Often used as snub against those who believe we should tax the rich more, take their second homes, and get the wealthy to contribute more to public life, the "politics of envy" is making its way back into contemporary political discourse. In our age of growing inequality and the growing chasm between rich and poor around the world, there is a resurgent belief in the need for a redistribution of wealth. Recently, Ed Milliband's proposed mansion tax on homes worth over £2million was blasted by Myleene Klass who told him: "you can't just point at things and tax them". Furthermore, Angelina Jolie has said this proposed mansion tax by the Labour Leader "could put me off" buying a home in the UK. The intervention of Klass and Jolie illustrates something of the backlash against the so-called "politics of envy".
However, some say that is not so much the politics of envy but rather just a statement of values in society and a belief that those who benefit more from society should have a legal obligation to contribute more to society. So are those who want to redistribute wealth in society motivated by justice, or by envy?
Are the new proposals for taxing wealth, such taxes on mansions, marking the return of the politics of envy or simply an expression of social values and justice? Vote and share your views about these political proposals.
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Taxing wealth: the return of the politics of envy?
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