Van Talmage
3 min readMay 27, 2022


This seems to be your logic: people are on assistance, assistance is bad, Democrats making America soft because these people on assistance aren’t trying hard enough. Inequality is good because it makes people work harder.

Maybe that is not how you should see it.

Let’s start with this point of agreement: there are some number (we can use your number) of folks on some sort of assistance.

Why are there so many needing assistance?


Our current implementation of capitalism drives money to the wealthy leaving a large population in need of a safety net.

And (as many examples have shown), without regulations, the owners of businesses/corporations would exploit workers.

The current system is creating a huge disparity in economic well-being and this is one of the root causes for our political division.

Conventional wisdom says that we should all strive for as much money as possible. This is greed, but it is also more: becoming wealthy is part of the American Dream and fits perfectly with our “economic growth” model. And, in your interpretation, pursuing wealth is the solution to much “assistance”.

Overall, what I am suggesting is that benefits of our capitalistic system are not being fairly distributed throughout our society. The rich get richer and the poor get poorer. That is the way our current system is designed to work. This is the problem. Not too much assistance, but rather a system that generates money for the top and leaves the lower half of the country in trouble.

Let’s look at how our economic system is structured to drive money to the top.

To understand this simply, follow the money:

1. At end of year companies and corporations measure overall profits

(Profits = Revenues – (Cost of Goods + Expenses))

2. From Profits companies pay taxes, debts, capital improvement and most important for this discussion: Bonuses and DIVIDENDS.

3. Bonus Compensation is usually for top level management.

4. DIVIDENDS are distributed to shareholders. This is key:

The top 10% and particularly the top 1% own most of the shares that received these dividends. About 84% if stocks are held by the top 10% (financial scale) of the country. The money is flowing to those who are already wealthy.

Approximately 54% of the country are shareholders. The other 46%, have gained no benefit from these profits, nothing.

So let’s repeat and understand. The system is built to send money to the top.

At this time in America, we have huge disparities on who is getting the benefits of our economic system. The top half of the country is getting rich off the exploits of labor and money from consumers, while more people are driven downwards economically. That is the way the system is structured.

Inequality is a symptom of the problem and needs to be changed because the current system is not working well. Much of our political unrest in this country stems from this problem.

The obvious solution (easy to say) is a culturally induced idea that some portion of the DIVIDENDS be returned to the workers who made it happen.

This should be part of the decision (by management or corporate board) about how to distribute the DIVIDENDS. (My very strong recommendation: some to workers, some to shareholders but NOT ALL to shareholders). Note that if this does not happened because of cultural inducements, regulation by government is sometimes required to insure common well-being.

This distribution of benefits would happen prior to any income taxes. The wealthy would get less money but they would pay less taxes. The number of people needing assistance would go down and hence there would be less government and less government cost.

And further, money goes back in society/economy faster with better overall results (jobs, economic growth). Everybody wins.

The way to solve the too many people on assistance is to fix the root cause: better and more distribution of the benefits of our economic system. Instead of worrying about Democrats and socializing, fix the real problem and help make capitalism work for everyone, not just the few.