It’s not fair!

Observation 1: Whether we like it or not, life is not fair. I would argue that it is part of our job to make things fair insofar as practical, but we will never succeed.

Observation 2: The concept of fairness is purely subjective. It exists almost entirely inside of our heads, moreover the evaluation what fairness means is purely a matter of perspective. That is, fairness is almost always defined relative to something else. Fair compensation for example can be evaluated based upon contribution to a business, contribution to society, seniority, effort invested, the assumption that all people are equal, or some combination of these. The resulting compensation will be wildly different depending on the basis.

Observation 3: “It’s not fair,”  is invariably a statement of personal powerlessness.  Whenever we use it we reduce our perceived circle of influence. It’s okay on an occasional basis but not as a regular practice.  It’s even worse when we are saying that the world has been unfair to us. We may in fact get what we want in the short term, but longer term it is ineffective at best and self destructive at worst.

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