Asking people who have more money and/or more wealth (not the same thing, technically) to pay more taxes isn’t class warfare. It’s not even “redistribution” of wealth, which is much less violent than class warfare.
Class warfare isn’t increasing taxes on the rich. Class warfare is forcibly taking wealth away from the wealthy, violently. It might even entail forcing them from homes and opulent offices into the street; it might even entail killing and injuring. Warfare is warfare, after all, and one of the problems with this debate is that it trivializes the notion of war. If the poor and middle class really wanted to conduct class warfare, you’d see blood in the streets. Instead, what President Obama proposes is a slight increase in tax rates. How that qualifies as “warfare” is beyond me.
Asking people with more wealth to shoulder more of the social burden is, at its core, a call for people who have more to do more. Most people with wealth already, at least they would say, do this anyway in the form of charitable contributions, philanthropy, etc. So why is paying more taxes such anathema to them, if they’re already willing to spend the money anyway? The answer to that (and yes, I’m speculating wildly here since I’m not a wealthy person) is that they currently get to write off charitable contributions from their taxes, and find other ways to mask their financial interests as charity. There’s no other explanation that makes much sense. If the wealthy want to help the less fortunate, then they should be willing to do so even if it costs them more of their wealth.
So let’s take this “class warfare” rhetoric and put it where it belongs–nowhere. There’s no revolution happening here. Barack Obama supports hegemonic global corporate capitalism as much as George W. Bush and his gang did. George W. Bush, misguided as he and his cabal were, would likely have wanted to alleviate suffering as much as Barack Obama does–at least in some sense of the term “suffering.” The stances just aren’t that different, and I’m sick of hearing conservatives go completely haywire trying to argue that Obama is some kind of radical.