- Capitalism and Alternatives -

A Paradox Of Equality and Freedom - to discuss Mcspolight's doubts- To discuss Mcspotlight’s doubts -

Posted by: Monane ( Singapore ) on February 09, 19100 at 17:36:52:

In Reply to: I believe it is surely impossible for freedom of certain opinions to exist and to strive for equality. posted by Monane on February 08, 19100 at 14:00:21:

McSpotlight: Surely this rests on the idea that you always act on your opinion?; there is a great deal of difference between having an opinion and acting on that opinion; you may believe, say, that gravity doesn't exist; but even the most diehard non-believer in gravity will think twice about jumping out of an airplane...
To use a slightly more mundane example, suppose your best friend is cheating on their husband/wife; this is wrong in your opinion, but if you value their friendship more than you value correcting your friend's perceived wrongdoing, then you will do nothing.
McSpotlight: Perhaps a bit of clarification on your part as to what you mean by 'freedom' would be a good idea?
After all, limiting the 'freedom' of someone to kill you is restricting somebody else's freedom to restrict your freedom; the 'freedom' aimed for by most people is not total freedom, but the maximum freedom that can be shared by all.

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Directly answering your question, my definition of freedom are adapted from those of the declaration of Independence (partly because its America - the stranglehold of Capitalism and partly of its undeniable influence upon the world). Thus, summarizing it, freedom is the freedom for safety and happiness. Of course, you will question what safety and happiness and what scope they cover. I shall adopt your perspective of maximum safety and maximum happiness of all.

The existence of freedom, according to my perspective, can and only will exist with equality. Paraphrasing - Without equality, freedom cannot exist. Thus the two great ideology of the Democratic world is essentially paradoxes and they will never succeed in getting both or even one right. This might be seen as absurd but I have the following reasons.

1) If certain bias exist in some members of the population, and if these bias exist, surely one cannot totally guarantee the safety and happiness to those that are bias against. My former example was that of a white supremist and if he obtain a job in a ruling department - say policemen, he might and will in many ways be bias or at least influence by his opinion and cause unfairness and thus inequality. Note : the person might easily be a judge or minister.

2) Freedom will not exist as Maximum Freedom as suggested by Mcspotlight. Although, on the surface, people might want Maximum Freedom for all. But what is all. For those who voted Hitler, was the “all” Germans or was “all” just Germans Germans. The “all” that people hoped ( labeled Maximum Freedom by McS) is their community, their people. Surely, maximum freedom excludes those that strive for certain values ( good - like Communism ) as long most of the population see it as evil. Naturally, people want total freedom for their community despite of any injustice or inequality on the other communities. With this cruel instinct of suppressing that which is undesirable to them to feel happy and safe ( freedom ), it is surely not a fine example of Maximum Freedom and can never lead to equality. For there is no “all” when Maximum Freedom is propagated, because too many communities exist and there will only be constant struggle for the Maximum Freedom that each think is actually Maximum Freedom.

In conclusion, I think that MDG is right in many sense, that justice is blind to injustice. Although he advocates using the proper channels in solving the problems, I think the problem will never end if only the proper channels are used. Read his post to understand. After all, these Great human notions of freedom and equality cannot go unachieved forever. Surely, despite all the failures of communism, I believe if one wants to see the two ideals materialising, Communism is the only possible means, regardless of the great human scarifice that one might be gambling themselves on. Because if the gamble pays, it really pays.

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