argument top image

Is socialism ethical? Show more Show less
Back to question

Socialism is the political belief the government should redistribute wealth to close the economic gap in society. Many argue that this is a far better way to live, as all citizens can life with the secure knowledge that they will be protected by the state. But is it ethical for this to happen because the state took money away from another citizen?

No, socialism is not ethical Show more Show less

Socialism infringes on personal rights and gives the state too much power.
< (2 of 3) Next position >

Socialism takes away personal property.

The government owns all property in a socialist society.

Context

In the United States, the Democratic Presidential candidates in the 2020 race are running on the platform of socialism. Redistribution of wealth, healthcare for all, and college education for all are a few of the key takeaways from the Democratic agenda. Is socialism ethical?

The Argument

Socialism is the intended solution to solve most of humanity's problems. Yet, looking at the historical practice of socialist ideas, socialism has become problematic with an inclination towards dictatorship. Under socialism, the state is the only employer responsible for the ownership of shops, factories, production, and work facilities. This government system results in a lack of freedom as opposition towards the state could cause limitation or refusal of such services. Socialism is not ethical because it forces people into submission to the state. [1] The implementation of socialism in the Soviet Union in the past proves its failure in solving the nation's problems. The Soviet farms and factories failed to sustain the people in meeting their quotas. In other countries like India, China, and the United Kingdom, after decades of trying socialism, it was rejected because it didn't work. Socialism is a system that believes that the state can make better decisions for the people. By taking away peoples' right to make decisions for themselves, the state takes away their freedom and their rights to own personal property, making socialism unethical. [2]

Counter arguments

Socialism is ethical because it provides equal, universal benefits to all its citizens. For example, socialism allows each person under the state to be entitled to free health care. With everything controlled and owned by the state, it would also provide a minimum basic income for those who cannot work and are unable to maintain basic living standards. Such improvements would allow poor communities to live in better conditions, reducing poverty. The state governs the income of the people, decreasing the marginal utility of income. The redistribution of wealth from the very rich to the poor would result in a balanced society, providing people with equal opportunities. Decreasing the wealth gap between the rich and poor would result in a more equal and cohesive society. [3]

Proponents

Premises

Rejecting the premises

References

  1. https://fee.org/articles/under-socialism-morality-is-scarcer-than-bread/
  2. https://www.heritage.org/progressivism/commentary/three-nations-tried-socialism-and-rejected-it
  3. https://www.economicshelp.org/blog/147271/economics/pros-and-cons-of-socialism/

Vote

Not sure yet? Read more ↑

Discuss

This page was last edited on Tuesday, 22 Sep 2020 at 23:05 UTC