Saturday, March 9, 2013
Entitlements: Parental Unit Smith and CEO Jones
Parental Unit Smith lives in the US and works at a department store and makes minimum wage getting an average of 39 hours per week and will continue there in this capacity for the foreseeable future. This breaks out to less than $15,000 a year. Parental Unit Smith lives in a single income home where there are two young children. This money can’t cover the basic requirements of the household (food, shelter, transportation, healthcare).
CEO Jones lives in the US and is the Chief Executive Officer for a large reputable corporation. CEO Jones has amassed a personal wealth that would last ten people ten lifetimes. CEO Jones earns $10,000,000 per year.
Question: Is Parental Unit Smith “entitled” to some of CEO Jones’ money? We are not talking about CEO Jones giving Parental Unit Smith money out of the goodness of CEO’s heart. We are not talking about what a good and moral society ought to do. We are asking, “Does Parental Unit Smith have a “right” to some of CEO Jones’ money regardless of what CEO thinks and regardless of what society ought to do? If so, how much and why? Why isn’t CEO Jones entitled to the money?
Is it because a Smith entitlement “promotes the general welfare” of the country and a Jones entitlement does not? I can see that a Smith entitlement might put the required basics in the hands of Smith’s family. I can also see that a Jones entitlement might create a better job for Smith and so put the required basics in the hands of Smith’s family. What can you see?