Discussion by: kampinkarl48
When it comes to economics, one of the greatest tragedies of our modern era is the ludicrous amounts of income inequality deemed necessary as "incentive" to work hard. Somebody earning more money for doing a more difficult task isn't unreasonable, in fact it's quite beneficial to society. However, giving ever-increasing wealth to a small set of people is the most damaging thing possible to the economy, our democracy, and our societal progress.
My hypothesis is this, if a maximum wage was implemented, people would still have incentive to work hard to achieve greater things, while not having incentive to pay their employees sub par wages.
The maximum wage doesn't have to be anything small either. If you say you want to be able to earn ten times the minimum wage, I believe that is more than suitable. But the minimum wage should still pay for all of an individual's wants and needs.
Quite simply, the goal of an economy is to get people the goods and services they need. Giving near unlimited access to some people and no access to others is simply unethical. Our society is producing more than enough goods and services for everyone, so not distributing them is simply a sign of a dysfunctional system.
You could very well make the arguement, "But what of artists and athletes who dont work all their lives?". I very simply counter with you set up a retirement fund for these individuals and spread the excess income elsewhere to those who need it.
You could also say ten times the income of the lowest earners isn't enough incentive to work hard. To that I say either you are quite lazy, or you fail to realize that having the cash for a ten times larger house, a ten times larger family, and ten times as many luxury items is a hell of a lot better than having equal to the lowest earner.
The argument could also be made that the lowest income isn't very high and that basing maximum income on that is foolhardy. If that is the case the minimum wage should be raised then, shouldn't it?
Any way you slice it, earning unlimited capital gives an individual vast power over others and tramples on economic functionality and social equality. Setting fair minimum and maximum wages puts balance in our society, taking us away from the state of near feudalism we live in while still keeping us far away form the dangers of socialism. It's a happy middle ground, what America has always strived for, and what our country (and others similar to it) desperately need to establish a more equal and just society.