Meritocracy tends to confuse a very practical sense of merit with a more abstract and moral one. An individual may deserve a high-paying job or admission to a selective college because they are productive or qualified. However, in a moral sense, individuals do not merit the skills and abilities they are born with, nor do they merit the environments they were born into that allowed them to develop those skills.
Making the case that economists should actually read Adam Smith
In Adam Smith’s classic book “The Wealth of Nations” he argues that the production of a country can be divided into three parts: the rent of land; the wages of labour; and the profits of stock.
Loneliness increases ones mortality risk by about as much as smoking, and twice as much as obesity. Loneliness has also been rising the U.S., doubling from 20 percent in the 1980s up to 40 percent today.
Market norms differ from social norms and our society has been moving in the direction of embracing market norms even in non-market arenas.