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Tue Jul 11 07:28:38 MDT 1995

with Novell_GroupWise; Mon, 10 Jul 1995 20:43:04 -0600
Message-Id: <s00190d7.089 at EMAIL.STATE.UT.US>
X-Mailer: Novell GroupWise 4.1
Date: Mon, 10 Jul 1995 20:08:28 -0600
From: Lisa Rogers <LROGERS at EMAIL.STATE.UT.US>
To: marxism at
Subject:  Private property -Reply

Jerry, there is an interesting communication gap here.  I'll try to
point it out and bridge it a bit.

You take my "worthwhile" to mean something that I do not mean.  I'm
not talking about a "necessary stage of social evolution" or
"worthwhile for the society", never, far from it.  I'm thinking about
an individual taking an action.  I have no good reason to expect that
it will be "good for society".  I mean 'worth it' in terms of
material/social/fitness rewards that are expected to come to the one
who pays the cost.  "Worthwhile" is when the difference between the
cost and benefit is greater than would be expected from alternative

You say that the institution of private property was established
historically.  Well, how?  I mean, of course it has not always
existed, but what are the material circumstances that might increase
the likelihood of people to begin to say?? "This is mine, which means
that you can't touch it without my permission.  I [or we?] claim
exclusive control of all access" ??

When you say "Private property arose because it was a necessary
condition for certain forms of class exploitation", this does not
look like an explanation to me.  I need this type of statement to be
seriously taken apart and explained to me, because it has puzzled me
before.  I think you don't mean that PrivProp was intentionally
planned ahead of time, by those who planned to do the exploitation

But I don't know what it does mean.  Doesn't anybody think it
appropriate to think about how something like PriProp came about?
say, in addition to "necessary for exploitation"?  What might it look
like to people who were living it?  It couldn't pre-exist this
PP-dependent exploitation by very far, could it?  Or else someone
would be paying the costs of the "institution" without anyone getting
something out of it, and nobody would want to do that.

Of course "exploitation is not necessarily worthwhile from the
standpoint of the exploited."  But I'm not even sure that private
property per se is exploitative.

I hope this clarifies some of my intended meaning.

>>> <glevy at>  7/6/95, 03:18am >>>
Whoever said that it is worthwhile for someone to assert a private
property claim?  Worthwhile for whom?  Simply because such
institutions  as private property and the family were established
historically does not  mean that they were worthwhile and necessary
stages in social evolution.

.... Private property arose because it was a necessary  condition for
certain forms of class exploitation.  Exploitation, though,  is not
necessarily worthwhile from the standpoint of the exploited.

     --- from list marxism at ---


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