Fair Is a Four Letter Word

Posted: Dec 21, 2011 12:01 AM

“It’s not fair” is one of the first things we say as children and one of the last things we say before we leave this world. In between, we call it: growing up.

It is time for the current occupants of the White House to grow up.

In Osawatomie, Kansas, President Obama gave the defining speech of his re-election campaign. The central theme: fairness. In that one speech, the President of the United States invoked the name of fairness fifteen times.

But, as any child will tell you, life is not fair. The children’s book, It’s Not Fair! which was written for four year-olds, spells it out clearly. “Why’d I get the smaller half (of the cookie)? Why don’t you yell at her? Why does my team always lose? Why can’t we have a pet giraffe? Because that’s life. And life can’t always go the way we want it to.”

A child who has spent less than four years on earth understands that life is not fair. A president who has spent less than four years in the White House does not understand that life is not fair.

First, what is “fairness?” According to President Obama, the “Occupy Wall Street” protesters, and many people on the political Left, it is supremely unfair when some people have more money than others (the 1% VS the 99%), when some people have more opportunities than others, and when a gap exists between rich “fat-cat” CEOs (Bourgeoisie) and the little guy (Proletariat).

Barack Obama’s stated mission is to close the “fairness gap” between the power-haves and the power have-nots. And, in taking up the fight to “restore fairness” as he put it, Barack Obama has joined a long line of leaders in human history who have tried to “restore fairness” in a world that is unfair by design.

So far – under the names of fairness, egalitarianism, socialism, and Communism – efforts to close the “fairness gap” between power-haves and power have-nots have killed more people than any other idea in human history: more than 100 million dead and counting.

Why? Because, as any four year-old can tell you: life is not fair. Which is a lesson that Barack Obama has not yet learned, as evidenced by his campaign speech on fairness.

This is what economist and philosopher Thomas Sowell calls “Stage One Thinking.” Stage One Thinking is when an Occupy Wall Street protester says she wants free school and a guaranteed income, and when a four year-old child says “I want a cookie.” There is no thought whatsoever given to what will happen next – Stage Two – or what must happen for someone to get “free” school, “free” money or a “free” cookie.

Here is what Stage Two looks like. For someone to get free school, free money or a free cookie – or to close any “unfair” gap between the haves and the have-nots – there must, by design, be an interceding hand that steps in to “restore fairness” by taking from the haves and giving to the have-nots. That is the definition of tyranny, the opposite of liberty, and it is the opposite of America’s founding principles.

In the case of the children’s book, It’s Not Fair!, there is one cookie and two four year-old siblings. No thought is given to the work their parents had to do to buy that cookie, or the “thousand points of Capitalism” that brought that cookie to market at a price their parents could afford. All these four year-olds knew was that they each wanted the cookie. “Me want.” That is Stage One Thinking.

Now, in the breaking of the cookie, one half wound up being bigger than the other. Unfair? Some of us might say “that’s how the cookie crumbles.” But in this book, the child with the smaller half filed a lawsuit in “The Circuit Court of Fairness” citing that “Sibling No. 1 clearly got the smaller half of the cookie,” resulting in “grievous emotional trauma and malnourishment.”

That is funny. What is not funny is the millions of human beings who have died in the failed pursuit of fairness, or the millions of suffering Americans who are now being conned by a president who is playing the “fairness card” to strengthen and perhaps extend his grip on power.

Life is not fair. Beware the politician who promises you otherwise.