The Tyranny of Fairness

What's fair to you is unfair to someone else.

Not only is the idea of fairness a matter of opinion, thus completely subjective, fairness is unnatural. Whether in the animal world or in our own civilizations, fairness; whatever we consider it to be must be imposed. Fairness in political systems manifests itself as programs such as racial and gender quotas or worse as forms of socialism or communism.

Obviously, we consider the opposite of fairness as corruption or oppression where one group or individual cheats or oppresses another. But who defines cheating or oppression? It too is subjective. What is fair to one person is unfairness to another. A power authority must impose its idea of fairness through regulation. For example, a multi-millionaire politician might claim that anyone else who makes over an arbitrary amount has "made enough money". Who gets to decide when you have enough money or have enough possessions or have enough children or enough of anything?


One thing that makes America unique to the entire world is our concept of equality of opportunity and especially the concept of equality of the individual. This is enshrined in the notion of "all are created equal". While this concept hasn't always been manifested throughout American history, we always return to it. But equality of opportunity and equality of the individual is different than the Democratic Party's constant refrain of group equality and things like Affirmative Action. Even American law is supposed to be blind to the differences in individuals and certainly not supposed to see a person merely as a part of a group. It is offensive and anti-American to group an individual by race, heritage, gender or ability or even disability. They should always be seen as an individual, not a voting block to be exploited by politicians.

While opportunity allows for all people to succeed IF they apply themselves, it does not guarantee success. It also does not artificially "level the playing field". A person's own limitations are only to be considered in the most generic way. For example, a radical application of fairness might be forcing tax payers to fund a wheel chair ramp all the way up to the peak of mount Denali. Starting down the road of making things "fair" will always end in such absurdities if the right tyrant gets power to impose fairness. This is another reason why things like unions and mobs and "democracy" are so foreign to the Republic of Americanism. Americanism is about the individual, not about groups or classes of people imposing upon the rights of the individual. This is also the reason our society always lauds the person who overcomes challenges and succeeds despite any real or perceived unfairness. If success was assured or common, we wouldn't champion success of the individual as much as we do.


The Golden Rule expressed by Jesus in the Bible and other religions is the law of reciprocity where you treat others as you want to be treated. It assumes that everyone wants to be treated kindly and with the most advantage. However the rule doesn't define how that treatment must be exhibited. It leaves it up to the individual to reciprocate in a manner that is subjectively equal. But even this is not natural. Humans, like all animals by nature will do first whatever is in their best interest for self-preservation and self-advancement. This is the reason we also laud kindness and charity when it is displayed. But once people are forced to be kind or charitable it not only loses its special uniqueness, it often becomes extortion and tyranny that requires some sort of power to enforce it.

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