Wealth

Are We Doomed By Millennials Inheriting Cash? J.D. Tuccille Debates 'the largest inter-generational wealth transfer in history' on HuffPost Live

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aldenjewell / Foter

The latest pundit to warn that millennials will doom us all is Robert Reich, who writes at the Huffington Post that "we're on the cusp of the largest inter-generational wealth transfer in history" with those darned kids as the unworthy beneficiaries. He cautions that "the super rich have invested in businesses, real estate, art, and other assets," and that this is a bad thing that needs to be stopped lest it keep happening. Being Robert Reich, he wants to tax the hell out of it.

I debated the point on HuffPost Live with Richard Eskow of the Campaign for America's Future, and the Huffington Post's own Zach Carter. I made the point that income mobility is still strong, and that the folks at the top in one decade aren't necessarily those there 20 years later, which makes for an awfully short-lived "permanent aristocracy." And there's nothing wrong with leaving your money to the kids, since it's not stolen from a pot that would otherwise be shared with everybody else.

I also suggested that we clear away regulatory hurdles to entrepreneurship and avoid discouraging investment, so that everybody has a chance to piss off Robert Reich.