Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira

 

 

The Egalitarian Refuses to Admire Anything Higher Than What

He Is Used to

 

 

 

 

Excerpt from a Saint of the Day, Tuesday, April 19, 1966

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 Hetty Green, was the richest woman in the world during the early 20th Century, but choose not spend her money or give it to charitable organizations. She chose instead to live a little better than the poor, hence she was dubbed the “Witch of Wall Street”.

There is another thing which is a stumbling block and causes many anti-egalitarian people to fail: Everyone is accustomed to consider that ‘the social class in which I was born is one in which man lives well. So for me, it would be a luxury, nonsense to want more than I have. For what? I am used to this, and if someone else likes something else, then he is a fool. Because my habits, which I acquired in my boyhood are the standard of human living.’

And the funny thing is that we find this in all walks of life. For example, I know a very rich lady who is a bit of a hillbilly. When you talk to her about French high couture, she says: “What gobbledygook! Look, there are so many cute dresses at the Clipper store on Main Street!  Why do we need French high couture!?” Because she was educated at Clipper level in spite of the money she has and she thinks that is good enough. Her standard is the world’s standard.

This same lady once said: “Food from Europe? Bah, European food is nothing! When I go to my farm and eat those chickens with that Brazilian abundance, that is what food is all about!  Nowhere in the world do they eat like they do in Brazil.” This is idiotic. She was raised eating chicken and rejoicing with chicken, so she thinks nothing else is needed: Chicken is her ceiling.

 

Other ladies with the same psychology are used to eating chicken only once a month. They say: “Why this whole chicken story? A good strong stew with lots of carrots, a thick sauce, potatoes, rice, cauliflower, butter and that makes only one dish. No need for chicken, fine sauce or caviar. That’s what’s tasty.”  From here it slides all the way down to bread and bananas: “This business of eating meat is silly. When you are tired, just take a big loaf of bread, put a large banana inside and eat healthily and it is over.”