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Fair society

On Mon, 5 Oct 1998, Ritu Ko wrote:

> With regard to Ash's ruminations over the 
> ordering of a fair society, I agree that the establishment of one is 
> necessary.  As Ash rightly pointed out, if its members do not perceive 
> the society as fair it loses their allegiance. 

In all parts of the world, I have head that 'others' are exploiting them.
These days an ad is running in the USA on TV every day: "The Global treaty
on green house gases will not work because developing countries are not
forced to cut down their emissions." Then, the greatest fear of many USA
and other citizens is that those teeming crawling masses from developing
countries should be kept out: the fear of population is MUCH higher in the
west than it is in India. 

In India and other developing nations we hear : the USA is exploiting us. 

What is fair is not known to any of us. From Aristotle downward, this
thing has been debated, without any resolution. Let us not waste too much
time on it. We must study it of course, but not too much.

Fairness - to ALL - by any defnition, of Nozik or anyone else, is not
achievable. Only thing achievable: freedom to interact without violence
and without recourse to coercion. That is called Pareto optimality.
Freedom to exchange, freedom to bargain, freedom to debate. Fairness is
WHATEVER results from that interaction. That is perhaps the only
definition that will be ultimately accepted, because it is the only one
that we can mutually work toward. Wherever PO fails, we can think about
putting in institutions to make it as fair as possible, e.g., in the
case of monopolistic practices. 

But crying over the other person's number of children is a futile thing.
Do not waste energy on delimitation, either, or in the number of states
that we need. That was not the cause of India's failures, and will be a
small issue once the correct economic policies are set into place. This is
the same as my views on reservation, by the way: that reservations have
not been the cause of India's poverty or corruption or what have you. Then
why break one's head over these things? Sure, we can discuss and debate,
but not really care (if you see what I mean?). Therefore do not bother to
include 'fairness' as a criterion in the debates. You will simply fail.
People see things in different light on each issue.

[This is an automatic signature file] I apologize for not using pleasantries and
for being so cryptic. As per doctor's advice, I have to keep typing to a minimum.
I am under medication and rest for tendinitis. Hope you will excuse.     Sanjeev

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