गुरुवार, 5 नवंबर 2015

Will science solve the problem of have-have not

For most of the time in the history there was huge difference between those who were sitting in upper strata of class hierarchy and those who were in lower strata.

In ancient Rome a person with money could afford cloths imported from India while a slave would have to live without even cloths required to cover his body. But the difference was not just in cloths. A rich could afford communication, horse carts, food, good wine and a lot such things which an ordinary being can't even think off.

Modern world is different. Poverty is all time low (not in absolute numbers but surely in terms of percentage). But along with it rich and suoer rich can afford a lot of things which is still dream for many. Still in developed countries being elite is becoming less and less fashionable. And here lies the real contradiction, societies with more rich has made it less fashionable to be elite and behave differently than ordinary citizens (compare it with Aristotle’s thought of giving citizenship rights to a small population). But why is this happening? Biggest threat to elitism is not those who have not what rich can afford. But it is growing middle class which has made it.

And middle class is doing it with the help of science and technology. Consider a society with a small or non-exiatant middle class. And an invention of something kind of modern washing machine suddenly pops out of the blue. Obviously only few lucky one could afford it, and it would be very fashionable to own one such machine. But with modern production assemblies and low costs a lot of people could afford that machine and now there would be nothing special about owing that machine. A rich person can still take solace in his mind that he could afford a higher version of that machine which other could not, but it would not be that fashionable as compared to only 2-3 people in city having such a machine.

Same is true for most of the domains of life. A rich could afford a business class flight ticket but still going to most of the places in the world is possible for many of the people and most people can easily afford intra-country journies.
Communication has reached to every one’s pocket. Just 200 years back, only super rich can send their messages to other person with incurring heavy costs. But its sounds so obvious now that we don't even consider it anything special. Eliticism gone at least in domain.

Cloths are more and more affordable to almost everyone. A rich can afford some specially designed cloths but there is nothing special even about that because mass production of designer clothes has made it possible that the big middle class would wear same clothes next month.

Having a personal transport vehicle is now possible for everyone in middle class strata. A rich can have an SUV but the exclusivity of having a personal vehicle has gone and with that the eliticism.

And this is going faster than we think. Today’s billaniors are wearing the same clothes and travelling is same kind of vehicles, having same food and talking the same language of science and democracy like billion or so those who belongs to middle class.

Probably science and technology created that class and would solve the problem of conflict of “haves” and “have nots” in a good way, i.e. making everyone’s better.

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