What Thomas Jefferson had to say about redistributing the wealth

September 21, 2012

Mitt Romney says that those who advocate redistribution of wealth are un-American, so I guess the following historical extract is un-American, too:

"It should seem then that it must be because of the enormous wealth, which places them above attention to the increase of their revenues, that I am conscious that an equal division of property is impracticable, but [that] the consequences of this enormous inequality producing so much misery to the bulk of mankind, legislators cannot invent too many devices for subdividing property. Another means of silently lessening the inequality of property is to exempt all from taxation below a certain point, and to tax the higher portions of property in geometrical progression as they rise."

The letter, written Sept. 28, 1785, is by Thomas Jefferson to James Madison. Jefferson was describing the conditions in France before the Revolution.

We have similar conditions, and Mr. Romney puts the blame on people who are in fact often the victim of those who have damaged their own nation by transferring so much of its industry to foreign lands in order to enrich themselves.

Ronald P. Bowers, Timonium

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