Collective intelligence, group think, cooperative learning - what ever you call it really does work. If we put our resources, and our brains together to solve problems, we all live better.
Unfortunately, under conditions of war and crisis, there are always a few people who can become fabulously well off in comparison to the rest of us. And studies show that we humans would rather be better off than our neighbors, even if it means doing less well in the long run. When those people get in positions of power, we end up with war and crises. (Yes Dick Cheney, this means you.)