Re: [ox-en] RE: compulsion
- From: Graham Seaman <graham seul.org>
- Date: Sun, 10 Feb 2002 13:33:16 -0500 (EST)
On Sun, 10 Feb 2002, Kermit Snelson wrote:
I agree with your post, but I obviously need to clarify one thing:
The problem for me is with your last sentence: 'Someone
will always have to work... andsocial justice requires
that it be all who are capable of it' which for me is one
huge can of worms. A closely related phrase with more
historical resonance is: 'From each according to his ability,
to each according to his needs'.
You're reading quite a bit more into my statement than what I said. I was
simply arguing that no one should live at another's expense without mutual
consent or compensation. In other words: exploitation bad. I wasn't
arguing for police state totalitarianism. I think that's bad, too.
Of course, I never imagined that you were. I'm just trying to draw out
what may be implicit in these ideas. Sometimes that isn't at all obvious -
Russian revolutionaries pre 1917 saw 'from each according to his
abilities...' as a description of a kind of paradise - the actual
consequences of trying to realise that are not at all obvious in the
phrase itself. And I wouldn't like to look down from heaven ;-) on my
great-grandchildren cursing me for my support of 'social justice' or
'selbstentfaltung' or whatever, (as happened with those Russians) simply
because I hadn't taken the time to look at what the words imply
concretely. Exploitation -bad. Totalitarianism - bad. I don't think
there's remotely likely to be anyone on the list who disagrees with that,
and I certainly didn't imagine you would! The question is, how to
organise things so that that pair don't happen.:-)
I'm also not saying that a society based on selbstentfaltung would be
bad - just wondering aloud if there could be any negative consequences to
Suppose I decide to spend a year in bed, as a conceptual art project?
And who makes the decision - is social justice embodied in courts?
Spending the year in bed as a conceptual art installation is perfectly OK as
long as somebody is paying for it voluntarily, either through personal
savings, private philanthropy or an allocation of public funds through
democratically enacted law. That's how such projects are currently funded,
and I think that's fine.
Of course, current societies can afford to support only so much
"non-commercial" activity in this way. It's a rather elite game. It
appears to me that Oekonux is thinking about ways to organize society so
that this funding model may be extended to support any form of human
endeavor, not just those currently deemed worthy of support by those who
control private and public philanthropy.
I think I'll let Stefan(s) reply to that.. :-)