One of the realizations I had, growing up in a leftist state and breaking the brainwashing in college — quite the opposite of how it typically goes — is that the tenet of leftism that is most appealing to the more sympathetic can be expressed as such: weakness is the new strength.
Back when I subscribed to leftism, it was for simple reasons. Leftists looked out for the destitute; otherwise they would starve, right? Leftists stuck up for people who were discriminated against; I believed that was happening at the time. Leftism is the weak standing together to not be trampled by the strong. Right?
Well, leftism has had its way. It is now the establishment. What have the results been?
- Attacking the wealthy.
- Racism against whites.
- Sexism against men.
- Tearing down anyone with merit.
What’s the common thread here?
Poverty is the New Wealth
The leftist take on poverty and wealth is central. It is the original Marxist class struggle, after all. At the heart of it lies the fixed pie fallacy, the notion that trade is a zero-sum game. That is, the winners gain what the losers lost; in every trade, there must be a winner and a loser.
The notion of intrinsic value forms the foundation of this fallacy — that, by some grand central appraiser, every commodity has a certain value, and it is the same for everyone. This is manifestly false: a gem is much more valuable in the hands of a jeweler than in mine; a computer is much more valuable in my hands than a jeweler’s. This difference is due to the different skills we have each acquired, the connections we have, and a myriad other factors. The key point is that I can trade a gem to a jeweler for a laptop, and we can both walk away winners, having profited. We call this subjective valuation. Every person values commodities differently, and as such assigns different prices to them. There is no universal price to short someone on.
An immediate corollary to subjective valuation is that wealth is not fixed. The motion of goods into the hands most fit to use them in the production of something greater is a form of wealth. In the trade above, both I and the jeweler profit to the extent that the goods have been placed into more capable hands. That there didn’t have to be a loser meant that, in the aggregate, our microcosm of the economy has experienced an increase in total wealth. Wealth was created.
So, then, what’s the big problem with some people being richer? Is it of any harm to you that, having a home, bath, food, clothing, and other needs fulfilled, someone else has more? We have established that wealth can be created — that it need not be siphoned from another. Is this not just weaponized envy?
The original desire to ensure that the poor don’t die on the streets, through a key nugget of economic ignorance, has become a hostility to many innocent people who created their wealth by improving the world around them. Poverty has become the new wealth in that, in the leftist world, the poor would occupy a position of state-granted privilege: the wealthy are robbed so that the poor don’t have to adapt.
Brown is the New White
What was the old allegation? That whites, occupying high positions as managers, owners, investors in companies are racially bigoted and turn down qualified employees over their race. Never seen it happen. What actually happens?
I worked at an early-stage startup with leftist founders. When we reached a magic single-digit number of employees, the founders knew it was time to start going out of their way to hire women and minorities. This was the state-decreed number of employees at which the business becomes subject to the equal opportunity and discrimination laws. They knew better than to say it out loud, but all the candidates coming in to be interviewed from then on were either white women or minority men.
Is this equal opportunity, or is it the wrong-headed attempt to equalize previous alleged discrimination by discriminating in tho opposite direction? Equal opportunity is hiring based on merit. What has happened instead is that minorities have been placed, by state decree, into the privileged position whites allegedly held only informally.
Weakness is the New Strength
This pattern of “solving inequality” by inverting the stack, is deleterious to society, economy, and individual alike. We strive to become better only so long as we have incentive to do so, and this antipattern threatens to destroy those very incentives by redistributing one’s reward to others who did nothing to earn it. To follow this to its logical conclusion will, without doubt, make the best members of society go on strike.
Tearing down the strong so that they don’t threaten the weak is a fool’s errand. Strong members of another society will merely invade and rule over the weakling society created as such. In the past, we celebrated our strong men for literally repelling marauders; today, the clash is more abstract: a matter of our viability in the global economy. America will fall if this continues.
Inequality is the carrot we chase when we create things that benefit society. Inequality is society’s reward mechanism for contributing to it. We make our best unequal to others — we make them wealthier, more popular, more well-recognized. Society also calls on those who have served it well before to serve again, which creates an increasing concentration of wealth at the very top. This is frequently lamented, but no more. Wealth and greatness are things to celebrate and aspire to, not lament and battle.
Celebrate your best: the wealthy, the influential, the intelligent, insightful, the hard-working. Celebrate them now, and if you feel you’re not celebrated enough, then improve yourself so that you are.
In the great gamble that is life, there must be an up-side. Leftism wants to sell you a guarantee that you’ll never starve, but the price is that you’ll never be rich. I give the bird to that offer. No guarantee is worth compromising one’s unbounded potential.
Then, it is imperative that Silicon Valley, the fifth column in the tech industry that threatens to sink not only this most lucrative industry but America itself, must be supplanted. Disrupt SV now.