John Maynard Keynes on Capitalism - Dictionary of Arguments
Rawls I 298
Capitalism/Savings/Accumulation/Inequality/Keynes/Rawls: Keynes writes that the enormous accumulation of capital before World War I could never have come about in a society where prosperity would have been more evenly distributed. (J. M. Keynes, The Economic Consequences of The Peace, (London, 1919), pp. 18-22.)
The society was set up in such a way that the increased income was in the hands of those who tended to spend it least. The newly rich had not been gathered for large expenditures. It was precisely the inequality of wealth distribution that made it possible to build up capital quickly and the steady growth of prosperity for all. Keyne's thesis: this was the main justification of the capitalist system. If the rich had now spent their new prosperity on themselves, the regime would have been rejected as unreasonable.
RawlsVsKeynes: there are more efficient ways to increase prosperity than the one described by Keynes, which is only valid under certain circumstances. But the essential point here is that Keynes' justification can be reversed to improve the situation of the working class. Keynes presumably claims that the circumstances could not have been changed to the detriment of the disadvantaged. But no matter what he actually meant, Keynes does not say that the hardship of the poor would have been justified by better living conditions of future generations._____________Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution. Translations: Dictionary of Arguments The note [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.
John Maynard Keynes
The Economic Consequences of the Peace New York 1920
A Theory of Justice: Original Edition Oxford 2005