We use cookies to provide some features and experiences in QOSHE

More information  .  Close
Aa Aa Aa
- A +

Tax The Rich, Then Tax Them Some More

9 14 189

If you close your eyes and listen, sometimes you can hear the Overton Window creaking open a little at a time, a gasp of glass against swollen wood.

Thanks to daring freshman Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and a few helpful wonks who’ve run the numbers and made the historical parallels, the idea of taxing the rich at much higher rates has burst into the political sphere with renewed vigor this week. Ocasio-Cortez suggested a 70 percent marginal tax rate on the very wealthy to fund America’s desperately needed priorities, emphatically including drastic changes to face the realities of climate change, and the Overton Window eased up an inch to accommodate this hot new draft of change.

The Overton Window is a term that describes the range of ideas acceptable within public discourse; it’s not a literal window, despite the abuse of metaphor by political columnists like myself. But as a resident of New York City, one of the most dramatically wealth-stratified urban areas in the nation, I think about windows a lot.

I think about the high, light-filled windows in the new Hudson Yards development project, for which New York’s taxpayers footed a $5.6 billion subsidy bill, and whose 4,000 apartments will cater to a moneyed international set that views New York real estate as a valuable place to park excess cash.

I think about other luxe windows in my city, glowing with gentle yellows for the residential pied-à-terres of the rich, and fluorescent for the offices where unimaginable streams of wealth get traded in countless........

© HuffPost