Quote of the day 16th March 2023



Paul Holdsworth said…
Sowell is wrong - income can legitimately be said to be distributed:
"Distribution - the way in which people or things are spread out in a place:
a map showing distribution of global population;
They aimed to achieve a more equitable distribution of resources/wealth."

I'm sure you'll consider this more semantic quibbling, Chris, but it doesn't hurt to point out that words can have more than a single meaning - "distribution" is one such.
Chris Whiteside said…
You are exactly right about one thing - yes, I consider this semantic quibbling.

There is indeed a statistical sense of the word "distributed" in which you are correct.

There is also a sense of the word distributed to mean "given out to people" in which Thomas Sowell's statement is correct and makes perfect sense.
Paul Holdsworth said…
The "voluminous and often fervent" literature on income distribution is utilising the meaning I referred to, not the meaning Sowell suggests it does. It's therefore a silly and nonsensical quote.
Chris Whiteside said…
I think we are just going to have to agree to disagree on this point. There is plenty of literature on income distribution in each of these two senses of the word.

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