Don’t Believe in Equality; Never Have; Never Will


The coronavirus has, and will continue, to massively change the way we work, the way we learn, and the way we relate to each other. It also has created an opportunity for the Regressive Movement (often referred to as the Progressive Movement) to install critical elements of its agenda to transform our culture indelibly and permanently. Under a number of banners the movement is marshalling its efforts and resources to once and for all embed total equality into our society. This process is driven by three key initiatives:

  1. To decrease individual choice (and remove its burden)
  2. To eliminate all pain and struggle (and substitute comfort in its place)
  3. To eradicate risk-taking (and replace it with guarantees)

All three of these initiatives can be subsumed under the mantra of Equality. And nothing concerns, nor scares me, as much as the political momentum behind the crusade to level the playing field, eliminate hierarchies, and promise certainty. I am not opposed to equality because its financially untenable; I would remain opposed if we had all the money available to fund every program ever devised, to make our lives easier. The bottom line is this: Equality creates mediocrity; and mediocrity causes death. I do not want to live in a culture in which my primary goal is to be like everyone else. I want to be better than everyone else. We are a competitive species and we like to win. We also know that sometimes we’ll lose, and those losses will teach us how to win the next time. In fact, for most of us, the losses have been more valuable experiences than the wins.

Our country and our culture were not built by people who had job security and pensions. They continually had choices to make – brutal, scary, and life-determining. Modern civilization has removed some of the drama from those choices, but none of the ultimate impact. I am often asked why so many people are attracted to socialism. The answer is not that complicated. Socialism (or any centralized system), removes the burden of choice, albeit at a high price. It’s a sad bargain: I’ll let you determine the direction of my life; and you promise to keep my life predictable and safe. The saddest paradox in human life is that we are infinitely adaptable, even when it leads to misery.

The primary catalyst for change is pain. And change is the currency that keeps life exciting and meaningful. Remove the pain, and stagnation sets in. The happiest and most successful people I’ve worked with, have the greatest tolerance for pain. The people who complain endlessly, who envy the most, and who are always waiting for good things to happen to them, have the greatest drive for comfort. The phrase – “Fat, dumb and happy” – is a misnomer. It should be – “Fat, dumb and unhappy.”

The scariest thing happening in our culture now, is the incessant attack on risk-takers. What the pandemic has brought to a head is our vulnerability and our tenuous grasp on life. And I’m not talking here, about our susceptibility to the virus. All the virus has done is highlight the risky nature of being alive. Study after study is now surfacing the fact that a myriad of everyday, common activities pose a greater threat to one’s mortality, than the virus. If you want to be truly safe, nowadays, don’t drive anywhere, don’t take your medications, don’t go to any kind of school, and by all means, don’t go to places where people are having fun.

We have built the most dynamic, stimulating, and meaningful culture in the history of the species, by challenging everything; by provoking the purveyors of established wisdom; and by putting everything at risk. I, for one, am not about to stop now.

Morrie Shechtman

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *