Marx uses the idea of freedom to justify Communism, yet Nozick uses it to justify pure Capitalism. Which if either, is right?

Essay by shmallUniversity, Bachelor'sC+, August 2004

download word file, 10 pages 5.0

Downloaded 82 times

Marx uses the idea of freedom to justify communism, yet Nozick

uses it to justify pure capitalism. Who, if either, is right?

'From each according to his ability to each according to his needs' or 'From each as they choose to each as they are chosen' ? One concept argues that communism will lead the way to utopia, while the opposing concept, Capitalism, as proposed by Nozick, insists that the ownership of private property defines freedom. But what is freedom? Freedom is the ability to act as s/he choose without being subject to any undue restraints and restrictions; the ability to exercise freewill and make choices independently of any external independent force. Freedom speaks of equality; of possessing the liberty to make choices based on one's own prerequisites. In the light of this definition therefore, the concept of 'communism' would seem to represent the egalitarian society that Marx speaks of throughout his work.

Nozick however, uses this very same concept in support and promotion of a system of government, run purely on the basis of capitalist ideology. Yet freedom can mean different things to different cultures and different societies; but to keep this simple reference will be made when possible to the above definition only. The title clearly questions which concept allows human beings to act freely. When thinking about Communism, one cannot help but remember the lyrics of the famous John Lennon song 'Imagine' in which he makes bold references to Marxist ideals 'imagine no need for hunger... imagine all the people living life in peace...' (this is off memory). Perhaps this utopia idea is far from reality and almost impossible to apply to society today and perhaps 'you may say I'm a dreamer' and all that remains is hope for 'one world'...