Just Deserts

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A philosophically unsubstantiated claim that people deserve their market competition outcome. Based on unsupportable premises that compelling people into market interactions is just and that the competitions themselves are just. Sometimes spelled "just desserts".


Capitalist success is meritocratic and thus deserved. (3 links)
The same way the scum floats to the top? Because libertarians usually define merit as success in capitalism, this begs the question. Meritocracy still has the problem of rule by a small clique. Positive feedback in markets makes success very much dependent on random initial conditions.
Desert Theory, Rehashed [More...]
The idea of "just deserts", so important to laissez-faire ideas, would not result from laissez-faire and in reality has significant problems..
Desert-Sacrifice-Utility Whack-a-Mole [More...]
Another common shifting of arguments to support capitalism is from desert justifications to sacrifice justifications to utility justifications. Each one can be shown to fail as a valid justification.
I get what you get in ten years, in two days [More...]
"Mankiw's differences with the bulk of the economics world are more about values than facts... But I somehow doubt that his opinion of "just deserts" will be able to win over a majority of Americans, even among the intellectual classes."
Inequality By Design: It Is Not Just Talent and Hard Work [More...]
"If the 1 percent are able to extract vast sums from the economy it is because we have structured the economy for this purpose. It could easily be structured differently, but the 1 percent and its defenders aren't interested in changing things."
Liberty, Desert and the Market: A Philosophical Study (book)
Rips Nozick a new one, based on dissertation under G. A. Cohen.
Meritocracy (6 links)
Originally coined by Michael Young in 1958, who critically defined it as a system where merit is equated with intelligence-plus-effort, its possessors are identified at an early age and selected for appropriate intensive education, and there is an obsession with quantification, test-scoring, and qualifications. The word "meritocratic" has also developed a broader definition, and may be used to refer to any government run by "a ruling or influential class of educated or able people." Widely used in Asian governments. Based on an assumption of Just Deserts.


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