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Oh Mais No!

When Karol and I were at Clemson University (1992-1997), we once had the chairman of Clemson’s Department of Philosophy & Religious Studies to dinner at our home.  He was (and, I presume, remains) far left.  I recall that at that dinner he accused Karol, me, and others who support markets of being "brainwashed" into thinking that high marginal tax rates discourage productive, income-earning activities.  According to this gentleman, raising tax rates even to stratospheric levels does not affect taxpayers’ behavior.

He  was  sure that  Europeans had a much better model than Americans.

Now comes word from France, through this report in today’s Washington Post, that

On average, at least one millionaire leaves France every day to take up
residence in more wealth-friendly nations, according to a government

[France’s] wealth tax — officially called the solidarity tax — is
collected on top of income, capital gains, inheritance and social
security taxes. It’s part of the reason France consistently ranks at
the top of Forbes magazine’s annual Tax Misery Index — a global
listing of the most heavily taxed nations.

Wealthy citizens’ tax
bills can be higher than their incomes, according to tax analysts.
President Jacques Chirac’s government attempted to rectify that
disparity last year with changes intended to guarantee that no one
would pay more than 60 percent of income in taxes. But many
businesspeople say actual maximum tax rates still hover at around 72

It’s delicious to imagine what fun Frederic Bastiat would have with the fact that this tax that drives many French from France is called "the solidarity tax."

Oh, no surprise:

Socialist leaders and some government officials argue that the rich are
merely trying to shirk their social responsibilities by fleeing the
country with their millions.