Birthright is defined as a right, privilege, or possession, such as property, to which one is entitled by birth. In his article "Taking Luck Seriously" Matt Miller suggests that birthright results in the "inherited package of wealth, health, genes, looks, brains, talents and family." Approximately two-thirds {or more} of all wealth in the United States is inherited by birthright. In a recent study conducted at Ohio State University's Center for Human Resource Research, author Jay Zagorsky stated "Intelligence is not a factor for explaining wealth." Therefore, one may draw the conclusion that most business and political leaders are not intelligent. They did not earn their way into powerful positions but rather were manipulated into them because of birthright. This further begs the question: then why are they in charge? Why is it that our country is not run by the best and brightest? Does the merit system stop when one graduates from school? While intelligence is certainly not the only factor in determining who is most fit to lead our society, it is certainly a better measure than birthright. In over two hundred years the United States has failed at overcoming one of the biggest barriers to a just society. We refuse to find a way to limit the benefits of birthright and therefore make for a fairer {and better managed} society.

"A Decade of Executive Excess,'' the sixth annual survey of executive compensation by the Institute for Policy Studies and United for a Fair Economy, finds the ratio of top executive to factory worker pay has exploded this decade from 42 to 1 in 1980 to 419 to 1 last year. Why are we paying these people so much more if they don't have the intelligence and will to act in our best interest? What tangible proof is there that top executives contribute that much more to the successful attainment of corporate goals? Why aren't these executives {Enron} given longer prison terms than car thieves? If intelligence determined corporate leadership rather than birthright, the compensation ratio would be much lower because smart leaders would recognize it as the right thing to do whereas those that are there by birthright simply don't know any better {or care}. It is this ignorance perpetuated by birthright that is leading this country to collapse. Perhaps someday our society will be lead by intelligent people who see their own best interest as having promoted society's best interest.