Zyra .org.uk //// concepts //// Site Index
It's Not Fair!
I'm inclined to agree with you; IT'S NOT FAIR! The whole setup is NOT FAIR, and, what's more, it SHOULD be fair! It would be good if we could grab the reality by the scruff and sort it out so that it is FAIR! Nearly always, when you hear someone say "It's Not Fair!" they are referring to some situation in which they are the victim of the perceived unfairness. However, to sort this out so it actually ends up being truly fair, it has to be fair for everyone, otherwise it's still not fair.
This page at Zyra's website is obviously a sequel to the page Cheer Me Up which has done quite a lot of good at cheering people up, for years. Now this page, entitled "It's Not Fair" is to help people who have put into a search-box their plea, in the hopes of getting a result. So here it is, a set of helpful comments about the general problem that it's not fair, whatever it is.
I'd guess you are hoping for a magical solution which will solve the problem of it not being fair, and put right the situation, so as to make it fair, or at least rearrange things so it's not so unfair to YOU! Well it's a nice thought, and I have been known to intervene in situations to sort out a fair solution which everyone is happy with. However, I don't usually get involved in everyone's specific problem, because: 1. It would be expensive in time and effort and would require resources of the level of Father Christmas, and 2. It wouldn't be the best answer, because the next time something wasn't fair, it would be expected that the genie could be brought out of the bottle yet again, and it would lead to dependency, which is bad! Much better to apply general-purpose philosophical solutions where people can put them into use themselves, creating a culture of self-reliance. To that effect, the philosophy of Direct Drive helps, and it's available as shareware, and if you dare to put it into effect in your own life, you may be able to solve the present situation of it not being fair, and then probably go on to get rich. Good luck!
The exclamation "IT's NOT FAIR!" is often attributed to children. Grown-ups might agree, or more often not, about the actual unfairness that is alleged, but it's often difficult to provide a solution which is acceptable to all. For that it would have to go further than being Just, and it would require reconciliation of multiple ideas. Look, here's an example: Supposing you've been given some dinner, but your dinner is not quite as big as everyone else's. So, you say in a loud voice and with plenty of theatrical feeling "It's Not Fair!". It might feel at the time that a perfect solution would be for someone to agree with you and give you twice as big a dinner as everyone else. See, problem solved! Now the trouble with that is the problem that someone else might not think it's fair that you've got more dinner than them. So then they shout "It's Not Fair!". This is another reason why grown-ups are often unhappy about the whole "It's Not Fair!" business altogether. They often feel that there needs to be EQUALITY to sort it all out. However, that is impossible, because different people see things differently, and there actually needs to be difference to allow freedom and other aesthetic things to work. A much better solution with the dinner is to avoid sharing out the dinner, and instead let everyone have as much dinner as they want. It's known as an "as much as you can eat" dinner. Posh restaurants do very well on this, because most people can't eat as much as they believe they can, and yet after they've eaten as much as they want, they always feel happy with it, as they are full.
In most cases where it's not fair, authority is to blame. Whether this is the school, the government, or the reality and whatever scumbag is controlling it, it's typically the authority that's to blame for having set up a system that is... unfair! Now don't be too surprised if you find some people who try to avoid being seen as childish, who say "Life Isn't Fair", and they think that somehow makes it right, or justified, in some perverse way. I can tell you now: That doesn't excuse it. It might be a fact, an unfortunate fact, like death, tax, gravity, illness, and a few other worldly problems, but it is a very poor excuse being an apologist for it. Instead, it's much better to figure out where the unfairness is, and then to do something about it! Here's another example: People are burning up fossil fuels and causing CO2 to build up in the environment, and that tends to be associated with sea level rise. You might hear some religious people say "Humans caused climate change, and so now humans are going to suffer by being flooded". See, they try to make it sound fair because they like to believe their authority figure is justified. However, it's not fair! People in the developed (civilised, western) world, are burning up fossil fuels, and then it's Pacific islanders in places like Tuvalu who get flooded out! Yet, those people aren't burning up the fuel! So, it's not fair.
In some people's mythology, a long time ago there was a fellow called "The Devil", and he didn't like the way his boss was running things, and he said so. He might have said "It's Not Fair!". Clearly there was a difference of opinion, and The Devil ended up leaving and setting up his own place. He said "It's better to rule in Hell than to serve in Heaven". Of course it's up to you what you believe, but you shouldn't be victim to some authoritarian system that tries to force you into believing some oldfashioned system that you're not happy with. Religion is notoriously bad for this sort of thing and is, according to some people, the cause of most of the evil in the world. Monotheist religions were made-up as an allegory to justify earthly tyranny by despotic rulers. You can see this by the alleged behaviour of the deities in question in their own books. Well things have moved on since the days tyrants could rule and assume everyone would obey them. Modern day little-Hitlers, whatever type they be, had better tone down their attitude. As soon as you hear them say "Do as we tell you, because we tell you to!", you know they are wrong, and then it's a matter of setting up something more libertarian. Even if you're at a disadvantage initially, you can often win in the end. See the way the United States had a declaration of independence and ceased to be ruled over by the old empire. This and future secessions are a key feature of ongoing liberty. People who vote with their feet have a much better chance of fairness than those who put up with some supposed democracy. Also see Squeak Splosh!
There is a particular myth of unfairness where people see inequality as unfair. You sometimes see someone ranting on about the gap between rich and poor. Even with a moderate amount of intelligence you can see that the problem has nothing to do with how RICH some people are. That's irrelevant. The unfairness is purely that some people are POOR. You can't make poor people richer by making rich people poorer. That's Communism, and it doesn't work. Remember the Soviet Union? Anyway, poor people are better helped by teaching them to become rich, rather than by trying to share out the money. To see a clue about this, when people escaped from Nazi Germany, they escaped with their lives and not much else. Interestingly, a few years later, those who had been rich prior to their escape were rich again, whereas those who had been poor, were poor again. So this suggests being rich is something about the person themselves. If you change yourself so you are a rich person at heart, you may become rich. How's that for being FAIR?!
I believe that everyone can be rich. It may seem an odd idea, but it could happen. The amount of money that exists in the world is not fixed, but is ever increasing. Look at the fact of history that modern day people are much richer on average than people were a few hundred years ago. You can get a measure of this by how many hours the average person has to work to earn enough to buy a loaf of bread or a pint of drink. On that basis, the average person is much wealthier nowadays than the average person in bygone times.
So then you get the notion that it might be unfair that we are living in such an oldfashioned age when diversity isn't properly accepted everywhere in the world, and where much of the world is blighted by being ruled over by authoritarian establishments, and there's a lot of trouble going on, and the technology hasn't kept pace with its science-fiction expectations. People who are going to be born in a futuristic utopian world are much better in their quality of life than those who live in the bad old days. Is that fair? No, it's not fair. But you can turn that fact against it. If you think you should have been born in the future, start thinking up future ideas and future technology and putting it into effect now! Right now in the early Teens decade, there are a lot of holes in the world, and the trick is to find a loose thread in the rich tapestry of life and give it a good pull!
Then again, all this futuristic stuff might be good, but you've probably arrived here because of some minor unfairness, for example you are saying it's not fair that your parents wouldn't allow you to do something which you feel you should be allowed to do. Or maybe it's not fair that your brilliant work was badly assessed by some possibly biased and opinionated person in charge. Or it could be that it's unfair that just when you were having a party outdoors, it rained. Well, IT'S NOT FAIR! Wouldn't it be good if, with enough people shouting at the sky "It's Not Fair!", the whole setup could come crashing down? A vote of no confidence in the world, in reality itself. Probably worth a try, and there are some people who believe that the thing that runs the reality is sensitive to people's unhappiness about it, and if you read through the books then you can see it's failed before in various ways, and has behaved grossly unjustly, so it might yet be possible to make it give up! Then we could each have our own reality and run it the way we want.
With these minor unfairnesses, it's overkill to aim at overthrowing the entire reality. Often it's something that's a small problem that's unfair, and if you start to think about it, if you are clever enough and devious enough, you can subvert the local system enough to do something about it. You need to plan your solution and then put it into effect. For example, bullying, that's not fair! So, what you do is to cut off the bullies' satisfaction by ignoring them, and then you start to gather data about them and build up evidence, and then you wreak your revenge against your enemies when they are least expecting it. A well-planned attack can be quite devastating, and remember: bullies are inherently weak and that's why they bully other people, to try to compensate. Getting your REVENGE is an effective means of dealing with something that's unfair, but really it shouldn't be a first choice solution, and is sometimes only appropriate where the problem is severe, and where you've tried other methods first, such as good diplomacy, and where your opponent is arrogant, inflexible, etc.
There is another set of things about which you might say "It's Not Fair". Sometimes there's a rule where it seems unfair, and the problem is that it's not well explained. For example: "Do not walk over this field". Well, that's not fair, we should be allowed to walk over that field, you might say. Now this is often a case of it being not properly explained. If the sign had said "Do not walk over this field. Danger! Minefield!" you'd understand, and you'd not consider it unfair at all that someone had put up a sign. In fact you might even thank the people who put the sign up, as they'd saved you from losing most of the lower half of yourself. If there's a rule, there should be a good reason for it. However, with some rules, even when you question the people who set the rules up, they fail to come up with satisfactory explanations, and then you KNOW it's not fair. That's when you can start to consider taking action against those who set up the unfair rules.
There are some extreme cases of unfairness, and some of these are included in the page of Injustice. More generally, for example where a country's political system stinks, it sometimes gets a dedicated page, for example the problem of Tibet, Myanmar (Burma), and a few others. The Internet is a good way of exposing such examples of extreme unfairness, as it can't be controlled by the authorities. You can set up your own website and tell people about situations which you feel should be exposed as not fair.
The Devil "It's better to rule in Hell than to serve in Heaven" - for more about this sort of thing, you can get a free book, "Paradise Lost" by John Milton. It was written a long time ago, so you can get it free via Gutenberg as a downloadable text file.
Revenge. One of the most glorious books on the subject is "The Count of Monte Cristo" by Alexandre Dumas. Again, freely downloadable as a text file (in English or French) via Gutenberg. It's such a good story it's been made into a movie, several times. See Video Shops. The classic movie is also referenced in V for Vendetta, which also carries a strong theme of putting right that which is not fair, in particular overthrowing an oppressive government. V for Vendetta is also available from Video Shops even though the Establishment might want to ban it.
Religion. Choose your own beliefs. Try to avoid the servitude-based faiths. They are now becoming much discredited, for various reasons.
Death, income tax, etc. These are problems were are working on cracking. See tax havens and cryonics
Since this page was first written, some countries where It's Not Fair have overthrown their unfair governments. For example, Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, and to come: Bahrain, Syria, Yemen, and Saudi Arabia. And others! Wherever it's not fair, something needs to be done about it.
Another thing, Google is not fair. A long time ago it used to be a decent search engine but later, because of all the cheating, some kind of automated system was added which tried to do something about the problem, but punished honest websites instead. Shame!