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100 Words On: Confusing Equal Opportunity with Equal Outcome

Like it or not, some Americans will always have to work harder than others to succeed. The economist Milton Friedman noted that the word “fair” isn’t in the Declaration of Independence, Constitution, or the Bill of Rights; those documents do, however, champion equal opportunity for anyone aspiring to achieve financial security. Even so, many people espouse — often unwittingly — the wide-eyed idealism of equal outcomes for all, which kills the incentive society depends on for ingenuity and efficient production.

The bottom line: While a free, merit-based society ensures societal inequalities will exist, it also offers virtually unlimited success potential — for everyone.

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