Socialism Full Notes (got 92% on Final)

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Department
Political Science
Course
POS 210
Professor
Crittenden
Semester
Fall

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UUnit  Five: SOCIALISM Socialism,  in all its forms,  arises  in reaction  to private  property,  to  exploitation  of the  poor,  and  to gross  inequalities—the  disparity   between  rich and  poor.   In short,  socialism  arises  in reaction  to  capitalism.    As Kolakowski  writes  in his classic  history  of Marxism: Socialism  arises  with  "the  conviction  that    uncontrolled  concentration  of  wealth  and   unbridled  competition  was  bound  to  lead   to  increasing  misery  and  crises,  and  that   the  system  must  be  replaced  by  one  in  which  the  organisation  of  production  and   exchange  could  do  away  with  poverty  and   oppression  and  bring  about  a  redistribution  of  the  world's  gifts  on  a  basis  of  equality." Socialism  also  reacts  to liberalism  and  its emphasis  on the  individual.    Socialists  favor  equality  over  liberty , as  Kolakowski’s  quotation   indicates,  and  community  over  individuality .  But does  this  emphasis   on group  or community  place  it on the  side  of conservatism?   No, for  socialists  oppose  hierarchy  and  are  on the  side  of society­ at­large  over   particular  groups  like a guild or parish.   It is socialist  citizenship  that  is  more  important  than  membership  in specific associations,  the  “little   platoons,”  which  of course  conservatives  support. But the  main  focus  for emerging  socialism  is on the  social ills  produced  by capitalism: What  were  the  working  conditions  like in the  early  days  of factory   labor,  in England,  say,  in the  1820's? In 1828  a radical  magazine,  The  Lion, published  the  story  of Robert   Blincoe,  one  of eighty  impoverished  children  sent  off to work in a  factory  at  Lowdham.   Everyday  Robert  and  other  boys  and  girls­­all  about  10  years  old­­were  whipped  night  and  day,  not  only when  they   were  bad,  but  also  when  they  failed  to work hard  enough. 1 At the  factory  at  Litton,  to which  Blincoe  was  transferred,  the   conditions  were  even  worse.   The  children  scrambled  with  the  pigs  for  the  slop  in the  trough;  they  were  kicked  and  punched  and  raped;  their   employer—one  Ellice  Needham—had  the  disgusting  habit  of pinching   the  children's  ears  until his nails  met  through  the  flesh.   The  children   were  practically  naked  and  wore  the  same  clothes  summer  and  winter.   For sheer  grotesque  pleasure,  the  children's  teeth  were  filed  down. Without  question  this  kind  of brutality  was  the  exception.   But still it  went  on, and  less  intense  variations  went  on all the  time.   These   sensationalist  stories—well documented;  read,  for example,  Jack  London’s  People  of the  Abyss —illustrate  that  such  callous  inhumanity   was  accepted  as  natural,  as  part  of the  price  to be  paid  for consumer   goods. What  caused  these  conditions?   According  to socialists,  it was   competition .  Competition  required  stiff measures,  so regardless  of  treatment,  good  or bad,  everyone  worked  a sixteen­ hour  day:  getting   to work by 6 AM and  heading  home  at  10  PM. Socialists  were  those  who  wanted  to do something  about  these   deplorable  conditions.   All socialists,  whatever  their  stripes,  believed— and  believe—that  greater  equality  will lead  to more  cooperation   than  competition,  that  this  greater  cooperation  will in turn  enhance   greater  fraternity/community  and  thus  liberate  men  and  women   from  inhibitions,  restrictions,  and  exploitation  thus  making  them  fully  productive  and  creative  persons  and  fulfilled  individuals. We shall discuss  two  main  varieties  of socialism:  "utopian  socialism "  or what  we  might  call "socialism  before  Marx" and  "scientific   socialism " or "Marxism."   In this  unit  we  shall focus  on utopian   socialism. But ALL socialists  have  the  same  essential  impulses: 1.  a   passion  for  equality   or egalitarianism.   How that  is defined   changes  from  socialist  thinker  to socialist  thinker  and  from  era  to era,   but  it is the  central  value  for socialists,  just  as  liberty  is central  for  liberals. But don't  liberals  have  equality?   Yes, but  it is political  equality   or equal  rights.   That  translates  into  equality  before  the  law.  Liberals   want  to treat  people  equally;  socialists  want  to make  people  more   equal. Therefore,  socialists  wish  to extend  justice  beyond  political  and   legal  areas  into  economic  and  social areas.   In the  famous  Marxist   2 formulation,  society  should  receive  "from  each  according  to his  ability," and  should  give  "to each  according  to his need."   Thus  not   everyone  would  be  treated  completely  equally,  an  idea  learned  from   Rousseau. This vision  of equality,  sometimes  called  equality  of  conditions ,  contrasted  with  the  liberal  notion  of equality  of  opportunity , which   implies  that  everyone  should  have  a chance  to compete  for scarce   resources,  but  that  once  the  competition  is underway,  winners  will  claim  their  rewards  and  losers  must  make  it on their  own. If we  imagine  life to be  like a horse  race  around  a track,  then   liberals  are  those  who  want  to guarantee  that  everyone  can  make  it  into  the  starting  gate,  but  once  the  race  is underway,  it is everyone  for   him/herself.   This view  of equality  of opportunity  is sometimes  called   the  “starting­ gate”  theory . Equality  of conditions,  on the  other  hand,  is to assure  that  everyone   has  a good  chance  of finishing  the  race  more  or less  at  the  same  time.   That  is not  to say  that  everyone  must  finish  at  exactly  the  same  time,   but  the  times  should  be  close.   Every  runner  should  have  the   wherewithal  to run  well.  So some  people  in society,  those  who  make  a   lot of money,  will have  to pay  higher  taxes  to help  those  who  might  be   given  food  stamps  or a government­ supplied  job.  This is why,  to make   a horserace  fair, some  jockeys  must  carry  weights  in their  saddles. When  a socialist  argues  that  everyone  should  finish  the  race  at  the   same  time,  that  all should  be  equal  in this  strong  sense,  then  this   equality  is called  equality  of  result ­­that  is, all should  end  up  with   the  same.   BUT THIS IS NOT THE NORM FOR SOCIALISTS; NOT MANY  ARGUED FOR EQUALITY OF RESULT. Socialist  equality  is also  contrasted  with  the  conservative  vision  of a  natural  hierarchy  of status  and  ability.   To attempt  a move  toward   equality,  thought  the  conservatives,  is to go against  nature  and  to do  the  impossible. 2. an  aversion  to  private  property , whether  in the  form  of land,   commerce,  or industry;  "property  is theft"  said  the  French  socialist   Proudhon.   Equality,  many  socialists  believe,  cannot  come  about   without  the  abolition  of private  property. Once  private  property  has  been  eliminated,  then  the  community   will own  the  means  of production­ ­the  factories,  land,  machinery,   everything  necessary  to produce. 3 Socialists,  following  Rousseau,  did NOT think  that  all property  had  to  be  appropriated;  only  productive  assets­ ­things  necessary  as  means   of production­ ­and  not  all personal  possessions  had  to be  communally   owned.   So people  can  still own  their  own  furniture,  cars,  houses,   clothes,  etc.   Here  is an  example  of equality  of conditions  vs. equality   of result.   Equality  of conditions  means  that  some  can  own  more  than   others,  but  not  in vital, profit­making,  or productive  assets,  only in  personal  possessions.   One  holding  to equality  of result  would  even   want  to regulate  or control  personal  possessions  to assure  that  no one   had  more  than  anyone  else. 3.  This passion  for collective  ownership , the  common  ownership  of  wealth  and  the  means  of production,  derives  from  the  utopian   socialists'  thinking  that  men  were  by nature  mutually  cooperative  but   socially corrupted.   If they  owned  what  they  worked  on, they  would   get  along  and  work better.   So here  socialists  emphasize  cooperation,   not  competition. 4.  A belief in the  solidarity  of  social  life .  Men were  by nature  social   creatures;  they  were  not  individualistic  or selfish  or utilitarian.   The   supreme  value  was  community,  not  self­interest  or competition. This emphasis  on community  values  is at  some  distance  from   the  liberal  emphasis  on the  individual.   Socialists  criticize  the  idea  that   men  are  born  into  a state  of nature  with  certain  rights  and  liberties.    Men are  creatures  of their  environments.   They  cannot  be  understood   and  cannot  understand  themselves  except  through  reference  to the   kind  of society  they  were  raised  in and  the  kinds  of associations  and   relationships  they  are  involved  in. So the  socialist  conception  of human  nature­ ­that  man  is  naturally  social­­differs  completely  from  the  Hobbesian  view  of the   greedy  and  aggressive  man  or the  liberal  view  of the  independent,   isolated  man.   It also  contrasts  with  the  conservative  view  that   humans  are  irrational,  selfish,  fallen,  and  to some  extent  evil. 5.  an  aversion  to  poverty .  Poverty  is seen  as  the  chief cause  of  oppression.   The  paradox  of capitalism  that  angered  early  socialists   was  that  workers  could  not  afford  to purchase  the  very  products  that   they  as  workers  produced. When  the  community  owns  and  controls  production,  then  no  member  of the  community  will be  poor.   Every  member  of that   community  is an  owner,  will have  a job, and  will have  income.   Poverty   will be  abolished  through  collective  ownership. 4 Our concern  in this  Unit, as  said  earlier,  is not  with  the  scientific or  Marxist  version  of socialism,  which  we  shall take  up  in Unit 7, but  with   the  earlier,  utopian  versions  of socialism.   Utopian  socialists  are  united   on these  five impulses,  but  disagreed  on how  to realize  their  socialist   aims. To see  the  beginning  of socialism,  we  must  return  to the  French   Revolution. The  French  Revolution The  French  Revolution  is often  considered  to be  at  the  center  of the   movement  for human  rights.   This claim  rests  on the  focus  during  the   Revolution  on reason  and  the  individual. But the  history  of the  Revolution  also  shows  a suspension,  if not   the  elimination,  of human  rights  and  the  substitution  of the   community,  nation,  and  state  over  the  individual. Thomas  Jefferson's  influence  is partly  responsible  for the  liberal   aspects  of the  Revolution;  Jean­Jacques  Rousseau's,  for the  socialistic   aspects.   Both  influences  can  be  found  in the  great  document  of the   Revolution:  the  Declaration  of the  Rights  of Man and  of the  Citizen .   Many  today  still look to this  document  as  a source  for arguments   justifying  human  rights.   But the  document  has  essential  elements   that  are  anything  but  liberal. The  person  who  prepared  the  Declaration  of the  Rights  of Man and  of  the  Citizen  and  presented  it to the  French  Assembly  was  the  Marquis   de  Lafayette­ ­the  hero  of the  American  Revolution.   One  of his closest   advisers  was  Thomas  Jefferson,  who  was  serving  as  Ambassador  to  France. Yet the  purely  French  influence  comes  from  Rousseau  and  relates  to  the  suspension  of rights .  The  inspiration  was  found  in Rousseau’s  The   Social Contract , as  interpreted  by Emmanuel­ Joseph  Sieyes,  known  as   the  Abbe  Sieyes. Sieyes  thought  that  the  American  Declaration  of  Independence  clung  to an  old image  of power  and  its limitations.    Sieyes  argued  that  there  is  onl         power,  one  authority.   That  is the    nation .  So he  wrote  into  the  final version  of the  Declaration  of the   Rights  of Man and  of the  Citizen  two  articles: Article  3: "The  source  of all sovereignty  resides  essentially  in the   nation:  no group,  no individual  may  exercise  authority  not  emanating   expressly  therefrom." 5 Article  6: "Law is the  expression  of the  General  Will; all citizens  have   the  right  to concur  personally  or through  their  representatives  in its  formation.   The  law must  be  the  same  for all; whether  it protects  or  punishes." These  articles  may  sound  innocent,  but  they  were  not.   The  first   meant  that  authority  was  embedded  in the  nation.   But how  does  a  nation  express  and  exercise  authority?   WHO SPEAKS FOR THE  NATION? The  second  meant  that  anyone  judged  to be  in opposition  to the   general  will was  an  outlaw.  Outlaws  had  no rights  of any  kind.   And  who  was  to make  such  judgments  as  to who  was  and  was  not  an   outlaw? Maximilien  Robespierre , the  head  of the  Jacobin  Committee  on Public   Safety,  considered  himself,  and  became,  the  voice  of the  nation.   His  committee  decided  what  was  the  public good,  the  general  will.  And  so, following  Article  3, he  could  have  beheaded  an  aristocrat  like Louis   Capet  (king  Louis XVI) without  even  thinking  it manslaughter  or  murder.   The  king  was  an  outlaw  and  thus  without  any  rights. To be  consonant  with  Article  3, Robespierre  argued  that  his  interpretations  did indeed  emanate  from  the  nation.   His  voice   expressed  the  will of the  people,  of the  nation. Is it strange  that  such  an  interpretation  could  arise  in France?    Remember  the  power  of the  French  King: All rights  flowed  from  him;   his agents  controlled  all the  power.   Robespierre  was  really  nothing   but  a new  kind  of king—same  power,  different  face.   Marx, later  in this   course,  will offer  one  explanation  for how  this  could  happen. Further  result:   The  centralized  government  grows  at  the   expense  of local control  of the  people.   As the  central  government   grows,  those  institutions  that  express  the  people's  concerns­ ­ churches,  guilds,  even  the  family­­are  left out  of power.  This,  remember,  is a concern  of Burke. French  liberal  theorists  were  not  as  concerned  as  Hobbes  and  Locke   with  the  foundations  of legitimate  government.   They  were  concerned   with  the  more  practical  and  immediate  matter  of how  power  could  be   wrested,  seized,  from  powerful  monarchs.    Thus  the  whole  tradition  in France  pointed  to absolute  power.    Remember  that  in France  absolute  power  first  resided  in the  king,  so  passing  absolute  power  to Robespierre  was  something  of a tradition.   [Would  Burke  have  applauded  the  perpetuation  of that  tradition?    Why?   Why not?] 6 But absolute  power  after  the  Revolution  resided  not  in the  person  of a  king  but  in the  abstract  collective  of the  people  or the  nation  whose   embodiment  was  Robespierre.   An abstract  collective  like "the  people"   or the  nation  is too  removed  and  vague  to operate  politically with  any   efficacy.   Thus  Robespierre  embodies  the  nation  in himself  and   thereby  becomes  a kind  of leviathan. YET THE IMPORTANT POINT IS THAT THE JUSTIFICATION FOR THIS  ABSOLUTE POWER WAS NOT THE ABILITIES OR RIGHTS OF ONE MAN,  BUT THAT THE COLLECTIVITY OF THE PEOPLE, SPEAKING IN ONE  VOICE, NEEDED ONE SPEAKER TO GIVE IT VOICE. THAT WAS ROBESPIERRE. The  people  are  united.   The  people  are  one  and  are  possessed,  like an   individual,  with  a single  will.  That  will needed  to be  interpreted,  and   the  interpreter  was  Robespierre.   If some  were  out  of step  with  his  interpretation,  then  they  were  opponents  of that  single  will, were   enemies  of the  people.   Then  it was  his duty  to destroy  them.   Hence   THE TERROR­­the  execution  of the  aristocracy  and  enemies  of the   state,  even  if they  happened  to be  Jacobins. Terrorism , so important  a concept  today,  is the  intentional  targeting   of civilians  as a way  of undermining  the  people’s  confidence  in their  political leaders  and  the  policies  of those  leaders .  Thus  terrorism  is a  political  tactic  and  not  simply  a form  of criminal  behavior.  Keep  in  mind  that  the  term  “terrorism”  was  not  widely  used  until the   nineteenth  century,  in reference  to the  acts  and  practices  of  anarchists  who  employed   assassination,  murder,  and  bombing  to call  attention  to and  try to alter  capitalist  programs  that  they  saw  as   favoring  the  few at  the  expense  of the  many.  (We shall consider   terrorism  in more  detail in the  final Unit.) In the  context  of the  French  Revolution  terrorism  was  used  against  the   aristocracy,  whom  many  believed  were  far from  innocent  but  many  of  whom  were  not  agents  of the  state  and  so were  civilians.   But the   intent  was  also  to impress  on the  people  that  anyone,  at  any  time,   could  be  considered  an  enemy  of the  people  and  executed…including   Robespierre  himself.   The  point  was  not  just  to execute  enemies  of the   state.   It was  also  to impress  on the  people  the  folly of following  the   policies,  plans,  and  ideas  of the  aristocracy,  who  were  corrupt.   The   result  was  a reign  of terror  that  cowed  the  population  and  solidified,   for a time,  the  power  of the  Committee  on Public Safety  and   Robespierre.   Terror  succeeded  in creating  an  atmosphere  of fear  and,   unwanted  by Robespierre,  instability. 7 Many  writers  and  intellectuals  had  thought  that  the  French  Revolution   would  bring  forth  the  new  order  of equality,  liberty,  and  fraternity;   Liberte,  egalite,  fraternite  was  the  principal  motto  of the  Revolution. But the  ideas  of this  new  order  were  equally  applicable  to the  Terror   and  to oppression  by Robespierre  as  to democracy  and  equality.    Robespierre  said: The  terror  is  nothing  but  justice...it  is  an  emanation   of  virtue;  it is  less  a special  principle  than  a  consequence  of  the  general  principle  of  democracy   applied  to  the  most  pressing  needs  of  our  country. Those  who  did not  agree  with  Robespierre  and  his Committee  on  Public Safety  were  obviously  enemies  of the  Revolution  and  of the  new   order.   They  would  have  to be  brought  into  line,  either  through   indoctrination  or through  the  ultimate  liberation­ ­execution.   The   Single  Will must  prevail, and  its interpreter  was  Robespierre. The  Jacobins  looked  at  England  and  found  it to be  a country  without  a  guiding  principle,  without  a Single  Will.  It was  a country  with  severe   class  distinctions,  horrible  poverty,  inequality,  and  nothing  to hold  the   nation  together  but  competing  selfish  interests  and  a hodge­ podge  of  irrational  habits  and  obsolete  customs. How, the  revolutionaries  asked,  could  France  attain  harmony  and   social solidarity?  Their answer:  eliminate  competing  selfish  interests. Robespierre  sought  to bring  harmony  by bringing  unanimity.   Clearly  if  all agree  on a topic,  all are  in harmony  on what  to do.  But the   ignorant  people  and  the  corrupt­ ­the  aristocracy­ ­do not  know  what   they  really  want,  what  is really  or truly  good  for them.   So they  must   defer  to those  who  do know.   Those  would  be  the  Jacobins,  actually   the  Committee  on Public Safety,  actually  the  leader  of them  all­­ Robespierre.   He would  interpret  what  was  in the  best  interests  of the   people. The  revolution  was  the  trigger  for ideas  and  movements  dedicated  to  egalitarian  and  libertarian  societies,  but  the  revolution  was  not  their   realization.   In other  words,  the  revolution  failed  to deliver  the  kinds  of  equality  and  justice  that  many  sought.   They  would  have  to devise   other  means  and  other  expressions  to realize  those  ideals.   Some  of  those  other  means  and  expressions  constitute  the  body  of ideology   known  as  utopian  socialism. 8 Utopian  socialism The  French  Revolution  thus  represented  a great  watershed:  It was  of  great  significance  both  for those  who  feared  its results  and  what  it  could  mean  and  for those  who  longed  for a better  example  of what   such  revolutionary  changes  could  bring  about. Those  who  feared  it were  conservatives   like Burke;  those  who  favored  it but  wanted  something  different  or  something  more  were  socialists,  utopian  socialists. Utopian  socialism  arises  in reaction  to capitalism  and  opposes  both   conservatism  and  the  excesses  of the  liberalism  of the  French   Revolution.    The  utopian  argued  against  the  liberal  emphasis  on 1) the  individual  and 2) on private  property, but  not  necessarily  against  reason.  And the  utopian  socialists  argued  against  the  conservative  view  of  human  nature  as  one  that  is fixed.   Socialists  didn’t  see  human  nature   as  fixed,  but  they  did accept  something  like Burke’s  idea  about  the   importance  of social influences  on character.   But where  Burke   thought  that  a certain  kind  of social order  prevented  base  human   nature  from  expressing  itself, utopian  socialists  believed  that  the   proper  social conditions  could  actually  re­form,  reshape,  and  even   create  a new  kind  of person.  The  societies  socialists  have  in mind  are   thus  radically  different  from  the  societies  of conservatives.   Utopian   socialists  see  society  helping  to change  peoples'  basic  traits   fundamentally. The  utopian  socialists  had  learned  from  Rousseau  that  it was  not  all  forms  of private  property  that  were  evil­­not  all property  was  theft.    Only property  based  on interest,  rent,  and  profits­ ­that  was  held  only  to make  money­ ­was  theft.   Personal  property,  used  by families  for  their  own  use,  acquired  by people's  own  labor,  was  acceptable  private   property. 9 Change  is what  utopian  socialism  was  all about.   All wanted  an  end  to  competition  and  inequality,  to exploitation  of the  working  man,  and  to  excessive  profiteering.   But how  to  achieve  this ?  This is where  they   differed. But they  agreed  that  a change  in social circumstances  would  result  in  creating  new  men  and  new  women,  citizens  with  energy,  verve,  and   character. All agreed  on the  power  of education  for effecting  positive  change;   and  all were  social  engineers , trying  to create  the  proper  conditions   and  proper  social organization  so that  humans  could  attain  perfection,   both  morally  and  materially. PERFECTION WAS THEIR GOAL, OF INDIVIDUALS AND SOCIETY.  A  PROPERLY ORDERED SOCIETY WOULD PRODUCE PERFECTLY  FULFILLED AND DEVELOPED PERSONS.   To achieve  this,  the  utopian  socialists  became  social engineers. What  we  shall see  in most  utopian  socialism  is a set  of values  built  around  cooperation,  decentralization,  and  workers'  control.   This  socialism  stressed   • the  social rather  than  the  selfish,   •the  community  rather  than  the  individual,   • strict  social controls  on the  accumulation  and  use  of  private  property  rather  than  laissez­ faire,  and   • either  economic  equality  or at  least  rewards  distributed   according  to merit  or according  to need. These  early  socialists  did not  believe  that  violent  revolution  was  the   way  to bring  lasting  change.   They  believed  that  one  of the  central   lessons  of the  French  Revolution  had  been  that  the  path  of violence   had  failed. Utopian  socialists,  while  opposing  revolution  as  a way  to social  change,  differed  on how  precisely  to achieve  their  socialist  results;   they  divided  especially  over  whether  the  political  power  should  be   centralized  or decentralized . 10 But early  socialism  was  also  marked  by a host  of bizarre  characters   who  proposed  sometimes  crazy  social schemes  for overcoming  the   evils of capitalism.   These  characters  and  their  ideas  give  us  the   adjective  "utopian."   But not  all of them  were  cranks.   Some,  such  as   the  three  we  shall study,  offered  insights  into  the  place  and   importance  of equality  in politics  and  society. 11 ROBERT OWEN Robert  Owen,  "the  benevolent  Mr. Owen  of New Lanark,"  as  he  was   called,  was  a man  who  from  scratch  became  a great  and  wealthy   capitalist  and  who  as  a capitalist  became  a violent  opponent  of private   property.   He not  only advocated  benevolence  towards  workers   because  it would  pay  off, but  also  urged  the  abolition  of money. Robert  Owen  was  born  into  poverty  in Wales  in 1771.   He left school  at   the  age  of nine  and  became  an  apprentice  to a linen  draper.   But by  18  he  had  decided  to go to Manchester,  and  there,  on the  strength  of  £100  he  had  borrowed  from  his brother,  he  set  up  a small company   manufacturing  textile  machines. At age  20  he  became  the  wonder  of the  textile  world.   One  Mr.  Drinkwater,  the  owner  of a large  spinning  company,  hired  Owen  as  his  factory  manager.   Within  six months  Drinkwater's  company  was  so  prosperous  that  he  offered  Owen  a quarter  interest  in the  entire   business.   This was  only the  beginning  of a lucrative  career. A few years  later  Owen  heard  that  a set  of run­down  mills was  for sell  in New  Lanark , a Scottish  village  about  a day's  journey  from   Glasgow.   Owen,  who  had  lots  of ideas  for running  mills, borrowed  the   capital  and  bought  the  mills.   Within  10  years  New Lanark  was  world­famous,  having  received   over  25,000  visitors  from  across  the  globe,  including  Czar  Nicholas  I of  Russia.   And by then  New Lanark  had  made  Owen  a fortune  of at  least   £60,000   New  Lanark Owen  saw  New Lanark  as  an  opportunity  to test  out  his theories  for  advancing  humanity  as  a whole.   He was  convinced  that  the   environment  shaped  human  character,  and  that  if the  environment   was  changed,  a true  paradise  on earth  could  be  attained.    He established  a) good  working  conditions,  b) increased  workers'   wages,  and  c) shared  profits  with  them.   The  streets  of New Lanark   were  tidy,  as  were  the  houses.   Every  working  family lived  in two ­ room  houses—then  unheard  of;  there  were  no children  in the   factories;  they  were  instead  in the  schoolhouse  studying,  singing,  and   dancing.   NO child's  questions  were  ever  unanswered,  and  corporal   punishment  was  never  inflicted. In the  factory  workers  worked  a short  10  and  3/4  hour  day;   there  was  no punishment,  and  the  manager's  door  was  always  open  to   anyone  who  had  a complaint. 12 Indeed,  New Lanark  was  the  basis  of much  of the  early  thinking,  liberal   and  socialist,  about  a welfare  state.   He showed  that  squalor  and   abuse  were  not  the  only outcome  of capitalist  enterprise.    It is important  to note  that  Owen  was  not  philosophically   opposed  to capitalism,  but  was  opposed  to the  results  of unbridled   competition  and  greed. What  made  all of this  work, argued  Owen,  was  not  simply  better  living   and  working  conditions,  but  also  the  system  of character  formation.    This system  was  based  on "the  voice  of  Reason,"  as  Owen  called  it.   Reason  was  Owen's  reason—he  required  that  all submit  to his wise   commands.   Thus  he  established  New Lanark  as  a model  of  enlightened  paternalism .  What  he  said  was  the  rule,  but  it was  all  done  for the  good  of the  workers. Owen's  business  was  such  a success  that  a committee  formed  by the   Dukes  of York and  Kent  looking  into  social distress  asked  him  to  present  his views  on how  to overcome  poverty.    Owen  argued  that  the  solution  to poverty  lay in making  the  poor   productive.   To this  end  he  advocated  forming  "Villages  of   Cooperation " in which  800  to 1200  persons  would  work together  on  farm  and  in factory  to form  a self­sustaining  unit.   The  families  would   live in houses  with  each  family in a private  apartment  but  sharing   common  sitting  rooms,  reading  rooms,  and  kitchens.    Children  from  the  age  of three  would  be  in local boarding  schools,   away  from  their  parent,  to be  assured  of an  education  that  would  mold   their  characters  properly.  Parents,  who  were  mostly  workers  from   inner­ city factories,  could  not  be  trusted  with  impressing  upon  their   young  those  ideas  essential  to strong  moral  character.   Parents   operated  with  too  many  false  ideas,  and  they  were  not  sufficiently   trained  to be  reasonable.    Around  the  school  would  be  gardens  that  the  children  would  tend,  and   around  those  schools  would  be  fields  where  older  children  would  grow   crops.   Finally, when  young  adults,  they  would  move  into  the  village's   cooperative  farms  and  factories.   The  villages  would  be  far removed  from  the  corrupting  influences  of  the  working­ class  environment.   They  would  have  rural  factories.   It  was  the  social environment,  more  specifically urban  industry,  that  had   corrupted  people.   Owen  knew  first­hand  the  horrors  of factory  life and   the  way  it degraded  the  men,  women,  and  children  who  were  trapped   in it. 13 Persons,  thought  Owen,  were  by nature  loving  and  good.   They  were   also  rational  if they  could  just  be  instructed  in the  correct  association   of ideas.   The  ideas  to be  presented,  of course,  were  his.  Remember,   his is a system  of enlightened  paternalism  in which  workers  who  have   never  been  asked  to think  for themselves  cannot  be  expected  to know   how  to live productive,  virtuous  lives  when  left to their  own  devices.    Thus  Owen  would  train  them  properly.   Because  parents  who  had   worked  all their  lives  in the  factories  and  on the  farms  owned  and   operated  by exploitative  capitalists  could  not  be  expected  or trusted   to instill in their  children  the  proper  ideas,  Owen  HAD to separate  the   children  from  the  parents. Most  of the  Dukes’  committee  members  were  not  surprised  by Owen's   suggestions—he  did have  a reputation  by then—but  th
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