Davki prejšnjih generacij determinirajo vaš današnji uspeh

Nekaj refleksij ob branju knjige Roberta H. Franka “Success and Luck: Good Fortune and the Myth of Meritocracy” (2016).

Ste kdaj pomislili na to, koliko je sreča vplivala na to, da ste danes to, kar ste? Večina ljudi ima na uspeh črno-bel pogled: nekdo je uspel, ker je bil talentiran in ker je vložil veliko napora, da je ta talent tudi izkoristil, luzerji pa so luzerji, ker so leni in/ali neumni. Pri tem pa večina seveda spregleda faktor sreče, brez katere uspeha ne bi bilo. Za uspeh je potrebna vsaj trojna sreča. Prvič, ob tem, da ste imeli srečo, da ste se rodili zdrav, močan in intelektualno sposoben in v pravo družino, je – drugič – ključna sreča roditi se v pravem okolju (v pravi državi z ustreznim, varnim in stimulativnim okoljem) in – tretjič – priti na trg dela v ravno pravem času, ki vaše specifične sposobnosti prav takrat potrebuje in primerno vrednoti. Če vam zmanjka sreče le pri eni izmed treh “sreč”, ne bo nič z vašim uspehom. Potem pa je tukaj še faktor naključja, ki vam kljub trojni sreči lahko prepreči uspešno življenje.

Toda ste kdaj pomislili, koliko je k “drugi sreči” (pravo okolje) pripomogla prava politika države, kjer ste bili rojeni? Ste kdaj pomislili na to, koliko so k stimulativnemu okolju prispevale prave razvojne odločitve preteklih vlad? Ste kdaj pomislili, koliko so na uspeh teh preteklih razvojnih politik vplivali davki, ki so jih plačali naši predhodniki, da so pretekle vlade lahko izgradile infrastrukturo, šolski in zdravstveni sistem, socialno varnost in osebno varnost? Ste kdaj pomislili na to, da vaš uspeh dolgujete predhodnim generacijam, ki so vam – s plačevanjem davkov – pripravile okolje, v katerem ste lahko uresničili svoj potencial?

Kot je nekoč rekel Warren Buffet:

Someone is sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.

Senatorka Elizabeth Warren je v kampanji leta 2012 opozorila občinstvo, da uspeh nikogar ni prišel izolirano od okolja, v katerem živi in dela in da bi se vsakdo moral zavedati, da so mu uspeh omogočili predhodniki in da mora prispevati družbi za uspeh naslednjih generacij. Lepše ne bi znal povedati njenega sporočila:

There is nobody in this country who got rich on his own. You built a factory out there, good for you…. You moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for. You hired workers the rest of us paid to educate. You were safe in your factory because of police and firefighters that the rest of us paid for…. You built a factory and it turned into a great idea, God bless—keep a big hunk of it. But part of the underlying social contract is that you take part of that and pay it forward for the next kid who comes along.

Vir: Roberta H. Frank, “Success and Luck: Good Fortune and the Myth of Meritocracy

Warren Buffet je pred tremi leti spregovoril o tem, zakaj je postal progresivec, zakaj je demokrat in zakaj se zavzema za več enakosti. Ker je življenje loterija. Ali natančneje, ker preden se rodiš, ne veš, katero karto boš potegnil. Boš ženska ali moški, inteligenten ali manj inteligenten, bel ali črn, zdrav ali invaliden, rojen v Afriki ali Evropi… Če bi pred rojstvom lahko izbiral svet, v katerega bi se rad rodil, bi si izbral tistega, ki ti omogoča največjo verjetnost, da ti bo v življenju šlo dobro. To pa je svet večje enakosti, kjer boš, tudi če nisi imel sreče “pri žrebu”, imel več možnosti za enake štartne pogoje ali da bo socialna država poskrbela zate, če ti iz objektivnih razlogov ne boš tega sposoben.

My political views were formed by this process.  Just imagine that it is 24 hours before you are born. A genie comes and says to you in the womb, “You look like an extraordinarily responsible, intelligent, potential human being. [You’re] going to emerge in 24 hours and it is an enormous responsibility I am going to assign to you — determination of the political, economic and social system into which you are going to emerge. You set the rules, any political system, democracy, parliamentary, anything you wish — you can set the economic structure, communistic, capitalistic, set anything in motion and I guarantee you that when you emerge this world will exist for you, your children and grandchildren.

What’s the catch? One catch — just before you emerge you have to go through a huge bucket with 7 billion slips, one for each human. Dip your hand in and that is what you get — you could be born intelligent or not intelligent, born healthy or disabled, born black or white, born in the US or in Bangladesh, etc. You have no idea which slip you will get. Not knowing which slip you are going to get, how would you design the world? Do you want men to push around females? It’s a 50/50 chance you get female. If you think about the political world, you want a system that gets what people want. You want more and more output because you’ll have more wealth to share around.

The US is a great system, turns out $50,000 GDP per capita, 6 times the amount when I was born in just one lifetime. But not knowing what slip you get, you want a system that once it produces output, you don’t want anyone to be left behind. You want to incentivize the top performers, don’t want equality in results, but do want something that those who get the bad tickets still have a decent life. You also don’t want fear in people’s minds — fear of lack of money in old age, fear of cost of health care.  I call this the “Ovarian Lottery.”

My sisters didn’t get the same ticket. Expectations for them were that they would marry well, or if they work, would work as a nurse, teacher, etc. If you are designing the world knowing 50/50 male or female, you don’t want this type of world for women — you could get female. Design your world this way; this should be your philosophy. I look at Forbes 400, look at their figures and see how it’s gone up in the last 30 years. Americans at the bottom are also improving, and that is great, but we don’t want that degree of inequality. Only governments can correct that. Right way to look at it is the standpoint of how you would view the world if you didn’t know who you would be. If you’re not willing to gamble with your slip out of 100 random slips, you are lucky! The top 1% of 7 billion people. Everyone is wired differently. You can’t say you do everything yourself. We all have teachers, and people before us who led us to where we are. We can’t let people fall too far behind.

Vir: Warren Buffet, Business Insider

One response

  1. Meni je recimo zanimivo da Hans-Werner Sinn socialno državo razume kot neke vrste zavarovalnico za potomce, ki nimajo takšne sreče kot njihovi starši.

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