Fri Oct 13 11:15:30 PDT 2000

Leo asks how the claim that "the free development of each is a condition for the free development of all" can be anything but a principle of distributive justice. Well, it can be a factual claim: that there cannot asa matter of fact be free development for each without there being free development for all. Moreover, if it is a normative claim, it is not a distributive one. It does not tell us that we are to distribute freedom equally, or that we may distribute unequally just insofar as necessary in order to promote greater freedom. In fact, it tell sus nothing about the distribution of freedom or free development except that it must be universal for individuals to enjoy it. That's consistent with a very large number of inconsistent distributions. --jks

In a message dated Fri, 13 Oct 2000 2:03:57 PM Eastern Daylight Time, LeoCasey at writes:

<< << If we want a society based where 'the free development of each is the precondition for the free development of all'

But what is this classic Marxian formula, if not very clearly a principle of distributive justice? If you want to forego the language of justice, you can't very well appeal to this formula -- or to the common good -- as if it is somehow outside of that language. Rather, you must grapple with how it is possible to construct at least provisional concepts of "justice," which escape some of the strictures you see in the common use of the language.

Leo Casey United Federation of Teachers 260 Park Avenue South New York, New York 10010-7272 (212-598-6869)

Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never has, and it never will. If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom, and yet deprecate agitation are men who want crops without plowing the ground. They want rain without thunder and lightening. They want the ocean without the awful roar of its waters. -- Frederick Douglass --


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