Classical Liberalism V.S. Reform Liberalism on the Issue of Wealth Redistribution and Income

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Brayden Sander (UCID 10080322)
October 14th 2011
Jay Makarenko
POLI 201

Writing Assignment
Classical Liberalism V.S. Reform Liberalism on the issue of Wealth Redistribution and Income

Classical Liberalism is against government interventionism in all realms of life. They believe that everyone should be treated equally regardless of income. This differs from reform liberalism, as they want government intervention to guarantee equality of opportunity. This is made possible by progressive income tax, government regulation on big business, and social welfare. In My opinion Classical Liberalism is superior as its fair and easier to implement than reform Liberalism.

Classical Liberalists think that every man or women is responsible for their own destiny, and that the government should not hinder the individuals, or businesses pursuit of it. They also have no mandate to correct the results of this, regardless of how positive, or negative. They think that people should not be governed differently based on how successful they are. Economic discrimination is a two way street, and wealthy individuals should not lose excess income, or opportunity. This is why they want a flat tax, similar to GST, to replace the progressive income tax we have now. Reform liberalist’s believe that low-income individuals will spend a greater proportion of their income on necessities, rather than luxury goods. Therefore they should be subject to lower income tax rates. A progressive income tax is ideal for a Reform Liberalist, as the increased tax revenue from the higher earners will be redistributed to social programs that provide welfare and equality of opportunity for the poor.

A Reform Liberalist would have a problem with the big national oligopolies, as the limited competition restricts consumer freedom, and can lead to the consumers being exploited. Many Classical liberalists’ would say that there are many large incalculable benefits that these large companies...
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