Andrew Yang and Michael Bennet are out after New Hampshire

Andrew Yang has always been an irritating candidate, one who traded on his race and his alleged math skills to justify his candidacy.  His race is, and ought to have been, irrelevant.  His math skills aren't much use, either, if they're not paired with practical knowledge.

Even more irritating, though, is that appalling "Freedom Dividend" he kept advancing, something that amounted to little more than a sneaky form of wealth redistribution, a bribe to voters, and an inflation creator.

Here's how Yang described his Freedom Dividend:

Andrew would implement the Freedom Dividend, a universal basic income of $1,000/month, $12,000 a year, for every American adult over the age of 18. This is independent of one's work status or any other factor. This would enable all Americans to pay their bills, educate themselves, start businesses, be more creative, stay healthy, relocate for work, spend time with their children, take care of loved ones, and have a real stake in the future.

Other than regular increases to keep up the cost of living, any change to the Freedom Dividend would require a constitutional amendment.

It will be illegal to lend or borrow against one's Dividend.

A Universal Basic Income at this level would permanently grow the economy by 12.56 to 13.10 percent — or about $2.5 trillion by 2025 — and it would increase the labor force by 4.5 to 4.7 million people.  Putting money into people's hands and keeping it there would be a perpetual boost and support to job growth and the economy.

That's just pie-in-the-sky talk.

The only way to generate a "freedom dividend" — that is, the only way to have the government redistribute $3,045,216,000,000 per year to the 253,768,000 or so Americans over 18 years — would be to impose more taxes on middle and higher earners.

Yang claimed he was going to get all that money on an annual basis by imposing higher taxes on Amazon, Google, and other companies.  But in the real world, companies don't actually pay taxes.  All they do is pass the costs on to consumers.  Whether the taxes are on corporations or on individuals, they still come out of individual pockets.

In other words, all Yang is proposing is a form of wealth redistribution, and a less than honest one at that.  At the very least, if he were being honest, he could propose a flat-rate Value Added Tax that would fall more heavily on wealthy people, who consume more.  He knew, though, that this proposal would be too unpopular to go anywhere.  Even lower-income consumers don't want higher sales taxes.

The other way to have a "freedom dividend" is to print money.  In this regard, it's important to remember that government does not create wealth.  All governments take wealth and redistribute it.  Smart governments take as little wealth as possible and implement policies that allow individuals to create wealth.  Stupid governments take lots of wealth to redistribute.  But no government, smart or dumb, creates wealth.  All that government can do is print money, and the more it prints, the less each unit of currency is worth.

With everyone in America getting an extra $12,000 annually, prices would simply rise to match that new level of money floating around.  The utility bill that was $40 a month would suddenly be $80 or $180.  People's relative wealth would remain unchanged.  This means that Yang's imagined benefit of people being healthier, wealthier, and better educated would instantly evaporate.

The real freedom dividend over the past three years has come from Trump's policies.  Through tax cuts and repealed regulations, he's had the government stand aside so the American people can keep their own money, rather than paying it to the government and then having the government give some of it back to them.

With their own money still in hand, they can then create their own wealth.  Under Trump, real wages are going up, especially among lower-income workers.  Moreover, because the wage increases are based upon actual wealth increases in society as a whole, inflation is being kept at a minimum.

Yang hasn't figured any of that out.  While he might be able to boast about MATH, he and all the other Democrats who believe that government is the source of wealth fail to grasp how the world works.  (Bernie doesn't care about economic practicality.  His dream is for the government to own all people's labor and to divvy out their necessities on an as-needed basis.  In the old days, this was known as "slavery.")  None of them belongs in high office, so seeing Yang go is just culling the herd.

And for those who care, Sen. Michael Bennet, a Colorado Democrat, the man nobody ever remembered was running, is out, too.  He too wanted to hand out taxpayer money to everyone, without ever considering the sensible and provably effective alternative, which is to let people keep their own money in the first place.

Andrew Yang has always been an irritating candidate, one who traded on his race and his alleged math skills to justify his candidacy.  His race is, and ought to have been, irrelevant.  His math skills aren't much use, either, if they're not paired with practical knowledge.

Even more irritating, though, is that appalling "Freedom Dividend" he kept advancing, something that amounted to little more than a sneaky form of wealth redistribution, a bribe to voters, and an inflation creator.

Here's how Yang described his Freedom Dividend:

Andrew would implement the Freedom Dividend, a universal basic income of $1,000/month, $12,000 a year, for every American adult over the age of 18. This is independent of one's work status or any other factor. This would enable all Americans to pay their bills, educate themselves, start businesses, be more creative, stay healthy, relocate for work, spend time with their children, take care of loved ones, and have a real stake in the future.

Other than regular increases to keep up the cost of living, any change to the Freedom Dividend would require a constitutional amendment.

It will be illegal to lend or borrow against one's Dividend.

A Universal Basic Income at this level would permanently grow the economy by 12.56 to 13.10 percent — or about $2.5 trillion by 2025 — and it would increase the labor force by 4.5 to 4.7 million people.  Putting money into people's hands and keeping it there would be a perpetual boost and support to job growth and the economy.

That's just pie-in-the-sky talk.

The only way to generate a "freedom dividend" — that is, the only way to have the government redistribute $3,045,216,000,000 per year to the 253,768,000 or so Americans over 18 years — would be to impose more taxes on middle and higher earners.

Yang claimed he was going to get all that money on an annual basis by imposing higher taxes on Amazon, Google, and other companies.  But in the real world, companies don't actually pay taxes.  All they do is pass the costs on to consumers.  Whether the taxes are on corporations or on individuals, they still come out of individual pockets.

In other words, all Yang is proposing is a form of wealth redistribution, and a less than honest one at that.  At the very least, if he were being honest, he could propose a flat-rate Value Added Tax that would fall more heavily on wealthy people, who consume more.  He knew, though, that this proposal would be too unpopular to go anywhere.  Even lower-income consumers don't want higher sales taxes.

The other way to have a "freedom dividend" is to print money.  In this regard, it's important to remember that government does not create wealth.  All governments take wealth and redistribute it.  Smart governments take as little wealth as possible and implement policies that allow individuals to create wealth.  Stupid governments take lots of wealth to redistribute.  But no government, smart or dumb, creates wealth.  All that government can do is print money, and the more it prints, the less each unit of currency is worth.

With everyone in America getting an extra $12,000 annually, prices would simply rise to match that new level of money floating around.  The utility bill that was $40 a month would suddenly be $80 or $180.  People's relative wealth would remain unchanged.  This means that Yang's imagined benefit of people being healthier, wealthier, and better educated would instantly evaporate.

The real freedom dividend over the past three years has come from Trump's policies.  Through tax cuts and repealed regulations, he's had the government stand aside so the American people can keep their own money, rather than paying it to the government and then having the government give some of it back to them.

With their own money still in hand, they can then create their own wealth.  Under Trump, real wages are going up, especially among lower-income workers.  Moreover, because the wage increases are based upon actual wealth increases in society as a whole, inflation is being kept at a minimum.

Yang hasn't figured any of that out.  While he might be able to boast about MATH, he and all the other Democrats who believe that government is the source of wealth fail to grasp how the world works.  (Bernie doesn't care about economic practicality.  His dream is for the government to own all people's labor and to divvy out their necessities on an as-needed basis.  In the old days, this was known as "slavery.")  None of them belongs in high office, so seeing Yang go is just culling the herd.

And for those who care, Sen. Michael Bennet, a Colorado Democrat, the man nobody ever remembered was running, is out, too.  He too wanted to hand out taxpayer money to everyone, without ever considering the sensible and provably effective alternative, which is to let people keep their own money in the first place.