Ariadne's Thread on Property
Replies
speaker
Ann

(main path)

speaker
Dee

Alternate speaker
Vera






On Property

(Click here to continue on the main path)

Professor Sidgwick Speaking

Good morning!

We're here today for another dialog. It will be short this time, I promise you. But I think it will be important.

We argue constantly these days about the proper role of government, the proper extent of regulation, and the proper level of taxation. On the one hand there are those who believe that both the scope of government and level of taxation should be minimized. On the other hand there are those who believe that the government should be quite active in solving social problems and that taxes, especially on the rich, should be much higher. Problem solving costs money.

We have been arguing about this sort of thing for a long time and I don't think we will settle it today. But I do think we can bring out some of the questions and arguments related to one of the most fundamental points at issue: the nature of property and property rights. I know that you talked about this some in our dialog on justice, but I want you to say more. I think this issue is crucially important to a degree that most Americans don't recognize.

You have all read John Locke, John Rawls, Robert Nozick and some of their critics. What do you think?

INSTRUCTIONS for reading On Property



  • "On Property" is a dialogue among six characters, each of whom has a different political philosophy.

  • The character who is currently speaking is indicated at the top right corner of the page. On this page, for example, Professor Sidgwick is speaking. His name and picture are displayed in the top right corner.

  • After one character speaks, the other characters can respond. There will always be at least one response. Images of the responders are displayed in the column on the left side of the page. On this page, for example, the responses are from Ann, Dee, and Vera. Their images are displayed in the column on the left side of the page.

  • There is a 'main path' through the dialogue that allows the user to read the main pages. The main path is the shortest way through the main points of the dialogue.

  • You can move quickly along the main path by clicking the link at the top right where it says "Click here to continue on the main path." You can also move along the main path by clicking the first response at the top of the column on the left side of the page. On this page, for example, you can move along the main path by clicking Ann's image near the top of the left-hand column. Notice that is says "main path" under her image.

  • If you click any response other than one that takes you along the main path, you will go off the main path. For example, on this page there are off-path responses from Dee and Vera. After reading a response that is off the main path, you can return to the main path by clicking the 'Return' icon that will appear at the top of the left hand column.

  • In addition to responses from characters in the dialogue, the left column sometimes includes links to comments or to extended quotations from primary source materials. If you go off the main path to read those pages, you can return by using the BACK button on your browser. (There is no built-in link that you can use to return to the main path.)



Ariadne's Home Contact Ariadne at: Property Home
Property Bibliography Property Contents