By studying the general composition of organisms and comparing them to past fossils, scientist Charles Darwin conceived the theory of evolution, which states that organisms naturally develop and adapt. A major aspect of such adaptation is natural selection, or the genetic alterations and personal actions which enable the organism to subsist in the present atmosphere. From natural selection, Darwin then discerned that there existed only those organisms that evolved enough and were the most advanced – those who are fit to survive – and were separate from the obsolete or dying organisms who lack necessary resources to survive, or those who are unfit to survive. Hence, these organisms comprise the broad group of the "fittest" beings, or the "survival of the fittest".
It is by the Darwinian philosophy of the "survival of the fittest" that a capitalist is able to denounce the equality of wages in a socialist/communist society and justify them within the realm of the capitalist model. It is the wide contention of capitalists that, because all humans are in fact not equal in capability, the "subordinates" (or rather, those who are deemed "subordinates") of the socioeconomic capitalist system are not deserving of the common luxuries of the bourgeois.
"Survival of the fittest" is applicable to the capitalist system because such a system simulates primitive life relations. While this doesn't reflect man's genetic makeup and the changes made within it, it does indeed reflect his environment. That is, if man does not exhibit natural selection, he will be categorized by class as "unfit", or "subordinate". Like the weaker beings in primitive nature, these lower-classmen are mere fodder for those who are "fit". The terms poor ("unfit", "subordinate") and rich ("superior"), are manifested with the use of a monetary unit which ultimately substitutes and signifies capitalism from basic survival.
It is a universal truth that the capabilities of humans differ widely, some people possessing greater resources in physical or mental powers than others. With physical and mental independence, man is autonomous, significant and separate from all other men in these personal aspects. One cannot accurately categorize other men under a general pretense due to the fact that each man is in fact independent (physically and mentally) from all others. Man's interdependence in society will be discussed further on.
In the law of primitive human existence, i.e. survival, the personal physical and mental capacities are the determining factors of life – those who are not capable of living are subject to death. It is with the development of humans – the development of conscience, knowledge, overall mind, etc. – that man is able to and has effectively eluded such primitive life relations, or the "survival of the fittest", within his own species.
In other words, the human race does not intrinsically adhere to Darwinian laws of nature when he is subject to the capitalist socioeconomic system. Extrinsically, the human race coincides with the laws of nature (such as a participant of the food chain, etc.). Man's irrelevance to the Darwinian philosophy is achieved by the fact that the current economy nullifies any possibility of the "survival of the fittest"; the economic powers and capitalist governments who influence the economy exhibit half-hearted efforts to quell poverty (the group of the alleged "unfit") with policies such as welfare and institutions to implement these policies.
In all truth, the idea of Darwin's law can only apply to the radical capitalist systems of libertarianism, or laissez-faire capitalism, where government is limited or nonexistent and everything, or most things, exist within the private sector. The masses will not usually allow such drastic capitalism to occur, the proletariat and petty bourgeois fully knowing or sensing that such a measure would deteriorate lower-class living and magnify class gaps.
That being said, this circumstance (the absence of "survival of the fittest" in common human life) dually affects the independence of man. As man has placed himself above the "survival of the fittest", it is thus a fallacy to believe that any participant in the capitalist system should be at all "subordinate," or actually worthy of less money (man viewed as a commodity), or possessing less money. The issue arises when the idea of primitive competition that capitalists so arrogantly cling to is disproved by human development. Because of the above mentioned facts, one can conclude that the economy and society are not "natural," so to speak, due to the idea of humanity – or, better put, morality – allotted to the less fortunate throughout the world.
That is, by the aiding of "subordinates" abroad by capitalist institutions, those institutions are likewise forfeiting their right to argue in favor of "survival" and of being "the fittest." That being, capitalism indeed cannot exist without its often neglected "subordinates", and also that nurturing others (in this instance, the lower-class) is merely a hospitable human instinct, since corrupted by petty ideals of selfishness and a sense of being higher than any other human. Both of these characteristics are hallmarks of capitalism.
It is then easier to distinguish why there are massive class gaps: specifically here, economic gaps between the bourgeois and the proletariat and peasantry.
If class is created due to the concept of man's basic survival, it must then be inherent of the establishment that claims such standards are true: capitalism.
This of course is not meant to imply that human skills naturally differ. It is instead signifying that some believe that they actually become better than all other men and are hence entitled to better than average conditions, as they self-proclaim themselves superior. Such self-proclamation only has material value and recognition from others when there is an organization to uphold it. The fact that none can defy the fundamental truth that on the most basic level, are humans are equal in that they are of the same species, will be discussed further on.
The entire premise of capitalism is supposed to allow the "best man for the job", a distorted sort of meritocracy where participants are supposed to excel according to their work input. Capitalism is said to offer mass opportunity, a devious word that has helped to coin the phrase "the land of opportunity" as it pertains to America. Capitalist opportunity is meant to signify the chance to graduate, so to speak, to higher classes, ultimately that of the bourgeoisie. This is meant to be done via personal skill and usefulness to a subjugator (an employer), or the implementation of the free-market (the idea that labor is sold).
One must consider, however, how much opportunity is in fact involved in capitalism.
The lower-class – by all means the major class in the world – is already at a disadvantage when considering class; they are the individuals who compose the lowest economic spectrum. Though it is the contention of capitalists to argue that the participants of the lower class are able to advance, or graduate, to a higher class, such a claim is contradicted by the capitalists themselves, who systematically undermine the proletariat and peasantry with economic hegemony.
That being, once born in the lower-class, one is almost inevitably bound to it for life, save few exceptions in this pattern. Capitalistic employers (the bourgeois) implement such laborer sabotage by stealing a lower-classman's surplus labor (see the Exploitation chapter), denying him certain rights (e.g. union rights), and essentially isolating and segregating their employees into the single, low-wage class.
The only reason why the lower class accepts the hegemony of the employers is because of their (the employers') position in capitalism, i.e. their job of ordering the laborers around is merely that sent into capitalism's hierarchy of class and consequential positions. In an area with capitalism, the largest presence of job-opportunity is allotted to the private sector, in part because of the laborer's ignorance concerning economic equality, fair wages, public organizations (unions), etc., and also in part because of capitalistic regulations on such factors (determined by government or business).
While capitalists ignorantly advocate that human will alone can defy class-economics, they slander de facto circumstance with the nonexistent ideal of capitalist opportunity. The poor have lesser education, live in a more hostile environment than their other class counterparts, have less money, and overall are subject to miniscule expectations and a decreased willingness to graduate (concerning class) because of the atmosphere in which they live.
The lower-class is constantly demonized by business imposition that advertises itself the most in a consumerist society. Awareness is decreased as a by-product of capitalist situation, and the bourgeoisie exploit this pre-determined trend in a systematic action.
Thus, the lower-class has little opportunity to succeed in capitalism.
The middle-class, while having more opportunities in education and having more wealth, indeed are the potentials for the position of the bourgeois, the ultimate employers, or more likely will become part the petty-bourgeois, employees that – while higher than the lower-class – are still subject to the tidings of an employer (i.e. they receive wages).
The opportunity of the middle-class is exceedingly elevated compared to that of the laboring class, as the middle-class have higher expectations for living, have a better education, have more money, live in a more stabilized environment, and have a better kindled initiative. The middle-class is more likely to transcend classes than the lower-class.
And at the height of economic class is the bourgeoisie, who – though they may have graduated from the middle-class – bear their posterity in an environment completely separated from and distinguished as higher than the lower-class. The bourgeois are subject to ridiculous amounts of money, much of which is inherited, and have the greatest opportunity for education, etc., and are essentially socially geared toward playing the economic role of the employer.
One must ask himself, how can opportunity exist when there is no metric, no known scale other than the generalized class, to measure it upon? How can capitalist opportunity indeed exist when considering all of the economic and social impediments on the lower spectrum of society, and all of the one-sided advantages of those in the higher classes?
The fact of the matter is, opportunity does not exist within capitalism, because in spite of the calumny that capitalist advocates proclaim, classes downright signify the absence of human skill in society as it pertains to economic status, i.e., individual skill at any certain trade is pre-determined by class, which reflects environment. There is no true opportunity in a society that generalizes skill as well as systematically and purposely limits skill in order to prolong the society's existence. Capitalism is instead unfair act of imposition.
To recount main points: Fundamental equality among all humans, as well as the pan-human efforts to aid the socially "unfit" via the economy, has rendered "survival of the fittest" no more among the developed humans, and has thus defied any basis for the capitalist idea of superior and inferior human (as determined by money) as it pertains to the capitalist system. The fallacy of economically fittest affects the decayed notion of capitalist opportunity in that it proves classes do exist according to monetary worth among generalized groups of humans (such as the lower-class have lower wages). From here we can also conclude that the "survival of the fittest" definitely doesn't internally apply to humans because of the lack of a fair scale to measure skill, when there are so many economic, social, and political hurdles for the lower-classes to overcome.