The smaller the pie the higher the probability that somebody will resort to theft. That somebody includes the government. From Charles Hugh Smith at oftwominds.com:
The takeaway here is obvious: earn as little money as possible and invest your surplus labor in assets that can’t be expropriated.
Expropriation: dispossessing the populace of property and property rights, via the legal and financial over-reach of monetary and political authorities.
All expropriations are pernicious, but the most destructive is the expropriation of labor’s value while the excessive gains of unproductive speculation accrue to the elite that owns most of the nation’s wealth.
In a nation in which the leadership has finely honed the art and artifice of legalized looting and financial legerdemain, it’s not surprising that the expropriation of labor’s value takes many forms. For the self-employed and small business proprietor, the list is practically endless:
1. Proliferating junk fees for permits, licence renewals, applications, late fees, penalties, fines for violating obscure regulations, etc. (Never mind if you’re losing money; by definition, as a business owner you’re “rich” and deserve petty expropriations. If you’re Amazon, however, we’ll shower you with subsidies and tax breaks.)
2. Sky-high liability insurance, disability insurance and workers compensation insurance, because all the fraud and friction in these systems adds expense and you’re the one who will pay for it all.