Socialism Revised

58 Pages Posted: 3 Jun 2017

See all articles by John E. Roemer

John E. Roemer

Yale University - Department of Political Science; Yale University - Cowles Foundation

Date Written: March 31, 2017

Abstract

Marxists have viewed the task of socialism as the elimination of exploitation, defined in the Marxian manner in terms the excess of labor expended over of labor commanded. I argue that the concept of Marxian exploitation commits both type-one (false positives) and type-two (false negatives) errors as a diagnosis of distributive injustice: it misses instances of distributive injustice because they do not involve exploitation, and it calls some economic relations characterized by exploitation unjust when they are not. The most important reformulators of Marx’s concept of socialism, which implicitly or explicitly attempt to correct the Marxian errors, are Oscar Lange, James Meade, John Rawls, Robert Nozick, Ronald Dworkin and G.A. Cohen. I trace this development, and argue for a re-definition of socialist principles based upon it.

Keywords: Exploitation, Socialist Equality of Opportunity, Market Socialism

JEL Classification: P2

Suggested Citation

Roemer, John E., Socialism Revised (March 31, 2017). Cowles Foundation Discussion Paper No. 2089. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2978725 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2978725

John E. Roemer (Contact Author)

Yale University - Department of Political Science ( email )

Box 208269
New Haven, DC 06520-8269
United States
203-432-5249 (Phone)
203-432-6196 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://pantheon.yale.edu/~jer39/

Yale University - Cowles Foundation

Box 208281
New Haven, CT 06520-8281
United States

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