Hi there, would you like to get such a paper? What he means by that is, that God made this world for man, and when he made it he gave man the right to use what is in this world to his benefit. Despite the many inconsistencies which have been the bane of generations of Locke scholars, MacPherson claims that Locke’s political theory becomes completely intelligible and consistent once Locke’s hidden assumptions are made explicit. Rousseau's Views. Surely the elements Strauss chooses to emphasize are present in Locke’s writings. website. In the broad sense he suggests by it the right to life, liberty and estate. In Chapter 5, “Of Property,” Locke declares that every man owns himself and his own labor. In particular, even labor cannot give people property rights when others do not have “enough and as good” (§27). From passages such as these, Kendall concludes that Locke means to justify property ownership by the social benefits it confers, that the expediency arguments take precedence over the natural right arguments for property. MacPherson also correctly discerns that the introduction of money transforms the character of the limits to property ownership. In this important sense, government is subservient not to the economy per se, but to the wills of the people who above all desire to protect their lives, liberties and estate. It is generally taken to refer to the lustful greed of selfish men and used to argue Locke’s aversion to acquisitive behavior. Locke’s caution with regard to his political views reflects his rational response to the political uncertainties of his age, and provides acceptable evidence of his desire to write as much as possible in the language of the majority view. Without the laws that are made by the government there would be many problems with property rights. This is especially true in one of the most debated and controversial areas of Locke’s political philosophy, his theory of property. People still have the right to have any property they want as long as they can afford it and as long as it is obtained properly. When Locke feared his rooms would be searched, he initially hid his draft of the two treatises with Tyrrell. In seventeenth century England, property, even landed property ownership was fairly widespread, and when one considers the forms of property not tied to land (e.g. Seliger is unique among Locke scholars in that he sees no problem with Locke’s assumption that men would want to enlarge their possessions. Did he approve of acquisitive behavior? According to Strauss, Locke really believed there is no genuine natural law, only conventional law, and there are “no natural principles of understanding: all knowledge is acquired; all knowledge depends on labor and is labor.” Locke in this reading is a hedonist, for whom the greatest good is “in having those things which produce the greatest pleasure” —a materialist hedonist at that. Locke nevertheless continued vehemently to deny his authorship of theTreatises until he was on his death bed and had nothing further to lose by disclosure. Where this is no longer the case, perfectly honorable men could be unable to settle disputes about property ownership when each is judge in his own case. Here, Kendall has gone too far. I feel that he was extremely accurate in some of his views and he is an important figure in world history. MacPherson’s study of Locke was presented within the context of a treatise on The Political Theory of Possessive Individualism in which he argued that the distinctive feature of the individualism espoused by the classical liberal philosophers was its possessive nature: its focus on the importance of private property to individualist political philosophy. He believes that in governments, the laws regulate the right of property, and the possession of land is determined by positive constitutions. In the Second Treatise especially, it is generally recognized, Locke argues the case for individual natural rights, limited government depending on the consent of the governed, separation of powers within government, and most radically, the right of people within a society to depose rulers who fail to uphold their end of the social contract. According to Locke, individual property rights change after government was established. The labour of his body, and the work of his hands, we may say, are properly his. As long as nothing spoils in one’s possession, it doesn’t matter how much property anyone owns. John Locke’s major political analysis, The Two Treatises of Government (1690), has long been hailed as a seminal work in the history of political liberalism. How one decides which statements Locke means and which are unimportant or slips is another question. Labor, for Locke, includes picking up acorns from the ground, gathering apples from wild trees, tracking deer in the forest, and catching fish in the ocean; labor ranges from simple acts of appropriation to production involving planning and effort. Locke could not imagine men living long in a state of nature because he couldn’t imagine those ends being satisfied in a civilized manner without a government to referee disputes and to provide a legal setting. Kendall claims that “when Locke has to choose between the individual’s right of property in that with which he has mixed his labor and the common right of men to their preservation, he unhesitatingly sacrifices the former to the latter.”. The first limit is alluded to when he describes how property is created. His attempt to ground the right to property in natural law was seen to be an important device for asserting the rights of individuals against the state and for limiting the moral authority of the state in a crucial area of human endeavor. Here, he claims, Locke believes that the economic contract, (the agreement to use money) allows men to satisfy irrational desires and distorts intrinsic value of things while the political contract serves to overcome and regulate the anti‐social results of these basically irrational pursuits. Locke does not stress this limitation, but puts most of the force of the limitation on property on his next argument. The second kind of argument in favor of private property is what Kendall calls the expedient. This is clearly not a laissez‐faire policy prescription, yet neither is it an argument for “credit regulation” as Seliger suggests, nor is it typical of an attitude that favors limiting private initiative to “discourage the concentration of capital.” The message of this particular example seems to be that previous attempts to “limit private initiative” led to a perverse result and that England would have been better off had interest rates never been set below market rates in the first place. In 1962, MacPherson published one of the most original and provocative studies of Locke’s political philosophy. To MacPherson, both features of Locke’s work are consistent when it is realized that only property owners are full members of society and therefore have mutual interests which eliminate the need to specifically guarantee individual rights. Why do men want to store wealth when there is originally as much land as anyone could possibly want to work with? MacPherson all argued that Locke was not at all what he was supposed to be, and they thereby opened up a new investigation of the meaning and importance of Locke’s theory of property in his political thought. Even if that were the case, it is not self‐evident that the actual political order is more conducive to equality than the economic order. Was it peaceful or chaotic, poverty stricken or comfortable? Whichever alternative is the case, it is clear that Locke himself would have been horrified by the excesses of the modern welfare state on grounds both of efficiency and equity.