Accented Philosophy

016. Meritocracy: Do we deserve our lives?

August 24, 2021 Ezechiel Thibaud and Andreas Matthias
Accented Philosophy
016. Meritocracy: Do we deserve our lives?
Show Notes

Meritocracy: Do we deserve our lives?

In this episode, Ezechiel and Andy discuss the idea that hard work (as well as laziness) eventually get their just rewards and that, therefore, people deserve the lives they have.  But is this true? Or do we all just rely on luck to achieve the positions in life that we have?

Join us for a weekly dose of Daily Philosophy!

Brought to you by
Music: Nightlife by Michael Kobrin, from:

00:00:24 What is meritocracy?
00:01:34 Problems of meritocracy
00:01:55 Meritocracy is not so different from elitist concepts
00:02:35 Absolute vs relative merit
00:04:51 The problem of access to positions of power
00:07:12 Michael Sandel, “The Tyranny of Merit.” Is merit just luck?
00:08:13 How important is luck for merit?
00:11:31 The perception of “deserving” one’s achievements
00:12:35 Is this only a debate about language use?
00:14:19 “Merit” talk shifts blame away from society and onto the individual
00:16:33 The value of work
00:18:24 Effort and result
00:21:34 Privilege, entitlement and moral obligation
00:25:24 Bill Gates and other successful people
00:26:24 Robert Frank (2016): Success and Luck
00:27:53 Should billionaires exist?
00:31:34 Is it wrong to be a billionaire?
00:35:24 Personal wealth and educational achievements
00:38:52 The value of Ivy League universities

Accented Philosophy - Every Tuesday (or thereabouts)