Thomas Sowell provides an inconvenient comparison:
The current controversy over whether to deal with our massive national debt by cutting spending, or whether instead to raise tax rates on “the rich,” is a classic example of talking points versus reality.
Most of those who favor simply raising tax rates on “the rich” — or who say that we cannot afford to allow the Bush “tax cuts for the rich” to continue — show not the slightest interest in the history of what has actually happened when tax rates were raised to high levels on “the rich,” as compared with what has actually happened when there have been “tax cuts for the rich.”
The political battles about whether to have high tax rates on people in high income brackets or to instead have “tax cuts for the rich” have been fought out in at least four different administrations in the 20th century — under Presidents Calvin Coolidge, John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan, and George W. Bush.
And it worked out the same way every time. But punishing the people who provide jobs for their success, and guaranteeing equality of results rather than opportunity, is far more important to “progressives” than strengthening economic freedom and prosperity will ever be.