Secondly, if the philosophers and soldiers are to act according to justice they must have nothing to do with ‘Property’ which is the outward manifestation of “Appetite” which in turn is the element assigned to the farmer class.
For their sustenance the guardians should depend on the peasant class. Thirdly, he believes that the most significant factor that leads to corruption and degradation in a state is the combination of economic power with political power. Therefore, he pleads that those who exercise political power should have no economic motives and those who are engaged in economic activities should have no share in political power. According to Barker, “Plato starts from practical considerations and in this sense his communism is the most practical feature of his ideal state”.
Plato’s purpose in envisaging communism is to produce the greatest degree of unity in the state. Private property was a stumbling block in the way of such unity. Hence Plato would like to abolish the property itself. Plato’s communism of property is only a secondary method of bringing about unity in the state. The primary method is his scheme of education. Plato feared that the possession of private property would give rise to selfish considerations and deviate the attention of the philosopher rulers from public service.
He therefore deprived the two ruling classes of the right to property. In the words of Sabine, Plato felt that “To cure the greed of rulers there is no way short of denying them the right to call anything their own”. For Plato the rulers should live in barracks and have meals at a common table. They should not possess private property because it was bound to undermine the value of virtue, which was the most important ingredient of the ruling class.
He repeatedly insists that his communism is meant only for the guardian class. Thus, says Barker “Platonic communism is ascetic and just for that reason it is also aristocratic.” It is imposed on the best and only the best.