Elitist ruling classes
Other Names: Apparatchiks
Privileged classes of citizens
Misappropriation of machinery of government by elites
Incidence: During the era of feudalism, there were three elites: the church hierarchy, landed aristocracy/nobility, and royal families. For the general population, the elites represented security or tyranny, depending on one's position and perspective. As that system ended, an additional elite -- the business wealthy -- gained status and influence through trade and manufacture and have in part displaced the traditional elites. These elite groups compete for power, with different accommodations from time to time and place to place. Despite the rise of democratic institutions, it remains questionable whether the power of elites has diminished.
Claim: This results in a gigantic waste of both individual and social talents. When the state controls all the financial activities, most of the large industrial firms, nearly all the educational establishment as well as a major proportion of the media the accession to almost every post of responsibility, even relatively modest, depends on the power of the civil servants. That ensures that professionals will be diverted into less productive pursuits and the competent may be excluded. It favours the emergence of a pattern of administrative perks and privileges. There is both misallocation of the elites, and then by them.
Problem Type: F: Fuzzy exceptional problems
Date of last update 05.09.2002 – 00:00 CEST