Re: Resentment

From: Samantha Atkins (
Date: Wed Jul 04 2001 - 20:06:36 MDT

Lee Corbin wrote:
> Mike Lorrey wrote:
> > The only way the biggest kid on the playground can
> > avoid being resented is to become the class clown.
> That's more often false than true. The biggest kid is
> actually admired more than he is resented. On the other
> hand, class clowns usually don't find it easy to get
> appreciated in any other way than by being comedians.
> Unfortunately, among adults and among nations, admiration
> frequently turns into envy and then into resentment.
> I claim that only the very reflective have any chance in
> these cases of knowing whether their animosity towards
> others stems from actual injustice, or merely from envy.

I think that envy will always arise towards those considered
more capable than oneself under economic and sociological
systems based primarily upon scarcity models. In such systems
the premise is that there is not enough to go around so the most
able or in some sense best should get the most first, perhaps
leaving too little for oneself. As we come into increasing
abundance the basis for envy should decrease if and only if our
social, economic and even psychological systems adjust
accordingly. If we truly want to reduce envy and simultaneously
get more of the people behind full progress then we need imho to
find ways of sharing the increased wealth that are more

I do not believe that the market economy by itself is doing that
sufficiently. At the bottom end it is far too easy to fall into
economic destitution in the US today. There are too many people
working two or more jobs under poor conditions just to manage to
survive at all for me to believe that the market alone leads to
the good life. Too many people that do have better lifes are
have more debt than savings and are only a few paychecks from
bankruptcy and perhaps homelessness. Upstream their are too
many of even the technologically elite who have no life but
their work not only or even principally because of their love of
the work but due to the shape of the economy and the conditions
of their unemployment within it. Something is out of kilter.

- samantha

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Fri Oct 12 2001 - 14:39:42 MDT