Bernie Sanders’ Inequality Fallacies


Fallacies abound about economic inequality, but one of the worst is confusing income categories with human beings.

Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders recently perpetrated this confusion: “Our economic goals have to be redistributing a significant amount of [wealth] back from the top 1 percent … Unchecked growth – especially when 99 percent of all new income goes to the top 1 percent – is absurd,” he fulminated.” But the “top one percent” and the “bottom 99 percent” are statistical categories — not living and breathing human beings. Confusing the one with the other encourages fallacious thinking.

The late economist Joseph Schumpeter compared […]