The Most Convincing Justification for Private Property

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The most convincing justification for private property provided by Ziff is that of economic efficiency. Private property incentivises innovation, lowers the cost of dealing with externalities, and with moderation, reduces the susceptibility of property to the tragedy of the commons. Economic efficiency holds particular weight because of the significant amount of today’s societies that rely on a market based system to conduct business, trade and commerce. This system lists private property as one of its founding tenets and therefore heightens the justification’s persuasiveness. It is not suggested that a fully privatised property regime would be ideal either, but a mixture of both private property and communal property is seen as the best…show more content…
To the contrary Ziff argues that the cost of policing would also be more expensive under a private property regime as the creation of boundaries would add costs that would not have otherwise have existed. Conversely Grafton suggests that the cost of boundary erection is merely temporary, as after the initial set up of boundaries, cost of negotiations and policing are comparatively reduced. Communal property rights contrast this; as they hold long-term economic costs to the interest owners as negotiation costs will continue to increase exponentially, as policing costs are not one off, and negotiation costs are comparatively higher . It is therefore evident that private property provides the most economically efficient method of dealing with externalities in the short-run and the long run, as costs and reaction time are rapidly reduced. Ziff also argues that the over distribution of private property may result in myopic view of externalities, as each land-owner would only care for their own property and not about the needs of the wider community affected by externalities created by their land. This short term view, is an inherent downfall of private property, but society has developed means and ways in which these costs can be met, for example through regulatory authorities, and it is therefore argued that a fully privatise property regime would not be preferable but a partly common and partly private alternative, as
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