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Word Count: 1,517
Rousseau and Plato social contract ideas are extremely different With that the thought of man is different One believes that the true power is in the people while the other believes that the power lies in the government that rules the people Therefore believing that a just man is one that obeys the government Rousseau asserts the idea of the peoples general will be the ideal governing force of the state This idea is the total alienation of each individual to the entire community therefore constructing the Sovereign The collective body rules in the common interest acting without individual bias or selfish concerns to decide the laws that the Sovereign itself is to follow However this concept is flawed because it requires people to put the communitys needs above their own Rousseau distorts basic human nature by committing deceit of assuming people value the common good over their own personal interest Ideally civic politics would be the most important thing to every citizen but in reality it is almost impossible to make a unanimous decision without the influence of self-interest The General Will has good intentions but its spirit would better be carried out through a more attainable concept of democracy Rousseau forms the Social Contract as a way to preserve freedom t hrough self-government by eliminating individual self-interest basing his theory on the optimistic assertion that society will voluntarily follow the General Will However self-interest is the matter of progress and for a state to advance and prosper there must be a government such as the modern form of democracy The fundamental problem-facing mankind according to Rousseau is that Man is born free and everywhere he is in chains His freedom can only be attained when each man is independent and is not ruled by the private interests of any individual or group Until this is accomplished each person is still a slave to others and his freedom is forfeited Man united form
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