In the conquest of the other, the principle of civic order, that Hegel calls "the master/slave relationship," we have a model of what? An army? A government bureau? Durkheim's iron cages of the Taylorized worker? I/thou we reserve for peers? No, in my experience, as a worker, we reserve thou for those we serve in the First Class Cabin. I have known Trusted Advisors, the best of breed, for whom the highest Thou is a wealthy, even dynastic, client, the one whose interests are served assiduously. The one with whom an advisor identifies as a dog with his master. Is that Thou reciprocal? "Call me, Candy," says my boss and generous patron, she who rules us all, "no need to stand on formality, when you kneel." Since she is higher up than I, and knows more, is better connected, better looking, and is wiser, I am sure my following directions leads to a better result than my being a real person.
Effectiveness and efficiency are the mantra. What I notice, though, is that the hierarchy of masters and slave and slaves of slaves rises ever higher, and all but a very few get little more than vicarious satisfaction. I don't begrudge those I serve the feast, but I would enjoy it even more if we took turns. I guess in the old days, it worked that way. Once a year, or on special feast days, the King served the Fool, and the Whore said mass while the Bishop rioted with the Mayor's wife. Today, what would be the equivalent in an institution that has grown to scale? Well, I see it every day. I work there, handing out the towels. But when do I get a turn?