Bill Gates is a known advocate for the rich being forced to pay more taxes, but after some searching of his past, it only seems that he’s become vocal about that over the past couple of decades.
He recently re-upped his position during an interview with CNN as they were talking about Trump’s tax bill. Gates lauded the idea of a stronger safety net and “those at the top are paying higher taxes.” Translated, Gates is praising the idea of more welfare and entitlements, and the rich paying for it.
Gates then went on to say that “I need to pay higher taxes,” then talked about how people like him should be required to do so.
— CNN (@CNN) February 19, 2018
First off, no one is stopping Gates from paying higher taxes. If he “needs” to, then throwing more money at the IRS is perfectly within his right. Advocating that other men in his position have more of their money taken away just because he thinks it should happen seems like the teacher’s pet advocating for more homework on behalf of rest of the unwilling classroom.
But after looking through Gates’ history, it seems that he hasn’t always trumpeted this position. Gates historians may know better than I, but I don’t see him saying anything about paying more taxes while he was a young man attempting to take his growing company to the stratosphere. Only now that he’s sitting comfortably at the top does he want to throw around this idea that people with millions or billions should pay significantly more in taxes. If anyone finds him saying differently as a young man, I’ll gladly retract this point, but not the following.
This is interesting for a number of reasons, namely because if taxes were to be raised on people, it would make it much harder for them to grow as big as Gates. People need to retain the money they earn so that they can use it to grow the business in various ways. Forcing them to give that money up would be essentially shutting the door on them.
It’s important to remember that not every millionaire is comfortably situated in their millionaire status. They need that money to become even more wealthy and hire the necessary people to help expand that business, buy the necessary land or machinery to make it function more efficiently, etc, etc. Raising taxes on them would make that harder to do, and Gates, being a billionaire, should know that.
Furthermore, it’s interesting that he’s saying this in light of the GOP tax plan which has helped so many businesses grow and reward their people at the same time. Even Apple got on board with that, using their earnings to reward employees and build a whole different campus to create 20,000 more jobs.
Lower taxes make for a better business environment, which helps people get jobs so that they may live comfortably. Instead, Gates is suggesting millionaires and billionaires should pay more, strengthening entitlements, which are proven to stagnate people.
In short, Gates can sit comfortably at the summit of his money mountain and throw all the cash around that he wants with little consequence to him now. However, not everyone trying to make it can be so lucky, and he would be better off investing that money in his own company in order to create even more jobs.