It is a commonplace, for libertarians at least, that coercive redistribution cuts into charity by reducing the funds available for charitable giving. But Arthur C. Brooks, in his book Who Really Cares, points to another effect of redistribution on giving… To be precise, an effect of a belief in redistribution. From an interview with Brooks in the Acton Institute’s Religion & Liberty:
…the belief that the role of government is to provide for needs—that belief in and of itself suppresses charitable giving. Ask somebody, “do you think the government should do more to redistribute income?” People who strongly disagree with that give twelve times more money a year to charity than the people who strongly agree with that. You virtually never see differences that are that big. Even when you correct for income and age and education, there are big differences that persist between [those two] groups.