Secular Politics and Economic Democracy

QUESTION: Secular Politics – Humanism and Economic Democracy

ANSWER:

The Secular Humanist goal of equalization extends from politics to economics. V.M. Tarkunde says, “A genuine political democracy is not possible in the absence of economic democracy.”1 Many Humanists are socialists who favor the redistribution of wealth since the unequal distribution of goods hinders the process of evolution. Anderson says that “when people are deprived of the fundamental necessities, as are millions of Americans and even more millions of human beings in other countries, their capacity for development is frustrated at the most basic level.”2 Thus, Secular Humanists see the redistribution of wealth as a necessary step toward further evolutionary development.

Secular Politics – A Cooperative Economy
Lamont defines economic democracy as “the right of every adult to a useful job at a decent wage or salary, to general economic security and opportunity, to an equitable share in the material goods of this life, and to a proportionate voice in the conduct of economic affairs.”3

Kurtz proposes a rationale for economic democracy and a means to achieve it: “We believe...that the more affluent nations have a moral obligation to increase technological and economic assistance so that their less developed neighbors may become more self-sufficient. We need to work out some equitable forms of taxation on a worldwide basis to help make this a reality.”4 Tarkunde suggests “a cooperative economy in which the workers in an undertaking will be the owners of the means of production employed in that undertaking is undoubtedly the most democratic economic institution conceived so far.”5

Notes:

Rendered with permission from the book, Understanding the Times: The Collision of Today’s Competing Worldviews (Rev. 2nd ed), David Noebel, Summit Press, 2006. Compliments of John Stonestreet, David Noebel, and the Christian Worldview Ministry at Summit Ministries. All rights reserved in the original.

1 V.M. Tarkunde, “An Outline of Radical Humanism,” The Humanist (July/Aug. 1988): 13.

2 Walter Truett Anderson, Politics and the New Humanism (Pacific Palisades, CA: Goodyear Publishing Company, 1973), 141.

3 Corliss Lamont, The Philosophy of Humanism (New York, NY: Frederick Ungar, 1982), 267.

4 Humanist Manifesto II (Buffalo, NY: Prometheus Books, 1980), 22.

5 Tarkunde, “An Outline of Radical Humanism,” 13.

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