this article should probably be divided into two articles
I often have thought that it is morally objectionable to hire servants to do work you would normally do for yourself. However, this act itself is not an offense, considering that the servant may be more than happy to take on the work, for pay that would be more than they could earn in other opportunities. The danger, is the effect it will have on your soul. It will lead you to feel a sense of entitlement. From studies by Paul Piff: How Wealth Breeds NarcissismTED Talk: Does Money make you Mean.
I think you can practice equality, in that you don't think yourself better than someone else, and that you treat people with respect. So you could hire work, because you happen to have the money, but you treat the person well. You practice humility, knowing you can, and will succumb to entitlement (as studies have shown). Ideally, there wouldn't be such a disparity in income, but it does exist. It is an outcome of civilization, true to our nature, but exaggerated in its extent, as it is human nature to always want more.
A democratic government, one that actually works, can decide if things are fair or not. Let them vote to take from those they deem to have an unfair abundance. Let them be sufficiently educated, that in being poor, they don't believe that the rich should exist, because they plan to be rich as well. Not everyone has to have the same, but everyone should have enough. What is enough can be different for each person, but is it ok, for dozens of persons to have more wealth than the majority of the world? 12 Further reading: Why Income Inequality Threatens Democracy
Even if we evolved into a society, where no one has to work because everything is automated, wouldn't individuals still need a purpose? Would we seek higher intellectual pursuits? Would we seek debauchery? In Star Trek, Jean-Luc Picard states: “We work to better ourselves, and the rest of humanity”. Would there be those that are egoistic hedonists, or those that seek depotism?
The Paradox of Hedonism, states that pleasure cannot be attained by seeking pleasure directly, that pleasure is obtained as a side effect of another pursuit. In terms of evolutionary theory, “humans evolved through natural selection and follow genetic imperatives that seek to maximize reproduction, not happiness”. However, a sad being is unlikely to remain motivated to continue in their pursuit of living, and thus reproducing. If we have not evolved beyond our original programming, as paleolithic hunter gatherers, then we could maximize happiness by mimicking our original lifestyle, assuming that our primal motivations are intact.
However, evolutionary change can accelerate under stress (see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_10,000_Year_Explosion). This could have created a population, where there is a dispersity of human types, far greater than were originally present during the paleolithic period. So where there may have been a more mainstream way of living, to maximize happiness, now there may be many mutations that seek happiness in a different manner. As an example, some of these highly functioning mutations, may be considered mentally ill, although there is actually nothing wrong with them. Whatever maximizes reproduction, gets passed on. As another example, our descendents may be perfectly happy, living within concrete walls, never to know the joy of listening to the rustle of leaves in the wind, performing the majority of their communications via a wireless network.
There could just as well, be types that prosper and have no guilt from climbing to the top, on the backs of others, and by their wealth, reproduce more than others: http://grist.org/population/2011-03-03-are-rich-americans-having-more-kids. (wow, you can actually find just about anything, on the internet!!!) Alternatively, http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/article/by-the-numbers-childhood-poverty-in-the-u-s. Meaning babies will be crying themselves to sleep.
Well, then. I just can't even think anymore.
Someone I know wrote this poem:
Roy Herndon Smith
A child in a cage
without a mother, father,
brother or sister,
alone with thousands
of children in cages, shit
stinks, lice bite, child dies,
children die in shit,
alone with billions, we die
in cages alone.