The Argument Against Nozick's 'Distributive Justice Essay example

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Argument Against Nozick’s Distributive Justice

Robert Nozick argues in his Entitlement Theory that there are three main topics in the justice of holdings: the acquisition of ‘un-held things’, the transfer of holdings, and the rectification of injustice in holdings.1 Nozick’s theory of what makes a transfer of holdings ‘just’ should be rejected for two key reasons and the rectification of injustice of holdings should be rejected for two key reasons. Robert Nozick declares a transfer of holdings just if the exchange is voluntary and if the holding being exchanged was originally acquired by just means.2 The first key point of this argument that should be rejected is the fact that the grounds for a ‘just’ transfer of holdings relies
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If the only thing constituting the justice of a transfer of holdings is whether or not it was voluntary, that permits exchanges to take place that are inhumane, immoral, and/or detrimental to society. If a society strives to remain fair to the population as a whole and wants to maintain some level of control and morality, there must be more limitations put in place over what makes a transfer in holdings ‘just’. The method that Nozick proposes to rectify past injustices of holdings should also be rejected. Nozick creates an ideal principle of rectification that states that when an injustice of holdings is discovered, an extensive investigation must ensue in which all of the transfer or acquisitions of that particular holding must be traced back to the original injustice.3 After this is done, a best estimate must be made as to what would have occurred to that holding if the original injustice hadn’t occurred and that conclusion must be realized.4 If this principle would be upheld, a person who possesses a particular holding, which they acquired through a ‘just’ transfer or acquisition as defined by Nozick’s entitlement theory, would potentially have to relinquish that holding completely through the rectification process is they are not in the conclusion that is realized. This raises one very vital question, is one injustice permissible in order to rectify a
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