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Strong Individualism Vs. Strong Government This Essay Is About Wither Or Not Society Should Embrace Altruism And Whether Its The Governments Place To Do So Or The Individuals.

1499 words - 6 pages

Society has gone through its ups and downs, but what is it that makes society turn for the better or worse? Many philosophers have explained what they think is wrong with society in their point in time and argued that it boils down to a reign of a strong government or a rise in the strength of individualism. Each author states their viewpoints of how the government should or should not intervene with society and if they believe that the strength of the individual should be endorsed. Their viewpoints range from the idea of abolishing the government entirely to strengthen individualistic thought, to the thought that everyone should completely devote their life to their country. In this paper, I will first examine the position in favor of strong individualism and then the position in favor of a strong government in determining which is better for society. Also, I will analyze each author’s argument to show their viewpoint and their reasoning to back it up. In doing so, I hope to show that there are many different theories of how to better society.In the fight for stronger individualism amongst society, radical anarchist Alexander Berkman believes that the government should be abolished entirely. In The ABC of Anarchy, he complains about what individuals are required to do in their lives, work. He argues that people are forced to work because they have no other choice in life. As he states, “You can’t work for yourself; under the capitalist industrial system you must work for an employer” (Berkman 14). A working class person cannot be self employed. On the contrary, they must be employed by someone of the upper class in society. It is a spiral of depression in where the factory worker works for a wage, where as the factory owner receives all of the profits and benefits from the workers production. To stop this from happening Berkman believes that the government should be abolished because it is letting the capitalists control the worker’s lives. He explains, “Capitalism robs and exploits the whole of the people; the laws legalize and uphold this capitalist robbery; the government uses one part of the people to aid and protect the capitalists in robbing the whole of the people” (21). To clarify this statement Berkman believes that the government gives the capitalists control of the working class; therefore Berkman is in favor to stronger individualism rather than a stronger government.Also fighting for stronger individualism among society is author John Stuart Mill, who claims that the government is infringing on the rights of individuals. Mill feels as though the upper class is using the government to control and prohibit individual’s rights. He believes, “No such person will ever feel that others have a right to control him in his concerns” (Mill 83). He doesn’t believe that government knows what is best for the individual or that the government should be forcing themselves into...

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