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April 7, 2011

"Poverty is the normal condition of man"

Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man.
Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded --€” here and there, now and then --€” are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty. This is known as "bad luck"-- Robert Heinlein

Posted by Vanderleun at April 7, 2011 8:44 AM. This is an entry on the sideblog of American Digest: Check it out.

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Russell Kirk--
"Equality is the death of progress. Throughout history, progress of every sort has been produced by the desire for inequality. Without the possibility of inequality, a people continue on the dreary level of bare subsistence; granted inequality, the small minority of men of ability turn barbarism into civilization.

Man is not a laboring animal naturally: without especial incentive, he works as little as will enable him to sustain life.

Individual genius is a tremendous social force; and the talents of great men save the poor from sinking into barbarism.

Reduce great men, or merely men of energy and talent, to the boredom of equality, and you reduce the mass of men proportionately."

But this was already understood in the seventeenth century. Pascal--The principle of equality, which allows every man to arrive at everything, prevents all men from rapid advancement.

Posted by: james wilson at April 7, 2011 10:24 AM