should pay six thousand five hundred fifty dollars, and I will pay nothing – dick this sounded completely arbitrary and not really fair, but it did have one big plus His share would be two thousand four hundred and fifty dollars less under Tom’s formula than under his own so He decided to be silent Harry however was stunned You want me to pay almost eighty percent of the bill despite the fact that each of us is receiving the exact same benefits Where did you get such a crazy idea? From no less an authority than the US government Tom responded as he pulled out a great booklet. It’s all right here in the IRS tax tables This is the progressive income tax system all US taxpayers live under and I don’t see why we should be any different In fact, I believe all future improvements should be paid in this way works for me said dick So by a vote of two to one the cost of the street improvements was divided as Tom had proposed even though they benefited equally and Even though the reason Harry had more money was that he and his wife had worked many more hours than his brothers in their lives And had saved some of what they had earned Instead of spending it all Tom and Dick lived happily ever after with their new arrangement harry grumbled a lot. But whenever he complained his brothers called him greedy and selfish the end One of the most misleading things about that video is that they don’t mention the fact that the first income tax was implemented in 1894 in the time of William Jennings Bryan and his populist message and it was implemented primarily for the wealthy to pay We didn’t have poor people paying the income tax initially. You need to understand that poor people pay other kinds of taxes They pay sales tax they still pay property tax and so For This video to make it seem like all the burden is on wealthy people. It’s just not Just not accurate It doesn’t bring up the principle and economics of ability to pay The idea that some people if you try to tax everyone in a flat rate those that are making 20 grand a year They are barely able to survive as is they’re not going to have enough money to buy food compared The person who’s making 200 grand a year or 2 million a year There are economists who argue that a flat tax cannot work and that it is not fair. I want to also highlight with this video the part how Claims that the other brothers called the wealthy one and greedy People call the wealthy greedy in this day and age in large part Because they’ve sent jobs overseas The middle class is shrinking the wages are shrinking and the wealthiest people are going after Social Security and they’re going after Medicare Medicaid Programs that poor people depend on to survive and they get by So this idea that Wealthy people are being called greedy Just because they they work harder and they’re trying to be careful with their money. That’s that’s a myth. I Want to highlight as well when we talk about the wealthy, I’m not talking about people that May be like a first generation millionaire. Someone who worked really hard saved a lot of money Maybe now they have a net worth somewhere between two to six million dollars. I personally know people like that and I admire them I’m talking about billionaires who have absolutely ridiculous amounts of money Maybe even hundred millionaires that have over a hundred million dollars in net worth Especially if these people inherited their money inherited money is Absolutely ridiculous, if we truly believe in a meritocracy, we should not celebrate Anyone who inherited their wealth. I just wanted to highlight the ways that this video was misleading as are many of the videos by Prager University Those two brothers who? spend a lot of money funding Funding these videos. They should come out and be willing to to film themselves instead of having to go through Dennis Prager If you enjoy it, give me a like give me a subscription. Thank you

  1. It's a parable. It's not meant to explain all the different ways people can make money or whether they earned it or not.
    The income tax of 1894 that you mentioned was found unconstitutional. The income tax only started in 1913 after the 16th Amendment. You are right, it was only paid by the wealthy. I don't understand your point though.

  2. It is simply intellectually dishonest to evaluate this video by throwing in a comparison of those born into greater wealth than others. The brothers were born into the same family. You throw in jobs going overseas as an issue.  Where did the video present information that the older brother was sending jobs overseas? Who cares who funded the video? Stick to the facts of the situation presented in the video if you think you are going to expose anything.

  3. You fail to recognize that there are many people in the US that start out with nothing and work their tails off, and there are many who don’t. This video teaches the true principle that the benefit should cost the same amount for all buyers. People who don’t have the ability to pay should not get the benefit. That’s life.

  4. From another commenter;
    Ten things socialist can't understand: You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift. You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong. You cannot help little men by tearing down big men. You cannot lift the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer. You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich. You cannot establish sound security on borrowed money. You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred. You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than you earn. You cannot build character and courage by destroying men's initiative and independence. And you cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they can and should do for themselves.


    Margaret Thatcher: Socialism looks like a great idea until you run out of someone else’s money.

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