Incentives matter, yea even unto death

The first and prime lesson of economics is that incentives matter - grasp that there are always opportunity costs and with those two you've got the basics of the subject nailed - and this extends even to the timing and manner of death

A bizarre trend is said to be afoot in villages bordering the Pilibhit Tiger Reserve (PTR). Authorities suspect local families are sending older members into the forest as tiger prey, and their bodies then relocated to fields, to feign attacks and claim lakhs in compensation from the government.

Villagers aren't entitled to compensation if their kin die in the reserve.

Depending upon how large the compensation is this could be bizarre or not. Put a sufficient number on the head of dead grannies anywhere and elderly women are going to be at risk from their kin. But it is, allegedly at least, not the youngsters offing the elderly in the hops of a payout:

Locals, however, say family elders were willing participants in the whole affair. "They think that since they can't get resources from the forest, this is the only way their families can escape poverty," farmer Jarnail Singh, 60, told TOI.

We also have reasonable evidence that changes in tax law regarding estates can change the timing of death.

The lesson from this being perhaps uncomfortable for the more radical egalitarians among us. Assuming that tiger story is true some people are willing to quite literally sacrifice themselves for their children in just economic terms. Which means that it's really going to be very difficult indeed to reach a society in which parents do not actively conspire to privilege their own children over those of others. Even radical measures like 100% death taxes, a pure insistence upon absolutely equal schooling for everyone, we're still going to have people working to create that inequality.

A society without any form of inherited privilege just isn't going to work because humans ourselves just don't seem to work that way.