Although, like most people, I had no prior experience in raising children before my first son was born, I did the best I could. And one of my parental triumphs came once when I was driving them down a rural road where strawberries were being raised that, for reasons I probably still don’t understand, had huge plastic sheets over them on the ground. So I pointed that out and said to my young children, “Look kids, that’s where they raise plastic!” The response was: “Really Daddy, Oh Really?” to which I simply kept quiet. Then about five miles down the road one of my sons responded “Oh, come on Dad!” But that was a way to teach my children to analyze all information they receive – even including when it comes from their “extremely wise” Daddy. . . .

And another approach I took when raising them was to tell them “Who says Life is Fair?” For example, if I took one child shopping with me and bought that child an ice cream cone, and the others later complained, that would be my answer. (But, even so, I did try to equalize those trips.) I bring those approaches up for a purpose, because today there is a large movement to compare the earnings of the higher stratus of society with those of the lower stratus. For example, this movement bemoans the fact that there is a substantial disparity today between the top 20 percent income shares and the lower 80 percent. And that is true, and will almost always be true in a Free Market Society. So “That isn’t fair!” is the cry. Fortunately, when President Biden was still Vice President he was quoted as saying “You can’t eat equality, you know.” And I hope his actions now as President reflect that reality. Why? Because, according to a study authored by Robert Lawson of SMU Dallas and James Dean of West Virginia University, countries with more economic freedom have higher income levels at every single 10 percent grouping, from the poorest 10 percent to the highest. So the test should not be about the income disparity, but instead should rightfully be about utilizing the economic approach where all people actually earn more money! In other words, as Mr. Lawson puts it, “Voters have to ask themselves if they would rather have a larger share of a small pie or a smaller share of a big one, especially when the latter will give them more to eat.” I know my answer, and I think that makes life more fair! And, upon reflection, I’ll bet that you agree with me. But the problem is that, in politics, reality is irrelevant. It is only the voters’ perception of reality that matters. So please help us change those perceptions because then everyone will come out ahead.

Thought for the week: Recently I told my wife that, at this point in her life, she should learn to embrace her mistakes. So she gave me a hug.

Judge Jim Gray (Ret.) Superior Court of Orange County, California 2012 Libertarian Candidate for Vice President

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