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March 20, 2006

A Report on Inequality

Hattersley on an upcoming report on inequality:

It begins with an analysis and goes on to draw conclusions from the facts. For too long we have fought against inequality and disadvantage as if huge swaths of society - identified by race, gender, disability or sexual proclivity - suffer identical levels of discrimination. In fact "in some instances the variation within the group is much more than the average difference with the rest of society".

Well, quite. This is why we should ignore the group differences and only consider the individual. Rather the basis of whatever is left of western civilization actually, that it is the individual that counts. Just as with our legal system, it may indeed be good for society as a whole that the occasional mugger tap dances from a lamp post, would certainly discourage many others. But we do not allow the interests of the group to over ride the interests of the individual in that manner.

The unfortunate conclusion though is that the entire structure of the discrimination industry in this country therefore needs to be abolished. The variation between women over wages and incomes is vastly greater than the variation between men and women, as is indeed the variation amongst men.

As the report is pointing to, but will of course not admit, that means that the entire structure of the debate, that women earn, on average, less than men, is irrelevant. We must concentrate on the the individual not the group.

March 20, 2006 in Politics | Permalink


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