Conservative ABC


Everything isn't about power. Sorry, chums. Life is way too complex for you to try to figure it all out through the lens of a single explanation. That is the reductionism proper of small or, at best, lazy minds. Life is a milkshake full of thick nature, then topped off with randomness, and, at the end, decorated with a cherry, i.e. the social part, the culture, the space where there are interactions among not so rational people, a level in which humanity is still exploring what the hell is going on. And the only thing that matters is that when you gulp that bad boy it all mixes in the belly, and the belly aches but at the same time it feels good. And then we all die because, well, such is life. The point is that no element of the milkshake is independent or superior to the other. At least based on what we know so far.

Nobody is a self-made person, though. Every single day you walk over streets built by others, avoid getting rammed by a car thanks to a mixture of deterrence, trust, and traffic lights maintained by others, and, in general, take for granted several features of modern society that are paid for by the pooling of a portion of everyone's resources. However, you are one of those contributors too, and, as long as it is a fair share from your pocket that goes into the common goods, you are entitled to the rest, i.e. the fruits of your hard work. The other reason for chipping in the common pool is that the 80/20 distribution will always be there. It is as much about not idolizing the achievers as not demonizing the ones who got a bad hand or played their cards in a suboptimal manner. That's common decency and also common sense, as the greater the disparity the more resentment is created.

Now, some things are not (and should not be) business. Whether because there is no appetite for investment due to the excessive risks or the low rewards involved or, instead, because transforming those things into business would violate the individual's realm of autonomy. There are goods and services that should only be provided in a neutral, cost-efficient though non-profit oriented manner, and the role of any democratic and free society is to agree on what those are, calculating what is good for the individual and the community today, tomorrow, and in one hundred years. I stress the word free because there is a degree of common sense that has to be always taken into account: even if a majority decides that everybody should end up with the same chips at the end of the poker match, that is against freedom. We all make choices and each one has a cost. So, for example, if I really, really, really like sleeping late during the weekends then I must have the maturity and responsibility to internalize that cost. It is time that I am dreaming and resting but not using to learn how to, let's say, meow like a cat, but others are sacrificing their weekends to learn how to meow, so forcing them not to meow in order not to hurt my feelings or to call my bark a meow so we're all equal is an exercise in totalitarianism. That's a life without freedom. Frankly, more crappy than it actually is, and damn unfair if you ask me.

Those life choices, mixed up with talent plus a dash of fortune, is what everyone benefits from at the end. The more talented, committed, and lucky are needed by society doing their stuff, getting a coin for it, and enjoying it. When there's equality of opportunity it is logical that some will make it and some won't. And that's fine. I want the best vet checking my butt glands, for example, not a chum who will accidentally cut my balls because he was incompetent at vet school but got the degree anyway. So, we're all jockeying for being competent and getting dough for it. Some will win, some will lose, some will change tracks, and some will settle. That's fine. Competition is natural, desirable, and has been going on since the dawn of times. Humans didn't send the one legged caveman to hunt the lunch just to make him feel good. They sent the best hunter because, if not, they would starve.

That is what bugs me about this equity crap everyone is peddling recently. Sure, sure, there are inequalities that are brutally unfair, like getting a free pass because of who you are, who you know, who you shagged, or how much coin you slid under the table. That's something that we all should strive to minimize everyday, always. It is part of a sane social contract that everyone should have a decent life and get a shot at what they do best and love. But forcing the incompetent ones through a funnel so they get their medal too? Suck it. That's a recipe for disaster. Bridges will collapse, patients will die on the operating table, airplanes will fall, and they'll keep churning films based on DC Comics every freakin' year.

That spoiled brat of Marx, who loved champagne and fiesta so much that he pawned all the family's trinkets, said that philosophers interpret the world in various ways but that the point is to change it. That posh dilettante was dropped on his head when he was a baby. You don't change the world. You improve it, polishing up the dirty parts, fixing the broken ones, and leaving alone the working bits. Do you know how to tell the difference? Do not throw the baby out with the bathwater. What little Karl caused with his musings indicates that his idea of change was off with the baby, hence the massacres, the oppression, and the humiliation at grand scale. Humans have been consciously self-aware for very short time, and in such a speck in the desert of history things have gone from better to better until everyone in the developed world is fat, dumb and happy. Yes, there are environmental threats. Yes, there are parts of the world where nasty people do nasty things based on nasty beliefs. Yes, Arsenal hasn't won the Premier League in over a decade. But to say that all is crap and everything should be destroyed to be rebuilt again is proper of either a teenager or a resented loser.

Anybody with a little bit of life experience or some self-respect knows that if you have it bad in life, there are only two options: you are doing something wrong or the universe is conspiring to screw you up. And, frankly speaking, the universe is way too busy to be focusing on ruining your day. Grow the hell up.