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Lincoln believed that preventing wealth accumulation through laws would do more harm than good for a few key reasons:
- It would limit individual freedom and entrepreneurship. People should have the freedom to pursue wealth through legal means without government restrictions.
- Such laws could be difficult to implement and enforce fairly. It would be hard to determine what level of wealth is “too much” and prevent people from accumulating further wealth.
- Banning wealth accumulation could discourage innovation and risk-taking that leads to economic growth. Many wealthy people invest in new businesses and technologies.
- Lincoln had faith that a free market economy where people are able to benefit financially from their work and ideas is best for long-term prosperity overall. Some individuals getting wealthy does not inherently harm others.