Suppose we lived in ancient times, there were about 500 of us living together and life was pretty good. What would we accept in terms of wealth?
I think we would expect that we all had a very similar standard of living. The leader’s family would probably have a slightly higher standard of accommodation with some items and artefacts at their disposal. Consequently, these would be handed on to the next post holder. Anyone showing a particular skill in useful things like farming, crafts or medicine would be rewarded. The best warrior, the best hunter, the best fisher and the best builder would no doubt also be rewarded. If someone was brave enough to travel to another village and set up a system of trade, then they would be allowed to benefit from their efforts. On the other hand, anyone who didn’t have skill or expert knowledge would be given a job to do and given a share of the village produce. Some would have slightly more, gained through their own efforts, skill and intelligence. But the majority of the wealth would be shared by all those living together.
This is what I imagine. What I don’t imagine is that one person within our community would earn over 4000 times what the poorest person earned. I really don’t think we would accept it.
So why do we accept it now?