You have no authority here, Jackie Weaver
- Apr 3, 2020
I haven't, but let me explain with another quote...Dirty Hipsters said:I think you've both completely misunderstood what I'm saying.
My point is that people no more want to be better than others than they want to be equal. Or to be more accurate, that the population as a whole has both desires to some extent; one may be more prevalent than the other by individual, or even by society. My point is more that when we say something is inherent human nature, I think is stands the risk of being very misleading.The reason socialism doesn't work is because people fundamentally don't want to be equal, and the moment that someone has a little more than other they will fight to keep it rather than give it up for the good of society.
A psychological study (in the USA, I think), for instance, found that a majority of those questioned would prefer to be less well off themselves if it meant that the rich were less relatively richer (e.g. 10:1 instead of 100:1). There's an obvious issue about how this hypothetical would translate into the real world, but it illustrates that imbalances in power, wealth etc. are actually causes of significant angst. Perhaps in ways you could argue it's similar to the notion of wanting to be superior: so as being superior might make people feel better, being inferior makes them feel worse. Equality, even if approximate rather than absolute, thus seems favourable.
It will always exist to some extent as you say, but there are perhaps ways to reduce / ameliorate it. Or to convert it to less disruptive forms. If you imagine that wealth is a prime determinant of status in society, it could perhaps be partially replaced by other rewards (e.g. public honours) which allow people their pride and superiority without gaining the same sort of power that money can leverage.