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New Internationalist: The Equality Effect July 25, 2017

Posted by OromianEconomist in Uncategorized.
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The equality effect can appear magical. In more equal countries, human beings are generally happier and healthier; there is less crime, more creativity, more productivity, and – overall – higher real educational attainment. The evidence for the benefits of living more economically equitable lives is now so overwhelming that it will soon start to change politics and societies all over the world.

Greater equality is not sufficient for widespread happiness, but it is necessary. This is borne out by looking at statistics from all over the world – as well as by surveying long stretches of human history with the benefit of hindsight.

Equality means being afforded the same rights, dignity and freedoms as other people. These include the right to access resources, the dignity of being seen as able, and the freedom to choose what to make of your life on an equal footing with others. Believing that we all deserve such parity is very far from suggesting that we would all behave in the same way if we had more equal opportunities.

Although leftwing and green politicians tend to advocate greater equality more vocally, and rightwing and fascist ones tend to oppose it, equality is actually not the preserve of any political label. Great inequality has been sustained or increased under systems labelled as socialist and communist. Some free-market systems have seen equalities grow and the playing field become more level. Anarchistic systems can be either highly equitable or inequitable. Many such social systems existed in the past before the rule of law and the concept of property became widespread, and they were not all greatly equitable or inequitable. Click here to read more at  The New Internationalist

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