Could a market economy produce outcomes that meet our criteria of distributive justice? Some egalitarians, such as Carens, have proposed that markets should govern production but not distribution, relying on moral incentives to motivate the producers, but this seems unrealistic. Instead, we can ask whether a suitably framed market might give people the income that they deserved, as measured by their productive contribution. A conception of economic desert is elaborated by considering various challenges to this proposal. The conclusion is that a market socialist economy can at least come close to achieving distributive justice.
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