Sunday, November 20, 2011

The Semantics of Equity, (or, a rambling post full of non sequiturs)

Because we have managed to make it all confused.  The nature of that confusion cuts to the core of our country's schizophrenia.

n. pl. eq·ui·ties

1. The state, quality, or ideal of being just, impartial, and fair.
2. Something that is just, impartial, and fair.
3. Law
  • Justice applied in circumstances covered by law yet influenced by principles  of ethics and fairness.
  • A system of jurisprudence supplementing and serving to modify the rigor of common law.
  • An equitable right or claim.
  • Equity of redemption.
4. The residual value of a business or property beyond any mortgage thereon and liability therein.
  • The market value of securities less any debt incurred.
  • Common stock and preferred stock.
6. Funds provided to a business by the sale of stock.


You see, the same word that we use to define justice is the same word that we use to define the acquisition of wealth and status.

What one part, by far the larger part of our country wishes is the emphasis on definitions one and two.   (BTW, we will call these folks the "current losers") The have this odd idea thatthe system should  be just, impartial, and fair.   Our fellow losers own just a very small part of the country and there appears to be a concerted effort to relieve us of the remainder which lies in our hands.

To the country's current owners, this is a very bad dream.  The corporations and the wealthy have made a holy mission out of the extraction of wealth from the aforementioned "losers" and their whole hearted opposition to any idea of fairness in the tax code or the playing field brings them out in a cold sweat.

I really think the thing shifted into high gear with the good old standby, "the ownership economy".  This was a seismic shift in thought back there in the late 90's and early "oughts".  What you owned was your value.   Oh granted, there have always been those who felt that only those who owned something was deserving of the vote, but now we are getting back to it.

So the whole purpose of this hastily-wrought piece of fluff is a reminder that maybe, just maybe, we are primarily doomed as a Republic because we can't seem to differentiate between concept of fairness and the imperatives of "mine".

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