The Most Important Thing

A few years ago, your correspondent was in Denver on the way to the airport to return a rental car, when who should come up on the radio but past President of the Unites States William Jefferson “Bill” Clinton talking to an audience of true believers. Normally your correspondent would punch on past a Clinton speech because he holds all the attraction of a tooth canal, but something in the way he spoke caused your correspondent to pause. Clinton said, “Here is the most important political insight ever. I’m about to tell you the most important truth in the world. Be prepared because the next words out of my mouth will be the most important truth that you must always remember.”

Your correspondent thought to himself, “This doesn’t sound like something that’s true. This sounds more like something that Clinton wants to persuade the listener is true—wants us all to believe is true. I wonder what it is?”

Clinton said, “The most important thing is that everybody is equal.” (or words to that effect)

Now one’s immediate reaction might be, “That’s not true! Everybody has differences that make them different, unique, and unequal.”

But such a reaction would be ineffective in arguing with Clinton or one of his supporters. They key is to view the world through Clintons’s intellectual lens, and the phrase that best encapsulates his project is this, “From each according to their ability, to each according to their need.

While there that can be said about this dictum, there is only a single aspect to merit consideration for this argument: there is an inherent inequality between the able and needy, and this inequality is necessary for Clinton’s political project.

Inequality goes beyond the individual to include the geographic distribution of entire economic systems that are arranged in fractal, self-similar clumps, which are inherently unequal. Nobel economist Paul Krugman wrote about the uneven distribution of economic systems back before he became a professional advocate for ideological equality.

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