America should jack up its top tax rate to 70 percent

The super-rich will barely even feel it. But the rest of us will benefit enormously.

Donald Trump
(Image credit: (Brian Cahn/ZUMA Press/Corbis))

Thomas Piketty's new book, Capital in the 21st Century, painstakingly details the dynamics of wealth and income inequality throughout the last two centuries, and offers a somewhat grim picture of the future of economic inequality. Along the way, Piketty also offers his theory of the cause of exploding executive pay and how we can successfully combat this destructive trend.

Piketty's solution is to jack up taxes on top incomes to essentially confiscatory rates, as high as 80 percent even. Now, raising taxes on the rich in an effort to reduce inequality is a fairly generic idea. But Piketty's reasoning for why such a tax would be successful is much different from what advocates of such a move usually suggest.

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