Cooperation vs. Competition: This trade off seems to explain the roots of the most of social behavior.
I began to think that those who favor competition over cooperation (not necessarily exclusively) are not satisfied with a world where everyone is equally safe or comfortable / miserable. They are biased to believe that they themselves will be better off in a competitive setting [as opposed to non-competitive] for various reasons:
1. They feel that they are inherently superior to others (or others are inherently inferior to them) in whatever way that matters for survival, or
2. They feel that they have the innate quality to strive further for a better life than the average of the rest, given a level playground (which is a function of #1), or
3. They lack whatever it may get them ahead in a fair game but they are confident that they will find and keep a way of manipulating the ‘game’ in their favor.
Honestly, when I think of anyone in any of the above categories, I feel sorry for him.