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The Commons, Capitalism, and the Constitution

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Type: Journal Article
Author: Skouras, George
Journal: Academia.edu
Date: 2015
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10535/10298
Sector: General & Multiple Resources
Social Organization
Region: North America
Subject(s): law
political science
Abstract: The erosion of the Commons in the United States has contributed to the deterioration of community and uprooting of people in order to meet the dynamic demands of capitalism. The unfolding of land use policies in the United States has contributed to the erosion of the common good and community. The push towards individualization, markets, and unrestricted property rights has produced a society of individualists adrift in a wasteland of strip malls, suburbs, and other islands of isolation. The property clauses of the American Constitution have not been sufficient in controlling the profiteers from turning America into a wasteland. The tools that can be found in the Constitution for controlling unrestricted and un-managed property growth are of a minimal nature. Hence, there is a need for a major overhaul of the current Constitution. Once the public good is subordinated to the private good, we have a society of individualists, which is a contradiction of terms. In the United States there has emerged a general opinion over the centuries that the private good should trump the public good. This has been especially evident with regard to property issues. This trend needs to be reversed if America is to be a place where all citizens have a right to exist and to earn a place at the table and enjoy the fruits of the earth.

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