Thursday, June 15, 2017
Åsbjørn Melkevik (Harvard), A Tax Dead on Arrival: Classical Liberalism, Inheritance, and Social Mobility:
Historically, it is safe to say that very few laws did as much to stoke inequality as laws touching descents and hereditary transmissions. This paper attempts to see if the classical liberal tradition can endorse inheritance taxation so as to further fair equality of opportunity, as well as to lessen inequality of undeserved wealth. It argues that fair equality of opportunity is a necessary feature of market societies to make sure that they remain competitive.
Hence, inheritance taxation is most likely necessary from a classical liberal point of view as an instrument of social mobility to counter notable problems of social immobility, say hereditary vocational stratification, which a system of private property rights creates.