Has it ever seemed strange to you that men in positions of power are so often portrayed as babies, even, specifically, adult babies?

Well actually, the idea makes perfect phenomenological sense. Allow me to introduce you to Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel.

As Hegel puts in in the Slave-Master dialectic, the Slave and the Master are equally unable to achieve self-recognition. The Slave, because he [sic] is alienated from the fruit of his labour, which is taken from him by the Master, and the Master, because he [sic] did not make that which he consumes, and is therefore unable to recognise the inscription of his subjectivity onto the world which labour consists of.


All the luxuries which come with being in a position of wealth and power (drivers, cooks, bodyguards, personal assistants) are analogous to the wilful relinquishing of bodily autonomy which characterises adult babies.

So when men in positions of power are portrayed as babies, this is simply a metaphorical exposition of what it really means to exercise power, and, more to the point, to be a capitalist: It means undoing not only other people's personhood, but also your own.

@garfiald So like the master/slave dialectic where because men are in a position of power they cannot accept the validation of those that they oppress?

@garfiald i've always seen this as extension of "The Last Mile"

i have a someone who opens and answers all my mail.
Everyone's getting mail now, but can't afford that.

i have a driver who brings me places.
Everyone *needs* a car now to get from one place to another, and we'll call that freedom.

Something similar really struck me when I was in Kenya this summer (I live in the Netherlands). There is a huge wealth gap there, resulting in a lot of gated communities, checks before you're allowed in shopping centers and plenty of street crime.

No matter how rich you are, these things limit your freedom. Even the richest person can't buy the experience of sitting on a public square, outside a bar, having a drink. Getting lost in your own city without getting mugged.

It's not exactly the same thing as what you are saying, but it also highlights the fact that even the wealthy are worse-off in a society with a big wealth gap.

A more fair society is in everyones benefit.

@garfiald what is a personal assistent? Someone who provides a service to me only? Or also someone who provides the and service to other people? Like a guard of a gated community, or a cleaner who cleans several houses, a babysitter who serves several families, a clerk who manages several bank accounts...?

@garfiald Hegels critique is not only valid to people using personal assistants in this narrow definition IMHO. The general modern consumer is equally and adequately portrayed as a baby.
I do not understand where you draw the line and why.

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