Utopia funds liquidating
Suppose Alice is an effective altruist who supports whatever charity you think is most important and does a really good job of it. She lives in a town of 1000 people where nobody else is an effective altruist and everyone else just lives a pretty decent life and spends their extra money on, I don’t know, breeding virtual cats or something. Every time Bob pays a dollar in taxes, it destroys a random two dollars’ worth of wealth somewhere in the town.
And government programs would also disproportionately help the poorest of the poor, compared to economic gains which would disproportionately help the richest of the poor.But right now the tax on Bob isn’t big enough to be worse for Alice than a tax on Alice, and since Alice is the only important person in this situation, I don’t care.I can also imagine a world where a wise economist comes to town.Point 2 is why I stress the economists saying that the gains from cutting corporate taxes really won’t have that much effect on growth. If the government were a perfect effective altruist, it would be no contest – them having the money would be thousands of times more effective than random corporations (or even random middle-class people) having it.Even if the government were to give the money as a tax break to the working classes, it still seems really obvious to me that the increased utility swamps any effect from higher economic growth.