Inequality and Risk and Paul and Tim
Paul Graham is always worth a read, and his recent essay on inequality and risk is no exception. It revisits a topic that he's written on before, namely that the economic inequality caused by rewarding productive behaviour (his example, starting a start-up) is a good thing, as it drives people to create wealth, thereby raising the general level of wealth for everyone. I agree with the basic thrust of the argument, but diverge when it comes to the details - for example, how much to tax the rich. Tim Bray (he of XML fame) has written an interesting and lucid response. I think my own opinion lies somewhere in the middle of the two viewpoints, but I'm not yet sure exactly where on that line.