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What kind of society do you prefer we had: a fully equal one or a winner/loser one?

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  • View Poll Results: Equal or winner/loser society?
    Equal society
    32.17%
    Winner/loser society
    67.83%

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    Many people think that it is deeply unfair that people can have a life of luxury simply from being handed it from birth (example the Royal Family) and yet people can struggle to support their families on an income below the median salary even though they are working a 65+ hour week.

    Possible solution to these are:

    1. Extra tax for those above the median salary which will be redistributed to those under the median salary.
    2. Enforcing a rule where everyone receives the same salary.
    3. 100% inheritance tax, so the government claims all the assets/money/estate from a dead rich person and distributes back to the poor people. This is to prevent people from inheriting wealth.
    4. Enforced quality control. Where everyone receives the same quality car, same quality bread, same quality table. This would mean for some the quality of their material possessions would go up, for some it would mean the opposite.
    etc

    What do you think? Do you think we should pursue an equal society, or is it right to have a winner/loser society (where some are extremely rich to the point of billions and where some are extremely poor to the point of negative money)?

    Imo, if you think the former, set an example to everyone and get rid of all your possessions and live a frugal life. Otherwise you are a hypocrite.
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    Well it depends really. To me it's not as clear cut as one or the other they both have their positives. Winner/loser would generate competition and improve products and would encourage people to succeed and be their best. But it would leave the vulnerable behind which to me is unacceptable. Where as the other option every one would be the same so there is no drive to succeed or innovate which would stifle human progress. So I believe a mixture of the two is necessary. I believe it would be worse for everyone involved if we choose the extremes of these two options as one would leave the vulnerable behind and the other would stop the drive to innovate.
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    (Original post by jordanosborn)
    Well it depends really. To me it's not as clear cut as one or the other they both have their positives. Winner/loser would generate competition and improve products and would encourage people to succeed and be their best. But it would leave the vulnerable behind which to me is unacceptable. Where as the other option every one would be the same so there is no drive to succeed or innovate which would stifle human progress. So I believe a mixture of the two is necessary. I believe it would be worse for everyone involved if we choose the extremes of these two options as one would leave the vulnerable behind and the other would stop the drive to innovate.
    How would we know if we have achieved a "mixture of the two"?
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    I don't think a fully equal society would be a very fair one.
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    No one actually wants a forced fully-equal society, it goes against basically every drive and instinct we have. Everyone loves competition one way or another and the possibility of improving your lot, gaining or achieving something (which is only appealing when it's "rare"), is all that keeps most people from stepping in front of a train.
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    (Original post by im so academic)
    How would we know if we have achieved a "mixture of the two"?
    Well I believe one that could allow anyone to succeed regardless of the family/situation they were born into. I think we would also have to make sure that the poorest in society are given support to make sure they aren't living in poverty.
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    (Original post by RobertWhite)
    I don't think a fully equal society would be a very fair one.
    It's worrying that many people use the terms "fair" and "equal" interchangeably when they're not.

    (Original post by NB_ide)
    No one actually wants a forced fully-equal society, it goes against basically every drive and instinct we have. Everyone loves competition one way or another and the possibility of improving your lot, gaining or achieving something (which is only appealing when it's "rare"), is all that keeps most people from stepping in front of a train.
    That would mean that inevitably there will always be people living on the streets and people living in mansions. Is this the reality you would like to accept? Some people don't want to.
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    (Original post by jordanosborn)
    Well I believe one that could allow anyone to succeed regardless of the family/situation they were born into. I think we would also have to make sure that the poorest in society are given support to make sure they aren't living in poverty.
    Define "support". Do you mean giving them enough money that should pay for essentials? This leads us to two issues:

    1. It means that you can live knowing the very fact that the government will be paying for everyone you need to survive. Many people would be very happy with this reality.
    2. What if they waste it on drink, drugs and the like? Even the government can't protect its own people from their own self-destructing activities.
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    (Original post by im so academic)
    That would mean that inevitably there will always be people living on the streets and people living in mansions. Is this the reality you would like to accept?
    Yea, pretty much.

    Some people don't want to.
    The alternative is much worse for most people to accept, psychologically. Like I said, we might as well all just kill ourselves if all avenues of progression, gain or achievement are closed to us. And they would have to be, for everyone to be "equal" or whatever.
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    Communism vs capitalism?
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    (Original post by NB_ide)
    Yea, pretty much.



    The alternative is much worse for most people to accept, psychologically. Like I said, we might as well all just kill ourselves if all avenues of progression, gain or achievement are closed to us. And they would have to be, for everyone to be "equal" or whatever.
    The fact that so many people have tried to enforce equality and failed shows that it will never ever work. Besides, no one will willingly want to have equality in society. I don't see those preaching about equality giving up their iPods. :rolleyes:
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    Winner/loser society, because I don't want to live in North Korea.

    (Original post by IAmTheKing)
    Communism vs capitalism?
    China still has a winner/loser society.
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    (Original post by im so academic)
    Define "support". Do you mean giving them enough money that should pay for essentials? This leads us to two issues:

    1. It means that you can live knowing the very fact that the government will be paying for everyone you need to survive. Many people would be very happy with this reality.
    2. What if they waste it on drink, drugs and the like? Even the government can't protect its own people from their own self-destructing activities.
    By support I mean by making sure everyone can have the essentials. Food, accommodation etc. Obviously I don't want the government to pay everybody only the ones that cannot support themselves such as people who cannot find a job or their current pay packet is not sufficient to feed and house them and their family.

    Well I think you could get around this by giving out vouchers etc. That are in the persons name and they could only redeem them for the product they are intended for.
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    (Original post by No Man)
    Winner/loser society, because I don't want to live in North Korea.



    China still has a winner/loser society.
    I mean communism in its purest form.
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    (Original post by jordanosborn)
    By support I mean by making sure everyone can have the essentials. Food, accommodation etc. Obviously I don't want the government to pay everybody only the ones that cannot support themselves such as people who cannot find a job or their current pay packet is not sufficient to feed and house them and their family.

    Well I think you could get around this by giving out vouchers etc. That are in the persons name and they could only redeem them for the product they are intended for.
    That would mean people won't bother working of the government will pay for the essentials.
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    (Original post by im so academic)
    Define "support". Do you mean giving them enough money that should pay for essentials? This leads us to two issues:

    1. It means that you can live knowing the very fact that the government will be paying for everyone you need to survive. Many people would be very happy with this reality.
    2. What if they waste it on drink, drugs and the like? Even the government can't protect its own people from their own self-destructing activities.
    If you are suggesting that many people would be unhappy for the government to pay to keep people alive i'd hate to meet the company you keep.
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    (Original post by im so academic)
    That would mean people won't bother working of the government will pay for the essentials.
    No I didn't say will not I said Can not. By this I mean people who physically can't do a job. Or people who can't find a job. I think to make sure people don't do that is making it compulsory to attend a job centre every month and if a job comes up and they have been long term unemployed say 6 months they are required to take it or the payments will stop.
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    where has communism (in its pure form) ever worked?

    i definitely prefer win/lose. because you just have to work hard to be a winner. a 'fully equal' society is only good for those who would lose in the win/lose society.
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    (Original post by RobertWhite)
    I don't think a fully equal society would be a very fair one.
    Depends on your notion of 'fair'. In my view, fair would be a society where one puts in what they can give and get outs what they need. A society where you work for the benefit of others, for solidarity, rather than ego.
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    (Original post by canŵio)
    where has communism (in its pure form) ever worked?

    i definitely prefer win/lose. because you just have to work hard to be a winner. a 'fully equal' society is only good for those who would lose in the win/lose society.
    I didn't say it has ever worked, I was merely mentioning that this entire discussion is basically communism vs capitalism. Which it is.

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Updated: August 29, 2012
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