The most common argument for inequality is that we are not equal and that we should not be equal. Furthermore, the argument says that inequality is an actual driver for innovation and economic prosperity, leading to the conclusion that we, in fact, do not want to reduce inequality and that implementing some of the more progressive economic ideas would inevitably lead to socialistic society and stagnation.
Although the introductory premise of the above argument is correct, everything else is wrong. Yes, we are not equal — not biologically, not with our abilities, or by our mental capacities — and I agree that we as a society should not aspire to create a nation of clones. Our differences and uniqueness are what make our lives more interesting. Although this is true, it is completely misleading.
Imagine a hundred meter race in which everyone would not start at the beginning, but, instead, someone would start way behind the starting line and someone else next to the finishing line.
Would you watch that kind race?
Would you be interested in spending your time on a game where all the outcomes are known at the beginning?
Even WWE Wrestling is less predictive: it has different variables and some kind of scenario, and, usually, no one will tell you what the outcome will be.
Why would you bother watching the kind of race where you could immediately tell who the winner would be before it starts?
We all know that we are different, and that is not an issue; some people are taller, stronger, smarter, or more creative. The unfair advantage is the main issue of the economic inequality. The issue is that we all do not start our race from the same starting line. Those further from the finish line have less chances of succeeding. Therein lies the paradox of economic inequality we are facing now: often, that unnatural advantage has not been earned by merit or effort, but it is given by birth, by inheritance, not reflecting the true value of individuals.
This means that, regardless of how smart or talented one individual is, if she/he has a bad starting position, rough environment, poor food, and bad health conditions, that person is destined to fail.
Imagine: even if ten thousand people succeed in lifting themselves out from the bottom that is only 0.00014% of the entire population. If we measured this in terms of IQ, you would need to have a coefficient of 174 *1 and that is very high IQ, which a very small number people have. Genius IQ is generally considered to begin around 140 to 145, which means that not even all geniuses will succeed, and, if all of them will not succeed, the real question is what will happen with the remaining 99.9998% of the population.
What is it that that we want as society?
Do we want to glorify behaviors which will benefit our society or the ones that will have a damaging impact on it?
Who would you rather give significant access to funds: people who will waste it on drugs, sport cars, and wild parties, or people who can actually benefit society with science, art, and culture?
If we do not praise members who are really talented, what are we praising?
Ideally, what we want is that every person has the same, equal rights at the beginning: a loving environment, healthy and nutritious food, decent housing, enough care, good education, and a life without fear that one day she/he may experience unemployment and struggle to survive.
Many before use struggled to create a society where we do not need to fear hunger and starvation. Now, we have all the means to create a world of plenty, but it seems that we want to create some kind of survivalist, dystopian horror game out of this planet. There is absolutely no need for that. Countless generations worked hard in order to crate future where we don’t need to. There is no need to create an artificial scarcity, in order to sustain someone’s sadistic idea of power and control.
Doing it, would be an evident sign of lack of intelligence and imagination while solving problems we have now and we are going to face in future.
Having a hammer in hand,
does not mean that smashing
is the solution for everything.