RE: `capitalist' character values

From: Lee Corbin (
Date: Thu Jul 26 2001 - 02:15:50 MDT

Olga Bourlin writes

> I'm so sorry they aren't paying MD-PHds more than poor working people's
> wages these days.

It really would be best for all concerned to avoid personal references
like this. Surely, with practice, we can all learn to make our points
without venturing dangerously close to the ad hominem. Also, I know
that the temptation to sarcasm is strong---especially when one feels
outnumbered. But in that case, there is all the more reason to confine
oneself to careful argument.

> Then there are people who work but don't need to - like Bill Gates (but there are
> zounds of them, at less-extreme examples). Does Bill work harder than child-care
> workers ... or his own maids? Why this obscene disparity in wages?

In a society of millions, or hundreds of millions, some people's economic worth
to others (sometimes as in the case of movie stars or baseball players, millions
of others) will be vastly, vastly more than other's economic worth. Should
school teachers be paid more than movie stars? Who is to say? The answer is
not some committee that will force their decision on others, but people freely
choosing with their dollar-votes. Yes, sometimes the differences are obscene.

> This is all personal, I realize - but I feel lucky to be healthy, relatively
> intelligent, productive and, most important, to have the capacity to enjoy
> life. So what if some of my hard-earned money goes to lazy people, or blind
> people, or schizophrenic people?

That should be your choice. Not all people think or feel as you do. Why
should they be literally forced to yield up their money? This question,
often posed in the libertarian slogan "never initiate the use of force"
has been repeatedly mentioned on this forum. Of all the people here who
favor government action, only the person you were responding to above,
namely Rafal Smigrodzki, MD-Phd, has by coincidence said anything at all
about this maxim.


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