WHAT IS AN EGALITARIAN ECONOMY?
It's not based on money!
[Note: This is how the economy must be to abolish class inequality and prevent it from re-emerging. If you have a better idea how the economy should be in order to prevent class inequality, write to us and we will publish your opinion with our comment.]
[Click here to read how an egalitarian economy would mitigate the Covid-19 pandemic]
[Click here to read how an egalitarian economy would provide good housing for all who contribute reasonably according to ability.]
[Click here to read what is the genuine democracy that goes along with an egalitarian economy.]
As this video of person-on-the-street interviews illustrates, most people want a society with NO RICH AND NO POOR. An egalitarian society is just that.
An egalitarian economy is one that is based on the principle, "From each according to reasonable ability, to each according to need or reasonable desire, with scarce things equitably rationed according to need in a manner democratically determined by the local assembly of egalitarians, which also determines what is reasonable."*
WHAT ABOUT PEOPLE WHO DON'T WANT TO BE IN A SHARING ECONOMY?
In an egalitarian society membership in a sharing economy is voluntary. If somebody (or a family or group of people) doesn't want to be in a sharing economy then they are given (to the extent of availability) as much land or equipment (etc.) as they (or the family or group of people) can personally use (no hired or slave labor is allowed) and they are free to do as they wish with whatever material product they produce, however much that is, including barter all or some of it with anybody.
WHAT ABOUT FREELOADERS?
A freeloader is a person a) who is perfectly capable of contributing reasonably in some way and who would be expected to if they were a member of the sharing economy* but who simply refuses to do so AND b) who also claims the right to take the fruit of the labor of those who do contribute reasonably according to ability. Freeloaders have no right to take anything from the sharing economy for free; they may, however, barter with anybody for things with products or services they might create as discussed in the above paragraph.
WHAT'S THE MOTIVE TO WORK IN A SHARING ECONOMY?
Contrary to the claim of anti-egalitarians that people won't work hard unless they are motivated to get richer than others by doing so, the fact is that the egalitarian economy that replaced the capitalist economy in about half of Spain during the Spanish Revolution of 1936-9 produced MORE wealth than the previous capitalist economy, as you can read about here. People work hard when they're working for shared goals as equals!
Anti-egalitarians also foolishly declare that if everybody who contributes reasonably according to ability has the same right to take for free what they need or reasonably desire, then nobody will do the hard or dangerous or unpleasant jobs that need doing. Guess what! Egalitarian families today--in which all members contribute reasonably according to ability and take for free what they need or reasonably desire--manage quite easily to take out the garbage and do the dishes and house-cleaning. Likewise, people in an egalitarian society can perfectly well figure out how to arrange for similar work to be done without relying on class inequality. Egalitarians would, for example, take into account how unpleasant or dangerous work is when deciding what is a "reasonable contribution according to ability" so that less time in an unpleasant or dangerous kind of work versus more time otherwise would be considered a reasonable contribution.
IS THERE PRIVATE PROPERTY IN AN EGALITARIAN ECONOMY?
Yes, people own and inherit private property in an egalitarian economy and society, as discussed further here.
IS EVERYBODY IDENTICAL IN AN EGALITARIAN ECONOMY?
No, people are not all identical. That's not what equality is all about, as discussed here.
IS THERE CENTRAL PLANNING IN AN EGALITARIAN ECONOMY?
No, there is no central planning with some anti-democratic rulers ordering everybody around like in Communist regimes that are notoriously anti-democratic for the reason discussed here.
How a sharing economy works in more detail is discussed further in "What Replaces the 'Free Market' in a Sharing Economy?"
A sharing economy is based on a very different principle from "If you give me something worth such-and-such I'll give you something in return worth such-and-such," which is the "exchange of equal for equal" principle. Money is extremely useful if the economy is based on the "exchange of equal for equal" principle, but pointless in a sharing economy. The reasons a sharing economy is not based on money (buying and selling) are discussed here and here.
A sharing economy is a way to prevent class inequality in which there are some rich and some poor. Why there should not be some rich and some poor is discussed here.
A boring technical detail about a sharing economy (for those who like thinking about such things) is discussed here.
HAS THERE EVER BEEN SUCH AN ECONOMY FOR REAL?
In about half of Spain in 1936-9 egalitarians (who called themselves anarchists) made a revolution and established what was for the most part an egalitarian money-less economy and society. Read about this here and here. These egalitarians showed that it was very possible to scale up the "from each according to reasonable ability, to each according to need or reasonable desire with scarce things equitably rationed according to need" principle to operate not just at the scale of within a single family (most families are based on this principle even today) but at the scale of a society of millions of people. The egalitarians were militarily defeated by the fascist General Franco, not because their economy did not work but because they made fatal mistakes, that prevented them from having the support of others, that I discuss here.
* Egalitarians, being reasonable people, will no doubt count children and retired elderly and people physically or mentally or for any other reason unable to work as "working reasonably" even though they do no work, and likewise deem it "reasonable work" when people care for their own or other children or for other sick adults or attend school or apprentice programs to learn skills so as to be able to work in the future. Also, being reasonable people, egalitarians will no doubt take into account, when deciding how much work is reasonable, how onerous or unpleasant or dangerous some kinds of work are compared to other kinds.