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Distributive Justice and Productive Necessity

Michael Goldman


Whatever is distributed must first be produced, and since the recipients are also the producers there will be constraints on distribution determined by productive necessity. Standard theories of distributive justice systematically ignore these constraints. In light of these considerations I define what it is that must be produced and how it must be distributed in order to assure continued production. Desert, equality, entitlement, and the other values normally associated with distributive justice must take a back seat to the need to assure that there is anything to distribute at all.
AJOL African Journals Online