The U.S. and world economies would be better off if we were to do a financial reset every so often. In my recent adventures, I was playing in a beta or prerelease of a massive multiplayer online game that came out recently. I only mention it because the general population could learn many valuable lessons in social interactions, and ways to govern or limit certain actions.
One of the first things is to compare is how valuable in-game items and equipment are during and after a game has been released. In most betas all in-game items, equipment, levels, characters, etc. are all reset when the game is released. Due to this, the majority of players will actually give away rare items for little or no in-game money during a beta. People are more friendly, helpful, and less competitive. The entire social atmosphere is different during a beta versus when that same game is released and in-game items become permanent. This is not to say there are not competitive people during a beta or actions, it is human nature to compete. There does not even have to be a prize, we will compete over nothing more then bragging rights.
After a game has been released, the level of competition goes way up, and you will see an increase in cutthroat behavior between players. If you are aware enough and know how to listen, you will notice the similarities between real life and in the game. The gear you have on is just like the clothes you wear or house you live in. Unless you have the some of the latest greatest gear, someone will have something to say, and it will be used to rate of judge how good of a player you are. Mounts are just like cars or clothes and will be used as another criteria to rate a player. Most games will have achievements, which are still another way to judge a player. Every so often new gear and stuff will be released to keep people playing and chasing after virtual material. Much like real life there will be groups of people that care less about those things, but there are still groups that do care and take the game very seriously. I have been a part of both groups, and like everything, they both have their pluses and minuses. There is even a large percentage of fanboys or people who worship other players because they lack the skill required, and have to rely on the better players to get them gear.
This may come as a shock to you, but if I had to choose between the casuals and the elitists, I would have to choose the elitists. While I find the know-it-all attitude and better-then-you annoying, it just ends up being much easier to be competitive versus the general population. There are skilled casual players that if given the same gear could perform the same task better. It is just the general mindset with which elitists approach the game with, they take it very seriously. So why do I not group with the elites in real life then, you ask? Well first off, it is not as easy to get in with those groups in real life. Performance matters less and who you know matters more, which is how they want it so their children have an unfair advantage versus the rest of the population. Just like the elitists in a game, their performance will eventually suffer due to dependence and lack of true competition, and society suffers for it. I refuse to be a brown-noser, fanboy, or have dirty knees. I refuse to have to lie, cheat, or steal as well. Competition between humans should not be about these things as they degrade not enhance society. Second, a $1000+ suit may get me a job and the attention of the opposite sex, but it offers the same level of protection that a pair of $20 jeans and a T-shirt offers. Third, unlike a game where there is no real limit on the number of items, in reality we only have one Earth, and its resources are limited. Therefore, it is even harder to acquire material since most of it has already been claimed, and supposedly belongs to someone. I would have to take it from someone since we know that economic growth is a fallacy used to lead donkeys. I could kill a rich person, take their stuff, and if I were never caught, I would be a success. Why stop with one though, why not kill a couple more rich people and become a dictator or emperor? Unlike a game, I do not need an entire group to perform this task and would see others as competition to my power.
This is the problem with unchecked or unrestrained competition, and permanent ownership of materials. This is why I argue for a financial reset, it would benefit society and the human race. This can all be simulated in a virtual environment. This is why I do not like fanboys, prefer to surround myself with people that I know, and who will not blow smoke up my butt telling me lies. There will always be some things that I will need to hear from them, because I am not perfect, cannot know everything, and will be wrong from time to time. Without good feedback, I cannot make informed decisions about how my actions are affecting others. Without good competition, my skills will suffer from not being challenged, and not thinking. Let the fanboys fend for themselves, do you really need your butt kissed, or are they the only ones that will put up with you? Do not feel bad, no one wants to put up with me either.