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Rebel Mystic: Toward a Theorization of the Aesthetic and Communicative Dimensions of Reggae and Dub
Unformatted Document Text:  29 economic theory, to lead their choice of socioeconomic and political lives. 14 And the market-based economic system that modern liberal democracies rely on does necessarily lead to unequal distribution of income. As a result, some level of income differences would exist (See also Galbraith, J., 1996; Lenski, G., 1984). For instance, citizens in the upper classes are likely to stress the importance of individual liberty, including rights to own private property; citizens in the lower classes are likely to emphasize the importance of equality. And citizens in the middle class are likely to enjoy both equality and liberty. Such a society, as could be observed in today’s democracies, is not going to agree on the leveling of income. Indeed, the historical fact suggests that societies that are based more of on equal income and power will probably fail. The fall of classical democracies of Greek city-states and communist states in the late 1980s suggests that distributions of economic and political power that are not based on the outcome of private or individual effort would probably not last long. In both the classical democracy and communist systems, private property was considered as an impediment to the achievement of the good society. The political equality that was thought to exist in these experiments seemed to be an outcome of political action, not of socioeconomic conditions. The failure of these two models seems to be, in part, a result of misunderstanding the importance of self-interest in a world of scarce resources. Unless individuals unleash their competitive spirits in the production process, the level of economic development is likely to be weak or very low. Such a situation will likely result in political instability 14 Self-interest does not mean that individuals do not care for the wellbeing of their fellow citizens; in fact, for the most part, they do. Although economic development seems to have changed societies from cohesive communities to individualized citizens over time, individuals are not likely to abandon their social bond that has lasted for thousands of years. Self-interest, rather, means that individuals will take all or most of the responsibilities and decisions that would help them to lead independent or autonomous economic and political lives.

Authors: Tracy, James.
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29
economic theory, to lead their choice of socioeconomic and political lives.
14
And the
market-based economic system that modern liberal democracies rely on does necessarily
lead to unequal distribution of income. As a result, some level of income differences
would exist (See also Galbraith, J., 1996; Lenski, G., 1984). For instance, citizens in the
upper classes are likely to stress the importance of individual liberty, including rights to
own private property; citizens in the lower classes are likely to emphasize the importance
of equality. And citizens in the middle class are likely to enjoy both equality and liberty.
Such a society, as could be observed in today’s democracies, is not going to agree on the
leveling of income. Indeed, the historical fact suggests that societies that are based more
of on equal income and power will probably fail. The fall of classical democracies of
Greek city-states and communist states in the late 1980s suggests that distributions of
economic and political power that are not based on the outcome of private or individual
effort would probably not last long. In both the classical democracy and communist
systems, private property was considered as an impediment to the achievement of the
good society. The political equality that was thought to exist in these experiments
seemed to be an outcome of political action, not of socioeconomic conditions. The
failure of these two models seems to be, in part, a result of misunderstanding the
importance of self-interest in a world of scarce resources. Unless individuals unleash
their competitive spirits in the production process, the level of economic development is
likely to be weak or very low. Such a situation will likely result in political instability
14
Self-interest does not mean that individuals do not care for the wellbeing of their fellow citizens; in fact,
for the most part, they do. Although economic development seems to have changed societies from
cohesive communities to individualized citizens over time, individuals are not likely to abandon their social
bond that has lasted for thousands of years. Self-interest, rather, means that individuals will take all or
most of the responsibilities and decisions that would help them to lead independent or autonomous
economic and political lives.


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