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The Myth of OwnershipTaxes and Justice$
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Liam Murphy and Thomas Nagel

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780195150162

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0195150163.001.0001

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Conclusion: Politics

Conclusion: Politics

(p.173) 9 Conclusion: Politics
The Myth of Ownership

Liam Murphy

Thomas Nagel (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

What politically feasible results might be drawn from the foregoing reflections? Self-interest does set limits to what is politically feasible, but most people defend their views about taxation in moral language. So much would be gained from the wholesale rejection of the morally obtuse but tenacious ideas of everyday libertarianism. Increasingly widespread understanding of how capitalism works may help. We may hope that most people are coming to believe that even under capitalism the organization of the economy and the allocation of its product between public and private control is a legitimate object of continual collective choice, and that this choice must be made on grounds that justify it not only economically but morally, and by a democratic procedure that legitimizes it.

Keywords:   feasible, capitalism, economy, self-interest, collective choice

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