Throwing scraps down to the guys at the bottom of the ladder is to keep them from setting the house on fire. Ethically, stealing is considered a right if your situation is so bad that starving is the alternative. Don't agree with me? Consider that practically every religion on this planet reaches the same conclusion.
So while I don't think that throwing scraps to the guys at the bottom is going to be effective it still better than all the alternatives that have come before. Those tend to end up as revolutions, civil wars, or worse.