Life is not fair or equal

Life is not fair or equal, by David Leyonhjelm.

Every morning when we look in the bathroom mirror we are reminded that life is not fair or equal.

David Leyonhjelm

If I was a proselytiser for equality I would demand the bloke who sits behind me in the Senate give up his unfair share of hair. Derryn Hinch has far more than he will ever need and I have none. But then again, he may demand something he is lacking in return, and I value my fully-functioning liver. That’s the problem with inequality; we’re surrounded by it. And it’s fine political fodder.

We will hear a lot about inequality in coming months. Labor believes election victory can be achieved by waving the banner of inequality. Echoing the rhetoric of Bernie Sanders and Jeremy Corbyn, Bill Shorten recently claimed in a speech that rising inequality was the single biggest threat to Australia’s social cohesion and the economy.

Now I can’t help noticing how many people have hair, and sometimes it seems their numbers are growing, unlike my hair. But increasing economic inequality? That’s just not true. …

Some economic facts:

Among 28 OECD countries, Australia ranks eighth most equal based on the Gini coefficient of wealth, a well-accepted measure of inequality.

Australia also recently overtook Switzerland for having the highest median wealth in the world, according to Credit Suisse’s 8th Global Wealth Report. Median wealth in Australia — the wealth of the middle Australian if every one of us was lined up in a row according to our wealth — is about $270,000 after taking into account income, property assets, superannuation, debt and other liabilities. …

We should strive for equality of opportunity, not equality of outcome:

In Australia we admire those with a natural talent, in the fields of sport, the creative arts and entertainment. Few Australians resent a Miranda Kerr or Elle McPherson for being unfairly blessed at birth with the genetics that enabled them to become multi-millionaires as adults.

So I am determined not to resent the genetics that deemed my fulsome mop of hair in my twenties would desert me some three decades on. Instead, I will take my lead from Mr Aristotle, who pointed out that the worst form of inequality is to try to make unequal things equal.