Entitlement Theory

In his entitlement theory, Nozick sees human beings as the end in themselves. They are also responsible in justifying the process of redistributing goods. However, this is only possible under the condition of consent which forms a key aspect of anarchy, utopia as well as the state. In theory, he also argues that there is no state and any individual must have an effective contract with private individuals who are involved in social services. He maintains that anarchy and capitalism would definitely transform into monarchist mode of state. However, this form of anarchy would, however, exists for a short period of time before another stage emerges which he refers to as minimalist.

Rawls also states that social inequalities should not be justified in any case. Rather, there should principles of freedom and fairness that fosters equality. This would form the fundamental basis of association. Social contract is another important factor that favors principles of fairness and impartiality. This helps to eliminate biasness in the society as well as the huge gap between the rich and the poor in the society. However, Rawls argues, “we agree on these principles without knowing what our positions in the society will be or what idea of the good is”. According to Rawls, no one is disadvantaged or advantaged by the outcome of the principles chosen in whatever case. Sometimes, the outcomes are determined by natural changes as well as social; circumstances.

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On the other hand, Nozick argues that whether justice is just or not, it highly depends on how it came about. This is in contrary to justice that is acquired through equality and individual’s need. Thus, the law of distributive justice is entirely dependent on the pattern of distribution that has been established at that particular moment. Nozick states that certain distribution of goods becomes just depending on the pattern that one takes. Thus, the relevance of needs and equality may also be determined by the difference principle. Nozick states that justice is about maintaining and respecting people’s rights. This is applicable in particular to their properties as well as self ownership. People must be given freedom to make independent decisions as well as decide on what they want to do with what they own. He views every individual as a separate entity whose autonomy must be respected. People cannot be forced to do things they do not agree with. They are ends in themselves. He further states that taking property from people in order to further redistribute it is violation of their rights. On the contrary, taxation is mainly used for redistribution of wealth in the society. For example, taxing Renaldo’s extra money is meant to return the money to the poor fans which according to Nozick are violating his rights to own his property.

As earlier stated, his view is based on the right of ownership. He argues that self ownership is crucial as it allows one to be entitled with what he or she produces. Therefore, most of the patterned theories that focus on distributive justice normally restrict people in taking free actions. He postulates that there is no need to intervene in order to redistribute properties as it is a mere violation of rights.

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In conclusion, one of major difference between Rawls’s theory and Nozick’s theory is that Nozick defiantly defends the rights of ownership of properties. However, it is worth noting that most of the properties owned by people results from people’s social position as well as their natural talents. Therefore, it is morally wrong to exercise inequalities in property ownership in the name of justice. Principles of justice should be given preference when deciding the rights of ownership by individuals.

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