This introductory chapter provides an overview of the recent debate about responsibility and distributivejustice. It traces the recent philosophical focus on distributivejustice to John Rawls and examines two arguments in his work which might be taken to contain the seeds of the focus on responsibility in later theories of distributivejustice. It examines Ronald Dworkin's ‘equality of resources’, the ‘luck egalitarianism’ of Richard Arneson and G. A. Cohen, as well as the criticisms (...) of their work put forward by Elizabeth Anderson, Marc Fleurbaey, Susan Hurley, and Jonathan Wolff. Key concepts such as responsibility (individual and collective), luck (thin and thick; brute and option), control, desert, and equality of opportunity are delineated, and the implementation of responsibility-sensitive accounts of justice is considered. The chapters of this book are positioned in relation to the wider literature on responsibility and distributivejustice, and a brief outline of the chapters is provided. (shrink)
In "Torts, Egalitarianism and DistributiveJustice" (Ashgate, 2007), Tsachi Keren-Paz presents impressingly detailed analysis that bolsters the case in favour of incremental tort law reform. However, although this book's greatest strength is the depth of analysis offered, at the same time supporters of radical law reform proposals may interpret the complexity of the solution that is offered (and its respective cost) as conclusive proof that tort law can only take adequate account of egalitarian aims at an unacceptably high (...) cost. (shrink)
The ideal of distributivejustice as a means of ensuring fair distribution of social opportunities is a cornerstone of contemporary feminist theory. Feminists from various disciplines have developed arguments to support the redistribution of the work of care through institutional mechanisms. I discuss the limits of such distribution under the conditions of theories that do not idealize human agents as independent beings. People’s reliance on care, understood as a response to needs, is pervasive and infuses almost all human (...) interaction. I argue that the effect of care on shaping the social opportunities of all individuals is huge, although often invisible. Much of the optimism of theories of distributivejustice comes from ignoring or downplaying the way in which care influences most factors of social success. Jonathan Wolff distinguished between three types of resources whose fair distribution is important: internal, external and structural. Care, I argue, does not fit well in any of these types. Inseparably interwoven with relational realities, care cuts across these categories and thus poses a challenge to the feasibility of equal chances. I focus on the under-analyzed issue of bad care and show how difficult it is to dismantle legacies of bad care. Their effect on even close-to-ideal social arrangements is too significant to be disregarded, yet very difficult to tackle through institutional mechanisms. A commitment to certain elements of individual ethics – as opposed to merely political institutions – is required in order to bridge the gap between ideal theories of justice and feasible practical aims. (shrink)
The problem of standard-of-care in clinical research concerns the level of care that investigators ought to provide to research subjects in the control arm of their clinical trials. Commentators differ sharply on whether subjects in trials conducted in lower income countries should be provided with the same level of care as subjects in trials conducted in higher income countries. I consider an argument that commentators have employed on both sides of this debate: professional role arguments. These arguments claim to justify (...) a conclusion to the standard-of-care problem solely by appeal to the professional obligations that investigators possess. I argue that prominent versions of professional role arguments cannot justify a solution to the problem of standard-of-care that is both determinate and reasonable simply by appeal to the professional obligations of investigators. Instead, to do so, one must also (1) determine the level of care or types of treatment that individuals are entitled to as a matter of distributivejustice, and (2) identify which agents possess the duties that correspond to these entitlements. The level of care that investigators owe to subjects in the control arm of their clinical trials is thus in part dependent on the level of care that these subjects are entitled to as a matter of distributivejustice, and whether it is the investigators who possess the corresponding distributive obligation to provide them with the care that they are entitled to. (shrink)
What is the appropriate criterion to use for distributivejustice? Is it efficiency, need, contribution, entitlement, equality, effort, or ability? Globalization and Economic Ethics maintains that far from being rival principles of distributivejustice, efficiency and need satisfaction are, in fact, complementary norms in our emerging knowledge economy. After all, human capital plays the central role in effecting and sustaining long-term efficiency in the Digital Age. This book explores the vital link between human capital formation and (...) allocative efficiency using the properties of the market and the knowledge economy as analytical tools. (shrink)
I argue that existing views in the political equality debate are inadequate. I propose an alternative approach to equality and argue its superiority to the competing approaches. I apply the approach to some issues in global justice relating to global poverty and to the inability of some countries to develop as they would like. In this connection I discuss institutions of international trade, sovereign debt and global reserves and I focus particularly on the WTO, IMF and World Bank.
Under what conditions are people responsible for their choices and the outcomes of those choices? How could such conditions be fostered by liberal societies? Should what people are due as a matter of justice depend on what they are responsible for? For example, how far should healthcare provision depend on patients' past choices? What values would be realized and which hampered by making justice sensitive to responsibility? Would it give people what they deserve? Would it advance or hinder (...) equality? The explosion of philosophical interest in such questions has been fuelled by increased focus on individual responsibility in political debates. Political philosophers, especially egalitarians, have responded to such developments by attempting to map out the proper place for responsibility in theories of justice. This book both reflects on these recent developments in normative political theory and moves the debate forwards. (shrink)
The Pigou-Dalton (PD) principle recommends a non-leaky, non-rank-switching transfer of goods from someone with more goods to someone with less. This Article defends the PD principle as an aspect of distributivejustice—enabling the comparison of two distributions, neither completely equal, as more or less just. It shows how the PD principle flows from a particular view, adumbrated by Thomas Nagel, about the grounding of distributivejustice in individuals’ “claims.” And it criticizes two competing frameworks for thinking (...) about justice that less clearly support the principle: the veil-of-ignorance framework, and Larry Temkin’s proposal that fairer distributions are those concerning which individuals have fewer “complaints.” -/- The Article also clarifies the relation between the PD principle and prioritarianism. Prioritarians will surely endorse the PD principle (with the “good” individual well-being), but they are also committed to a distinct axiom of separability: the moral value of someone’s well-being change does not depend upon her position relative to others. The PD principle neither implies separability, nor is implied by it. Although prioritarianism is very plausible, the case for the PD principle is yet more compelling than for the combination of that principle with separability. In discussing prioritarianism, we should differentiate between these two, logically independent aspects of the view. -/- . (shrink)
The theory of justice pioneered by John Rawls explores a simple idea--that the concern of distributivejustice is to compensate individuals for misfortune. Some people are blessed with good luck, some are cursed with bad luck, and it is the responsibility of society--all of us regarded collectively--to alter the distribution of goods and evils that arises from the jumble of lotteries that constitutes human life as we know it. Some are lucky to be born wealthy, or into (...) a favorable socializing environment, or with a tendency to be charming and intelligent and persevering and the like. These people are likely to be successful in the economic marketplace and to achieve success in other important ways over the course of their lives. On the other hand some people are, as we say, born to lose. Distributivejustice stipulates that the lucky should transfer some or all of their gains due to luck to the unlucky. (shrink)
Many anticosmopolitan Rawlsians argue that since the primary subject of justice is society's basic structure, and since there is no global basic structure, the scope of justice is domestic. This paper challenges the anticosmopolitan basic structure argument by distinguishing three interpretations of what Rawls meant by the basic structure and its relation to justice, corresponding to the cooperation (Freeman), pervasive impact (Buchanan), and coercion (Blake, Nagel) theories of distributivejustice. On the cooperation theory, it is (...) true that there is no global basic structure, but the basic structure turns out to be only an instrumental condition for realizing justice, and not an existence condition that must be met before demands of justice arise. On the pervasive impact and coercion theories, the basic structure is indeed an existence condition, but there exists a global basic structure. The upshot is that on any plausible interpretation of Rawls's account of the basic structure, Rawlsian justice is global in scope. (shrink)
Cosmopolitans argue that the account of human rights and distributivejustice in John Rawls's The Law of Peoples is incompatible with his argument for liberal justice. Rawls should extend his account of liberal basic liberties and the guarantees of distributivejustice to apply to the world at large. This essay defends Rawls's grounding of political justice in social cooperation. The Law of Peoples is drawn up to provide principles of foreign policy for liberal peoples. (...) Human rights are among the necessary conditions for social cooperation, and so long as a decent people respect human rights, a common good, and the Law of Peoples, it is not the role of liberal peoples to impose upon well-ordered decent peoples liberal liberties they cannot endorse. Moreover, the difference principle is not an allocative or alleviatory principle, but applies to design property and other basic social institutions necessary to economic production, exchange and consumption. It presupposes political cooperation—a legislative body to actively apply it, and a legal system to apply it to. There is no feasible global state or global legal system that could serve these roles. Finally, the difference principle embodies a conception of democratic reciprocity that is only appropriate to cooperation among free and equal citizens who are socially productive and politically autonomous. a Footnotesa I am grateful to K. C. Tan for many helpful discussions and criticisms of this essay. I am also grateful to the other contributors to this volume for their comments, and to Ellen Paul for her many helpful suggestions in preparing the final version of this essay. (shrink)
Critical response to John Rawls’s The Law of Peoples has been surprisingly harsh.1 Most of the complaints center upon Rawls’ claim that there are no obligations of distributivejustice among nations. Many of Rawls’s critics evidently had been hoping for a global application of the difference principle, so that wealthier nations would be bound to assign lexical priority to the development of the poorest nations, or perhaps the primary goods endowment of the poorest citizens of any nation. Their (...) subsequent disappointment reveals that, while the reception of Rawls’s political philosophy has been very broad, it has not been especially deep. Rawls has very good reason for denying that there are obligations of distributivejustice in an international context. A global application of the difference principle would have been in tension with a number of very central features of his political philosophy. There is a sense in which Rawls’s claims about distributivejustice, in The Law of Peoples, are under-argued. But this is primarily because they follow almost immediately from more fundamental commitments that he has adopted over the years: the idea of the basic structure as subject, the requirement that conceptions of justice be freestanding, the status that is assigned to the principle of efficiency, not to mention the overall pragmatism that informs his project. By drawing upon these themes in Rawls’ work, I will try to show that one cannot deny the view of international relations outlined in The Law of Peoples without rejecting Rawls’s approach to political philosophy as a whole (in all contexts, including the domestic one). (shrink)
Amartya Sen is a renowned economist who has also made important contributions to philosophical thinking about distributivejustice. These contributions tend to take the form of criticism of inadequate positions and insistence on making distinctions that will promote clear thinking about the topic. Sen is not shy about making substantive normative claims, but thus far he has avoided commitment to a theory of justice, in the sense of a set of principles that specifies what facts are relevant (...) for policy choice and determines, given a full characterization of any situation in terms of these relevant facts, what ought to be done in that situation. Moreover, Sen has expressed skepticism about the existence of a fully adequate theory in this sense. According to Sen there is a plurality of moral considerations that bear on choice of action and policy and no particular reason to think that weights can be attached nonarbitrarily to each consideration to yield a theory. (shrink)
International borders concentrate opportunities in some societies while limiting them in others. Borders also prevent those in the less favored societies from gaining access to opportunities available in the more favored ones. Both distributive effects of borders are treated here within a comprehensive framework. I argue that each state should have broad discretion under international law to grant or deny entry to immigration seekers; but more favored countries that find themselves under immigration pressure should be legally obligated to fund (...) development assistance for countries that generate immigration pressure. Funding should be subject to conditions of fair and effective use in recipient countries, and should aim at a near-term target of immigration-pressure equilibrium. Equilibrium obtains between two countries when, given appropriate background circumstances, the same proportion of individuals in each manifests a preference to migrate to the other. If meeting the equilibrium target in the short term would be to the long-term disadvantage of the worst-off countries, then a Pareto-superior alternative target supersedes. It mandates development assistance at the level that yields the most favorable human development projections for the worstoff countries. An implementable set of institutions is described that can achieve the equilibrium goal in the long term without unduly sacrificing other important ends, including economic growth, political stability, cultural integrity, the political autonomy of distinct societies, and their proper accountability for policy choices. Key Words: global justice immigration borders development distributivejustice development assistance equality international law cosmopolitanism. (shrink)
Amartya Sen is a renowned economist who has also made important contributions to philosophical thinking about distributivejustice. These contributions tend to take the form of criticism of inadequate positions and insistence on making distinctions that will promote clear thinking about the topic. Sen is not shy about making substantive normative claims, but thus far he has avoided commitment to a theory of justice, in the sense of a set of principles that specifies what facts are relevant (...) for policy choice and determines, given a full characterization of any situation in terms of these relevant facts, what ought to be done in that situation. Moreover, Sen has expressed skepticism about the existence of a fully adequate theory in this sense. According to Sen there is a plurality of moral considerations that bear on choice of action and policy and no particular reason to think that weights can be attached nonarbitrarily to each consideration to yield a theory.1 “Sen’s proposal is that distributivejustice entails equalizing midfare levels across persons,” writes John Roemer.2 “Other things being equal,” one has to add by way of correction to Roemer’s formulation. Sen holds that we should be concerned with the extent of people’s capability or freedom to attain midfare as well as the midfare level actually reached. Sen holds that distributive values.. (shrink)
This paper develops my position on the ethics of price gouging in response to Jeremy Snyder's article, "What's the Matter with Price Gouging." First, it explains how the "nonworseness claim" supports the moral permissibility of price gouging, even if it does not show that price gougers are morally virtuous agents. Second, it argues that questions about price gouging and distributivejustice must be answered in light of the relevant possible institutional alternatives, and that Snyder's proposed alternatives to price (...) gouging fare worse on the dimension of justice than a system in which goods are allocated by a system of market prices. (shrink)
Here is a picture of a society that one might suppose to be ideally just in its distributive practices: All members of the society are equally free to live in any way that they might choose, and institutions are arranged so that the equal freedom available to all is at the highest feasible level. What, if anything, is wrong with this picture? One might object against the insistence on equal freedom for all and propose that freedom should instead be (...) maximinned, or leximinned, or maximized, or distributed according to some alternative norm. In this essay I wish to set aside the choice of distributive norm. The question for this essay is whether freedom in any sense is the aspect of people's condition that is the right basis of interpersonal comparison for a theory of distributivejustice. I approach this question by analyzing some rival conceptions of freedom. (shrink)
We cannot conclude from the assumptions that justice is a virtue and desert is an ingredient in justice that desert claims themselves express a virtue. It could be that desert is morally neutral, or even immoral, and that there are other aspects of justice which make it all-in-all virtuous. We need, in other words, an independent moral justification of desert and desert-based emotions. In this paper I take on the challenge of articulating and defending a utilitarian justification (...) of desert in distributivejustice. I argue, first, that while there may be ways of accommodating desert-concerns in liberal theory, this cannot, in the view of liberals themselves, be done without considerable cost to the ideals that are closest to their hearts. By contrast, I suggest that a deceptively simple utilitarian (Millian) defence of desert can be made to work. Finally, I attempt to surmount various possible objections that might be raised against my utilitarian justification and conclude that none of them confutes it. (shrink)
Distributivejustice concerns the fair distribution of the benefits and burdens of social cooperation. Opposition to higher rates of taxation, or even existing levels of taxation, are often made on grounds that such taxes are unfair burdens. This fairness argument can be given a number of further, more specific, formulations. Libertarians like Robert Nozick, for example, argue that taxation of income is unfair because it violates individual rights. Libertarians invoke an entitlement argument which presumes that the appropriate baseline (...) of property rights is pretax income. Others take issue with specific policies that are supported by taxation, such as welfare provisions, and argue that welfare reform is necessary as tax burdens are only legitimate when they satisfy some form of reciprocity thesis. In this review article I critically assess these arguments. The recent publication of The Cost of Rights: Why Liberty Depends on Taxes, The Myth of Ownership: Taxes and Justice, and The Civic Minimum: On the Rights and Obligations of Economic Citizenship help shed some light on each of these different arguments that are often invoked in defence of tax cuts. These three books are a welcome addition to debates about distributivejustice as they help bridge the gap between normative theory and public policy. In addition to raising doubts about the arguments that taxation is unfair, I examine themes that raise important questions about taxation and justice- private property, welfare reform and inheritance. An examination of these themes should make it clear that the real challenge facing justice-theorists is to take scarcity seriously and thus I emphasis the shortcomings of simply endorsing a âcost-blindâ rights-oriented conception of justice. Such a conception of justice currently dominates debates in normative political theory. (shrink)
The maintenance of economic equality can easily seem to depend on participants caring more for impartial values such as distributivejustice than they are morally required to do. A liberal morality in which partial concerns for the interests of oneself or one's loved ones are given some scope might seem to permit people to refrain from doing what is impartially best unless they are compensated, even though compensation would produce inequality. This tension between liberal morality and egalitarianism is (...) often exaggerated by a failure to consider the limits of permissible partiality even in a liberal, or partiality-friendly, morality. The option of partiality has limits; it cannot be exercised no matter what. I argue that partial concerns will often be overruled morally if some burdensome work would be good enough from an impartial standpoint. This idea of leveraged enhancement - intentionally enhancing the agent-neutral value of work that would otherwise be optional - has important normative consequences both for personal morality and for the design of social institutions with an eye to distributivejustice. (shrink)
Some of the best philosophers do not hold academic appointments in philosophy departments. Wouldn't you rather have the ghost of Frank Ramsey (the Cambridge mathematician who died in the 1920s) as a hall mate instead of some of your current colleagues? Confining our attention to the living, we find some economists among the more philosophically inclined intellectuals. The best of these fellow traveling economistphilosophers are the Nobel Prize winner Amartya Sen and also John Roemer. In the early 1980s Roemer did (...) brilliant work on the analytical foundations of Marxist theory. He has also accomplished an imaginative retooling of the Lange-Lerner models of market socialism. For the past dozen years or so Roemer has been thinking and writing about distributivejustice. This work has culminated in the two impressive books that are the subject of this review essay. Theories of DistributiveJustice is explicitly a bridge-building effort. Roemer announces that his aim is to provide a philosophical perspective on recent writings by economists that are relevant to the topic of distributivejustice and to provide an economist's perspective on recent writings by philosophers on distributivejustice. He further announces that his primary aim is to facilitate traffic in one direction--to interpret and formulate the ideas of contemporary philosophers on distributivejustice so as to introduce them to economists with a view to increasing the philosophical sophistication of work by economists on these normative issues. I endorse this aim. But since I am not a trained economist, I shall not attempt to assess the extent to which this project is successfully completed. This review explores the adequacy of Roemer's survey of contemporary theories of justice and the philosophical interest of his own contributions to debates about distributivejustice. These Roemerian contributions appear interspersed among critical discussions in Theories of DistributiveJustice as well as in the more recent monograph Equality of Opportunity. 1.. (shrink)
It is argued that the Nash bargaining solution cannot serve as a principle of distributivejustice because (i) it cannot secure stable cooperation in repeated interactions and (ii) it cannot capture our moral intuitions concerning distributive questions. In this article, I propose a solution to the first problem by amending the Nash bargaining solution so that it can maintain stable cooperation among rational bargainers. I call the resulting principle the stabilized Nash bargaining solution. The principle defends (...) class='Hi'>justice in the form 'each according to her basic needs and above this level according to her relative bargaining power'. In response to the second problem, I argue that the stabilized Nash bargaining solution can serve as a principle of distributivejustice in certain situations where moral reasoning is reduced to instrumental reasoning. In particular, I argue that rational individuals would choose the stabilized Nash bargaining solution in Rawls' original position. (shrink)
This paper considers the relation between philosophical discussions of, and social-scientific research into popular beliefs about, distributivejustice. The first part sets out the differences and tensions between the two perspectives, identifying considerations which tend to lead adherents of each discipline to regard the other as irrelevant to its concerns. The second discusses four reasons why social scientists might benefit from philosophy: problems in identifying inconsistency, the fact that non-justice considerations might underlie distributive judgments, the way (...) in which different principles of justice can yield the same concrete distributive judgments, and the ambiguity of key terms. The third part distinguishes and evaluates three versions of the claim that normative theorising about justice can profit from empirical research into public opinion: that its findings are food for thought, that they amount to feasibility constraints, and that they are constitutive of normatively justified principles of justice. The view that popular opinion about justice has a strongly constitutive role to play in justifying principles of distributivejustice stricto sensu is rejected, but it is argued that what the people think (and what they can reasonably be expected to come to think) on distributive matters can be an important factor for the political theorist to take into account, for reasons of legitimacy, or feasibility, or both. (shrink)
The symbolism introduced earlier provides a convenient vehicle for examining the status and consistency of Aristotle's three diverse justifications and for explaining how he means to avoid Protagorean relativism without embracing Platonic absolutism. When the variables ‘ x ’ and ‘ y ’ are allowed to range over the groups of free men in a given polis as well as over individual free men, the formula for the Aristotelian conception of justice expresses the major premiss of Aristotle's three justifications: (...) (1) (∀ x )(∀ y ) (P(x)·W(x)/P(y)·W(y)=V(T(x))/V(T(y)))Democracy is justified by adding a minor premiss to the effect that as a group the many ( m ) are superior (>) in virtue and wealth to the few best men ( f ): 85 (2 d ) (P(m) · W(m)) > (P(f) · W(f)) (3 d ) V(T(m))>V(T(f))Absolute kingship is justified when a godlike man ( g ) appears in a polis who is incommensurably superior (≫) in virtue and wealth to all the remaining free men ( r ): (2 k ) (P(g) · W(g)) ≫ (P(r) · W(r)) (3 k ) V(T(g)) ≫ V(T(r))True aristocracy requires a more complex justification, which was symbolized in Section 4. These justifications are compatible with each other since they apply to different situations. The polises where democracy and true aristocracy are justified contain no godlike men, and the polis in which democracy is justified differs from that in which true aristocracy is justified in containing a large group of free men who individually have little virtue ( Pol. III.11.1281b23-25, 1282a25-26). Each of the justifications is a valid deductive argument. Aristotle affirms the major premiss they share on the basis of a twofold appeal to nature. The principle of distributivejustice, the concept as distinguished from the various conceptions of distributivejustice, is itself according to nature ( Pol. VII.3.1325b7-10) and so too is one particular standard of worth, the standard of the best polis. Consequently, the question of the status of these three justifications, whether they are purely hypothetical or not, is a question about the minor premiss or premisses of each. In the case of the democratic premiss Aristotle's answer is straightforward: it is sometimes but not always true ( Pol. III.11.1281bl5-21). Hence the justification of democracy is not purely hypothetical. Nor is the justification of absolute kingship. The man who is “like a god among men” ( Pol. III.13.1284a10-11) would be a man of heroic virtue (see VII.14.1332bl6-27); and such a man, Aristotle says, is “rare” ( σπávιoη ) (not nonexistent) ( E.N. VII.1.1145a27-28). The minor premisses of the aristocratic argument describe a situation where all of the free men in a given polis have sufficient wealth for the exercise of the moral and intellectual virtues and where all of the older free men of the polis are men of practical wisdom. In the Politics Aristotle makes only the modest claim that such a situation is possible: It is not possible for the best constitution to come into being without appropriate equipment [that is, the appropriate quality and quantity of territory and of citizens and noncitizens]. Hence one must presuppose many things as one would wish them to be, though none of them must be impossible ( Pol. VII.4.1325b37-38; see also II.6.1265al7-18). But Aristotle appears to subscribe to the principle that every possibility is realized at some moment of time ( Top. 11.11.115bl7-18, Met. Θ.4.1047b3-6, N.2.1088b23-25). This principle together with the claim that the situation described is possible entails that the situation sometimes occurs. Thus even Aristotle's justification of true aristocracy is not purely hypothetical. The final question is Aristotle's way of avoiding Protagorean relativism without embracing Platonic absolutism. The relativist, along with everyone else ( E.N. V.3.1131a13-14, Pol. III.12.1282bl8), can accept the principle of distributivejustice: Q(x)/Q(y) = V(T(x))/V(T(y)) And he can concede that particular instances of this principle, particular conceptions of justice, accurately describe the modes of distributing political authority that appear just to particular polises and to particular philosophers. What he denies is that there is any basis for ranking these various conceptions of justice or for singling one out as the best (Plato, Theaet. 172A-B). Aristotle, following in Plato's track ( Laws X.888D7-890D8), maintains against the relativist that nature provides such a basis. But he departs from Plato in his conception of nature. For Plato “the just by nature” ( τó ρυσει δίκ↑oν }) ( Rep. VI.501B2) is the Form of justice, an incorporeal entity ( Phdo. 65D4-5, Soph. 246B8) that exists beyond time and space ( Tim. 37C6-38C3, 51E6-52B2), whereas for Aristotle the sensible world is the realm of nature ( Met. A.1.1069a30-b2). Thus in appealing to nature Aristotle does not appeal to a transcendent standard. Nor does he appeal to his main criterion of the natural, namely, happening always or for the most part. Aristotle's theory of justice is anchored to nature by means of the polis described in Politics VII and VIII, and he regards this polis as natural because it fosters the true end of human life and because its social and political structure reflects the natural hierarchy of human beings and the natural stages of life. Thus the nature that Aristotle's theory of justice is ultimately founded on is human nature. (shrink)
In today’s society, a peculiar understanding of distributivejustice has developed which holds that “social justice must be distributed by the coercive force of government.” However, this is a perversion of the ideal of distributivejustice. The perspective of distributivejustice which should be considered is one with its roots [...].
This paper concentrates on the way Kant's distinction between duties of right and duties of virtue operates at the interstate level. I argue that his Right of Nations (V ölkerrecht) can be interpreted as a duty to establish a kind of interstate distributivejustice (that is, as a duty to secure states in their independence and territorial possessions), which is called for to secure domestic distributivejustice and to protect individuals' freedom and private property. Or at (...) least this is 'ideal theory' for, as I specify, this cosmopolitan linkage is compromised by Kant's endeavour to accomodate the existence of non-republican states. (shrink)
The present article explores ‘anti-cosmopolitan’ arguments that shared institutions above the state, such as there are, are not of a kind that support or give rise to distributive claims beyond securing minimum needs. The upshot is to rebut certain of these ‘anti-cosmopolitan’ arguments. Section 1 asks under which conditions institutions are subject to distributivejustice norms. That is, which sound reasons support claims to a relative share of the benefits of institutions that exist and apply to individuals? (...) Such norms may require strict equality, Rawls’ Difference Principle, or other constraints on inequality. Section 2 considers, and rejects, several arguments why existing international institutions are not thought to meet these conditions. (shrink)
Concern with material equality as the central form of distributivejustice is a very modern idea. Distributivejustice for Aristotle and many other writers for millennia after him was a matter of distributing what each ought to get from merit or desert in some sense. Many, such as Hume, thought material equality a pernicious idea. In the medieval village life of Bodo, villagers knew enough about each other to govern relations through norms, including, when necessary, a (...) norm of charity. In more complex modern societies, economic destitution cannot so well be handled by individual charity, but now it can be handled by states. Hence, we begin to conceive of the idea of distributivejustice as driven essentially by concern for material equality. The difference in state capacities is largely epistemological: states today can know much more about their citizens. (shrink)
In several papers, I have argued for a theory of distributivejustice and considered its implications. This theory includes a principle of responsibility that was endorsed by others within an account of defensive force (self-defense and defense of others). Whitley Kaufman criticizes this account which he refers to as the "distributivejustice theory of self-defense" (DJ theory). In this paper, I respond to this criticism. I argue that Kaufman presents the theory inaccurately, that his standard of (...) evaluation of the theory is inadequate and that his claim that the theory should be rejected is unconvincing. (shrink)
Various arguments have been provided for drawing non-humans such as animals and artificial agents into the sphere of moral consideration. In this paper, I argue for a shift from an ontological to a social-philosophical approach: instead of asking what an entity is, we should try to conceptually grasp the quasi-social dimension of relations between non-humans and humans. This allows me to reconsider the problem of justice, in particular distributivejustice . Engaging with the work of Rawls, I (...) show that an expansion of the contractarian framework to non-humans causes an important problem for liberalism, but can be justified by a contractarian argument. Responding to Bell’s and Nussbaum’s comments on Rawls, I argue that we can justify drawing non-humans into the sphere of distributivejustice by relying on the notion of a co-operative scheme. I discuss what co-operation between humans and non-humans can mean and the extent to which it depends on properties. I conclude that we need to imagine principles of ecological and technological distributivejustice. (shrink)
One of the arguments against conducting human subject trials inthe Third World adopts a distributivejustice principle found ina commentary of the CIOM'S Eighth Guideline for internationalresearch on human subjects. Critics argue that non-participantmembers of the community in which the trials are conducted areexploited because sponsoring agencies do not ensure that theproducts developed have been made reasonably available to theseindividuals.I argue that the distributive principle's wording is too vagueand ambiguous to be used to criticize any trial. Furthermore,the (...) mere fact that an experiment does not fulfill this particulardistributive justice principle does not entail that it isunethical. (shrink)
What will the demands of distributivejustice be in the postgenetic revolutionary world? Will genetic inheritance be regarded as socially distributed goods? This may seem a more reasonable position to assert as biotechnology progresses further toward human genetic manipulation.
When faced with multiple claims to a particular good, what does distributivejustice require? To answer this question, we need a substantive moral theory that will enable us assign relative moral weights to the parties' claims. But this is not all we need. Once we have assessed the moral weight of each party's claim, we still need to decide what method of distribution to employ, for there are two methods open to us. We could take the winner-take-all approach, (...) and award the good to the party with the strongest claim. On the other hand, we could divide the good proportionally, according to the relative strength of each party's claim. Because the choice between these two methods of distribution can have a dramatic impact on the resulting pattern of distribution, the choice presents a question of justice. But this is a question of justice that is often overlooked. As a result, we currently employ the principle of proportionality far less often than justice actually requires. If we focus on the question of distributive method, however, we are not only better able to understand how certain reasons enter into our all-things-considered moral judgments, we are also able to explain some perplexing but common aspects of our moral beliefs: how rights can be said to have peremptory force, yet still be balanced against other important interests; how justice can sometimes require compromise, yet sometimes require victory; and how a moral theory can avoid being too demanding while still being demanding enough. Key Words: autonomy equality indivisibility inviolability weighted lotteries rights. (shrink)
An ethical analysis of chief executive officer (CEO) salaries can be approached via theory on distributivejustice and an examination of some corporate codes of ethics. U.S. CEO salaries are compared with their Japanese and European counterparts, and factors behind the high U.S. CEO salaries are reviewed. The negative repercussions of high pay are discussed, including feelings of unfairness, declining morale and greater cynicism found in lower level employees. Reduced research and development budgets, and downsized organizations are related (...) to the maintenance of high CEO salaries. After considering economic repercussions, recommendations for reform, which lead to the greatest expected benefit of the least advantaged, are made. (shrink)
Philippe Van Parijs suggests that in culturally divided societies health care systems (and perhaps other welfare services) should be divided along regional lines. He argues that since members of homogenous societies have relatively similar needs and tastes, it is easier for them to agree on a rather comprehensive distributive scheme. This proposed reform of health care, Van Parijs argues, would be consistent with distributivejustice rather than undermine it. Against Van Parijs, the paper demonstrates that this policy (...) of devolution upsets distributivejustice. Devolution does so by shifting the pattern of distribution (across communities) from distribution according to need, to distribution of equal shares. The paper also argues that devolution is likely to weaken solidarity across the polity as a whole, which further undermines the attainment of distributivejustice. The paper concludes that far from catering to culturally driven differences in medical preferences, distributivejustice (in fact) permits disregard of such differences, and warrants enforcing a unitary pattern of consumption of medical goods (and other welfare services) across the citizenry, thus retaining a unified health care (and correspondingly, welfare) system. Key Words: devolution health care justice solidarity Van Parijs. (shrink)
We argue that for theorists with a post-institutional conception of property, e.g., Rawlsians, there is no principled reason to limit the domain of distributivejustice to tax and transfer-both tax policy and the rules of the private law are constructed in service to distributive aims. Such theorists cannot maintain a commitment to a normative conception of private law independent of their overarching distributive principles. In contrast, theorists with a pre-institutional conception of property can derive the private (...) law from sectors of morality independent of distributivejustice. Nevertheless, we argue, this does not entail that the private law, for pre-institutional theorists, must be sanitized of equity-oriented values. Non-libertarian pre-institutional theorists holding principled commitments to equity-oriented values are free to invoke either tax and transfer or the rules of the private law to attain them. Footnotesa We are grateful to John G. Bennett, Harry Dolan, Edward McCaffery, and Ellen Frankel Paul for written comments on a previous draft and to Eric Mack, Fred Miller, Jeffrey Paul, A. John Simmons, and the other contributors to this volume for valuable discussions. (shrink)
Fichte's definitions of property appear to diverge from modern common linguistic usage, especially his identification of leisure as the object of an absolute right of property, and they may even appear arbitrary. I argue that these definitions are not in fact arbitrary. Rather, any divergence from common linguistic usage can be explained in terms of a conceptual innovation which consists in expanding or modifying a concept by thinking it through, thereby generating new content. In the case of Fichte's theory of (...) property, this content turns out to be leisure as the primary object of a theory of distributivejustice. The conceptual innovation found in Fichte's theory of property invites a reconceptualization of the relation between work and freedom. (shrink)
This paper suggests a strategy for constructing a contemporary Humean theory of distributivejustice which would serve to ground what I call an entrepreneurial welfare state. It is argued that blending David Hume's insights about the origins and purposes of justice with Ronald Dworkin's insurance-based reasoning supporting his equality of resources model of distributivejustice will yield a state which, as a matter of justice, encourages its members to engage in entrepreneurial activities and (...) which protects them from the worst extremes of market economies. (shrink)
Can we achieve greater fairness by reforming the corporation? Some recent progressive critics of the corporation arguethat we can achieve greater social justice both inside and outside the corporation by simply rewriting or reinterpreting corporate rulesto favor non-stockholders over stockholders. But the progressive program for reforming the corporation rests on a critical assumption,which I challenge in this essay, namely that the rules of the corporation matter, so that changing them can effect a lasting redistribution of wealth from stockholders to (...) non-stockholders. This essay uses a critique of the progressive reform program to argue that the rules ofthe corporation are distributively neutral. The corporation isn't rigged against non-stockholders, and changing its rules will not improve the bargaining power of non-stockholders. However, while the rules may be epiphenomenal from the standpoint of distributivejustice, they can have substantial impacts on the corporation's efficiency. As a result, the proposed reforms may hurt the corporation's capacity to generate benefits for all the parties concerned. (shrink)
People living in rural areas make up 20 percent of the U.S. population, but only 9 percent of physicians practice there. This uneven distribution is significant because rural areas have higher percentages of people in poverty, elderly people, people lacking health insurance coverage, and people with chronic diseases. As a way of ameliorating these disparities, e-health initiatives are being implemented. But the rural e-health movement raises its own set of distributivejustice concerns about the digital divide. Moreover, even (...) if the digital divide is overcome, e-health services may be of an inferior quality compared to face-to-face medical encounters. In this paper, I argue that before we can fully understand the distributivejustice implications of e-health, we must first understand what distributivejustice means. I argue that five elements—fairness, quality, accessibility, availability, and efficiency—constitute a general conception of justice and that all of these elements must be considered when evaluating e-health for rural health profession shortage areas. In doing so, it may be necessary to make important tradeoffs among these elements. I then examine the development of e-health programs in light of Rawls’s principle of equal opportunity and Daniels’s notion of species-typical functioning. I conclude that in the context of e-health, Rawls’s principle should be expanded to include geography as a prima facie morally relevant criterion for allocating healthcare benefits. I also conclude that Daniels’s notion of species-typical functioning provides grounds for thinking of health and some healthcare services as special goods. (shrink)
This article challenges an argument from Tom Donaldson''s recent bookThe Ethics of International Business with a claim that distributivejustice, deemed in many circles to impose a duty of mutual aid on individuals and nations, establishes a basis for holding multinational corporations to such a duty as well. The root idea I advocate is that Rawls'' theory of justice can be deployed — beyond its original intent yet in line with its spirit — to underwrite aprima facie (...) obligation of international business to render aid to ameliorate suffering on behalf of the inhabitants of developing countries in which they operate. (shrink)
Introduction: All countries face theissue of choice in healthcare. Allocation ofhealthcare resources is clearly associated withthe concept of distributivejustice and to theexistence of a right to healthcare.Nevertheless, there is still the question ofwhether this right should include all types ofhealthcare services or if it should be limitedto selected types. It follows that choices mustbe made, priorities must be set and thatefficiency of healthcare services should bemaximum.
In a controlled laboratory experiment, we found evidence for our predictions that participants who received fair distributive treatment were more likely to lie to give a supervisor a good performance evaluation than those treated unfairly, and those who received unfair distributive treatment were more likely to steal money from a supervisor than those treated fairly. We further proposed that the presence of an ethical code of conduct would moderate these relationships such that when the code was present these (...) relationships would be weaker than when the code was absent, but we failed to find support for these moderating effects. Our findings suggest that the relationship between distributivejustice and unethical behavior is likely more complex than previously considered. Both researchers and managers may benefit from a broader understanding of the factors that motivate and inhibit unethical behaviors intended to benefit and harm supervisors and/or organizations. (shrink)
Progressives have advocated reforms of rules governing corporations to achieve greater distributivejustice, but Maitland (2001) hasargued that corporate rules are distributively neutral and that changing the rules will have no long run impact on distributivejustice. These different conclusions stem from the use of two different methods of economic analysis, partial equilibrium and general equilibrium models. A change in the rules governing corporations in a “large” sector of the economy is appropriately analyzed using a general (...) equilibrium analysis, supporting the conclusion that changes in the rules may affect distributivejustice in the long run. However, a partial equilibrium analysis of a change in the rules of corporations affecting a “small” part of the economy such as asingle firm or even all firms in a small state supports the claim that such changes cannot affect distributivejustice. (shrink)
The authors argue that a free market paradigm facilitates wealth creation but does little to distribute that wealth in a just manner. In order to achieve the social goal of distributivejustice, the concept of a fair market is introduced and explored. The authors then examine three drivers that can help improve the lives of all people, especially the poor: civil society, its institutions, and business. After exploring the roles these drivers might play in developing fair markets, we (...) describe three enablers that serve as catalysts for change: the effects of globalization, the impact of technology, and the emergence of entrepreneurial activity. We conclude by making recommendations for establishing fair markets and provide exemplars of two firms that embody the arguments made in the article. (shrink)
The question whether corporations should be used as a means for administering distributivejustice is crucial. There are two fundamental issues associated with this. Firstly, would the introduction of rules have any distributional effect? Secondly, what would be the efficiency cost? In this paper, we explore both questions with reference to a job-security corporate rule. We show that the job-security rule will always produce distributional consequences which are consistent with its objectives. However, whether or not it is a (...) socially desirable policy depends on whether the economy is at an efficient allocation and what motivated the policy. It can be shown that under some conditions, even if the initial allocation is efficient, yet not the socially desirable one, a corporate rule—like the job security one—may produce socially desirable gains. The same can be said in the case where the initial allocation is inefficient even in the presence of competitive markets (dueto incompleteness problems). However, these social gains would come at the expense of competitiveness. In an internationally open environment this may offset the initial social gains from this policy. Whether or not this happens would then depend on whether agents have a social dimension to their preferences or not. If they do, their response to the initiative may offset the initial loss of competitiveness. Alternatively, society may face the dilemma whether to remain open to uphold local conceptions of distributivejustice. (shrink)
This paper argues that the concern for distributivejustice might be universal rather than contingent on a morally optional relationship, but limited in the demands it places upon us where a reasonable assurance of reciprocity is lacking. Principles of distributivejustice apply wherever people are interacting, even if they have no choice but to interact, but are grounded in the goal of constituting relationships of mutual recognition as equals, and so partly conditional on compliance by others. (...) On this view, there is no unilateral duty to share the benefits of cooperation fairly, only a unilateral duty to help establish institutions that will permit fair sharing with a reasonable assurance of reciprocity. (shrink)
This article is an extended critical review of a set of essays arguing for the deregulation of U.S. industry. The essays are by mostly lawyers and economists, not philosophers. The writers act as though non-market-based theories of distributivejustice do not exist. Nonetheless, the essays are ingenious and sophisticated enough to present a considerable challenge to such theories. In criticism I discuss chiefly two broad themes — the considerations a non-market-based theory would adduce in rebuttal, and the use (...) by the writers of the existing legal framework. The book illustrates most forcefully the clash between rival philosophical visions of the Good Society. (shrink)
(2012). The Durban Platform for Enhanced Action – Prospects for Delivering DistributiveJustice through the Operation of the Green Climate Fund. Ethics, Policy & Environment: Vol. 15, No. 3, pp. 293-297. doi: 10.1080/21550085.2012.730239.
In order to compare the distributive principle between Marx and Rawls on justice, we have to definite the concept of distributivejustice, injustice and beyond justice. By Marx the theoretical concept of distributivejustice is something like distribution according to contribution, that is what you earn correspondence to what you have done, principally it is also could be accepted by Rawls, but as soon as we actualities this principle from theory to reality, it (...) is distorted, on the sense of Marx, by the actual capitalism social structure. Related to the principle of justice I regard the principle of beyond justice as distribution regardless what youhave done, under the situation of capitalism, it means to adjust distribution by the way of taxation and etc, which is defended by Rawls with justice as fairness, under the situation of supposed communism, it means distribution according to one’s needs. The principle of distributive injustice could be understood as economic exploitation with Marx’ labor theory of value, but it first comes from Hegel’s theory of labor alienation. With this understanding of the principle of distributivejustice, injustice and beyond justice, we try to analysis distributive principle from theory to reality between Karl Marx and John Rawls. (shrink)
Philosophical disagreement about justice ranges over at least two questions. The most immediate is a substantial question, concerning the conditions under which particular distributive arrangements can be said to be just or unjust. The second, deeper, question concerns the nature of justice itself. What is justice? Here we can distinguish three views. First, justice as mutual advantage sees justice as essentially a matter of the outcome of a bargain. There are times when two parties (...) can both be better off by making some sort of agreement. Justice, on this view, concerns the distribution of the benefits and burdens of the agreement. Second, justice as reciprocity takes a different approach, looking not at bargaining but at the idea of a fair return or just price, attempting to capture the idea of justice as equal exchange. Finally justice as impartiality sees justice as ‘taking the other person’s point of view’ asking ‘how would you like it if it happened to you?’ Each model has significantly different consequences for the question of when issues of justice arise and how they should be settled. It is interesting to consider whether any of these models of justice could regulate behaviour between non-human animals. (shrink)
The claim that the level of well-beingeach enjoys ought to be to some extent afunction of individuals'' talents, efforts,accomplishments, and other meritoriousattributes faces serious challenge from bothegalitarians and libertarians, but also fromskeptics, who point to the poor historicalrecord of attempted merit assays and theubiquity of attribution biases arising fromlimited sweep, misattribution, custom andconvention, and mimicry. Yet merit-principlesare connected with reactive attitudes andinnate expectations, giving them some claim torecognition and there is a widespread beliefthat their use indirectly promotes thewell-being of all. (...) After critically evaluatingarguments for and against assigning a prominentrole to merit in a distributive protocol, it isargued that an entitlement to the ``doubtful andspeculative'''' but not the ``known andpresumptive'''' components of well-being can flowfrom perceived relative merit. However,statistical equality of outcome with respect togroups is mandatory. Semi-meritocracies aredefensible institutions, but existing rewardschemes by and large do not meet the conditionsof social justice. (shrink)
This paper provides a critical examination of the strongest defenses of the pure lifetime view, according to which justice requires taking only people's whole lives as relevant when assessing and establishing their distributive entitlements and obligations. The paper proposes that we reject a pure lifetime view and replace it with an alternative view, on which some time-specific considerations--that is to say, considerations about how people fare at specific points in time--have nonderivative weight in determining what our obligations are (...) to them. (shrink)
This essay identifies a point of convergence between economically oriented, distributive approaches to social justice and culturally oriented, identitarian ones.The primary problem of difference politics, I claim, is insuring that disadvantaged groups have equal abilities to participate in the social processes that construct and value identities. I argue that this is best accomplished through a conception of equality promoting human agency in both the cultural and economic spheres.
The concept of organizational justice is important to understanding and predicting organizational behavior. A significant development in the research literature has been the separation of distributive and procedural justice. While much of the research has focused on negative outcomes, this research attempted to verify the presence of both forms of justice in the context of positive outcomes. Subjects completed an instrument designed to measure their perceptions of distributive and procedural justice. The subjects also reported (...) their satisfaction and sense of fairness with their salary increases, their belief that the procedures to award the increases had been followed, and their level of information and agreement regarding the salary program. These measures, along with size of salary increase and gender were examined to determine their impact on the subjects' perceived level of justice. The data support the existence of the two distinct forms of justice, but suggest that procedural justice may, in turn, branch out into two aspects. One category involves being informed, and a second appears to deal with acceptance of procedures. A series of relationships are then considered. Significant gender effects were non-existent. (shrink)
A theory of justice for the basic structure of society may constrain though not directly govern colleges. The principle of "equal opportunity" commonly applied to jobs either does or does not apply to varsity opportunities. If it applies, it interdicts sex discrimination but, one fallacious argument notwithstanding, it states no obligation to expend resources on new teams. If it does not apply, an analogue of Rawls's difference principle may appropriately constrain inequalities between the sexes. In either case the preferences (...) of a majority of the sex affected by any inequality are pivotal in fashioning any tenable distributive policy. Those preferences are neglected by a government policy that assimilates equal opportunity to equality of (i) the ratio of male:female varsity athletes and (ii) the ratio of male:female students. It is argued that such policy rests on affirming the consequent. Its effects include misallocations of resources and overvaluation of athletics. It is argued that what should approximately be equal is competitive access, the ratio of available positions to aspirants, for each sex. Two versions of a principle of equal competitive access are proposed, the recommended one of which pertains to teams whose net consumption of resources is positive. (shrink)
Drawing extensively on Bentham's unpublished civil and distributive law writings, classical and recent Bentham scholarship, and contemporary work in moral and political philosophy, Kelly here presents the first full-length exposition and sympathetic defense of Bentham's unique utilitarian theory of justice. Kelly shows how Bentham developed a moderate welfare-state liberal theory of justice with egalitarian leanings, the aim of which was to secure the material and political conditions of each citizen's pursuit of the good life in cooperation with (...) each other. A striking and original addition to the growing literature on Bentham's legal and political thought, this incisive study also makes a valuable contribution to contemporary political philosophy. (shrink)
The core of this book is a novel theory of distributivejustice premised on the fundamental moral equality of persons. In the light of this theory, Rakowski considers three types of problems which urgently require solutions-- the distribution of resources, property rights, and the saving of life--and provides challenging and unconventional answers. Further, he criticizes the economic analysis of law as a normative theory, and develops an alternative account of tort and property law.
Introduction -- The starting point : Aristotle's classification of justice -- High scholastics -- Late scholastics -- A special theological problem : divine justice -- Jewish commentators -- Post scholastic writers -- The modern use of Aristotle's forms of justice.
Why is it that we think today so very differently about distributive and retributive justice? Why is the notion of desert so neglected in our thinking about distributivejustice, while it remains fundamental in almost every account of retributive justice? I wish to take up this relatively neglected issue, and put forth two proposals of my own, based upon the way control functions in the two spheres.
In this paper I argue for the following conclusions: 1. The widely shared beliefs that in utilitarianism and consequentialism (a) the good has priority over the right and (b) the right is derived from the good, are both false. 2. The most plausible components of utilitarianism that are used to present it as an intuitively compelling moral theory - welfarism, consequentialism and maximization - do not in fact support utilitarianism because they do not establish that the best state of affairs (...) is the one with the highest sum total of the non-moral good. These components cannot determine which state of affairs is the best and therefore leave it entirely open whether one should opt for distribution-insensitive utilitarianism or a distribution-sensitive welfarist consequentialism. Since this is left open, it is not the case that distribution-insensitive utilitarianism is the default option and every deviation from it towards a more just distribution needs to be defended against utilitarianism. Rather, in light of our moral intuitions and the persistence of the objection from justice against utilitarianism, it seems to be the other way round, that distribution-sensitivity is the default option and any deviation from it bears the burden of proof. (shrink)
The word “justice” is used in several different ways. First, justice is sometimes understood as moral permissibility applied to distributions of benefits and burdens (e.g., income distributions) or social structures (e.g., legal systems). In this sense, justice is distinguished by the kind of entity to which it is applied, rather than a specific kind of moral concern.
Some authors have called for increased research on various forms of geoengineering as a means to address global climate change. This paper focuses on the question of whether a particular form of geoengineering, namely deploying sulfate aerosols in the stratosphere to counteract some of the effects of increased greenhouse gas concentrations, would be a just response to climate change. In particular, we examine problems sulfate aerosol geoengineering (SAG) faces in meeting the requirements of distributive, intergenerational, and procedural justice. (...) We argue that SAG faces obstacles to meeting the requirements of all three considered kinds of justice, because its impacts can harm some persons and communities much more than others; it poses serious risks to future generations; and SAG is especially prone to unilateral implementation. While we do not claim that SAG ought not to be implemented, we argue that it is the responsibility of proponents of SAG to recognize and address these ethical obstacles before advocating its implementation. (shrink)
The study proposed to investigate the effect of the Islamic work ethic on the perception of justice among employees in Islamic microfinance institutions in Indonesia. The construct of organisational justice included three dimensions, namely distributive, procedural, and interactional justice. The sample consisted of 370 employees from 60 Islamic microfinance institutions in Central Java, Indonesia. The results suggest that the Islamic work ethic positively contributes to the aforementioned three dimensions of the perception of justice. Implications, limitations, (...) and suggestions for future research are discussed. (shrink)
Leading scholars from the social sciences discuss recent theoretical and empirical studies of justice in this book. They examine the nature of justice from the current perspectives of philosophy, economics, law, sociology, and psychology, and explore possible lines of convergence. A critical examination of theories of justice from Plato and Aristotle, through Marx, to Rawls and Habermas heads a collection which addresses the role of economics and the law and which evaluates contemporary sociological and psychological stances in (...) relation to justice, distributive and procedural. (shrink)
Some writers think that John Rawls rejects desert as a distributive criterion because he thinks that people are not capable of deserving anything. I argue that Rawls does not think this, and that he rejects desert because he thinks that we cannot tell what people deserve. I then offer a criticism of Rawls's rejection of desert based on its correct interpretation.
Evolutionary game theoretic accounts of justice attempt to explain our willingness to follow certain principles of justice by appealing to robustness properties possessed by those principles. Skyrms (1996) offers one sketch of how such an account might go for divide-the-dollar, the simplest version of the Nash bargaining game, using the replicator dynamics of Taylor and Jonker (1978). In a recent article, D'Arms et al. (1998) criticize his account and describe a model which, they allege, undermines his theory. I (...) sketch a theory of evolutionary explanations of justice which avoids their methodological criticisms, and develop a spatial model of divide-the-dollar with more robust convergence properties than the models of Skyrms (1996) and D'Arms et al. (1998). (shrink)
Below is a slightly revised version of remarks I presented in April at a Political Studies Association Roundtable in Manchester, England, on G. A. Cohen’s book If You’re an Egalitarian, How Come You’re So Rich? (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 2000). The roundtable discussants focussed exclusively on the last three chapters of the book. The general theme of the book is the relation between political ideologies and the choices that shape a person’s life. The earlier chapters contain Cohen’s personal and (...) philosophical reflections on the influence of his Communist upbringing and essays on Hegel and Marx. The first two of the last three chapters offer a critique from the left of John Rawls’s justification of income- maximizing behaviour on the part of the talented that gives rise to inequalities that are to the benefit of the least well off. There Cohen argues that ‘egalitarian justice is not only, as Rawlsian liberalism teaches, a matter of rules that define the structure of society, but also a matter of personal attitude and choice’. The last chapter contains a response to the arguments of philosophers such as Thomas Nagel and Ronald Dworkin that wealthy egalitarians do not have extensive obligations to bring about a more egalitarian society through acts of private charity. (shrink)
Abstract: The natural lottery is a metaphor about the way luck affects the allocation of personal attributes, talents, skills, and defects. Susan Hurley has argued that it is incoherent to regard individual essential properties (IEPs) as a matter of lottery luck. The reason is that a lottery of identity-affecting properties generates the ‘non-identity problem’. For this reason among others she suggests substituting lottery luck with ‘thin luck’, i.e. luck as non-responsibility, which would allow us to coherently regard IEPs as a (...) matter of luck.I argue that we are not not-responsible for our IEPs. Therefore, the coherent range of ‘thin luck’ is not broader than that of lottery luck. Moreover, justice theorists need to be worried about the non-identity problem only to the extent that IEPs affect life prospects and it is far from evident that they do. After addressing some connected aspects of Hurley's analysis, I discuss the type of reasons that justify seeking to expand domain of justice and the ways of doing this, for instance by abandoning lottery luck. I close by suggesting, however, that if Parfit's view of ‘what matters about identity’ is correct, its application to the case of identity-affecting lotteries may prove the expansion of the domain of justice superfluous, as IEPs belong to it as it is. (shrink)
According to the tradition of natural law justice is inherent to, and should always be observed in, all interpersonal relations: the science of natural law is nothing more or less than the expression of such principles of justice. The theoretical peculiarities that crop up regarding the lawfulness of appropriation are determined by the indirect interpersonal relations that take place within the process of appropriation: though appropriation is an action directed not towards another person or his property, but towards (...) tangible external goods, this action may have important consequences for other people. Therefore Locke's theory of appropriation is a theory of justice.Locke's solution is made possible by the methodological improvement which allows a clear separation between the natural law and the historical and empirical conditions of its application: this improvement is a consequence of the distinction between modes and substances established in Locke's Essay. (shrink)
Book description:* Contributions from leading scholars in the field * Timely and important contribution to the moral and political debate about the status of children * Hot Topic The book contains contributions from thirteen distinguished moral and political philosophers on the subject of children. These are new essays and are devoted to a subject that until recently has not been extensively discussed by philosophers. Too often philosophers restrict themselves to the consideration only of the relations between adults. Yet the topic (...) of children is an important one for moral and political philosophy. Recent years have seen an increased concern with the needs and interests of young people. The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child which accords a wide range of fundamental rights to children was adopted in 1989 and many states have subsequently ratified the Convention. In this context it is timely and appropriate to ask various questions. If children do not have rights what exactly is their moral status? If they do have rights do they have all the rights that adults have? What rights if any do parents have over children and what is their justification? What duties do parents have towards their own children and towards others in society? How should we educate those who will be the future citizens and workers of our society? What values and what dispositions of character is it appropriate to instil in children? Is the family an obstacle to the realisation of full social justice? Can we in pursuit of justice contemplate the abolition of the family? The book covers the themes of children's rights, parental rights and duties, the family and justice, and civic education. (shrink)
The marketplace of ideas theoy has been utilized as one means to justify,from a societal perspective, contempora y public relations practice. Proponents confend that practitioners serve society in true Miltonian fashion by helping clients inject their views into that marketplace. One must question, however, whether afunctional marketplace of ideas exists relative to the public relations process. Further, by focusing ethical questions on individualistic practitioner behavior relative to that marketplace, practitioners may not be paying sulyicient attention to the demands of (...) class='Hi'>distributive and social justice. (shrink)
I argue that the framing of environmental justice issues in terms of distribution is problematic. Using insights about the connections between institutions of human oppression and the domination of the natural environment, as well as insights into nondistributive justice, I argue for a nondistributive model to supplement, complement, and in some cases preempt the distributive model. I conclude with a discussion of eight features of such a nondistributive conception of justice.
There are certain kinds of risk for which governments, rather than individual actors, are increasingly held responsible. This article discusses how regulatory institutions can ensure an equitable distribution of risk between various groups such as rich and poor, and present and future generations. It focuses on cases of risk associated with technological and biotechnological innovation. After discussing various possibilities and difficulties of distribution, this article proposes a non-welfarist understanding of risk as a burden of cooperation.
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This is a constructive response to a 2008 article by Kok-Chor Tan. It outlines a version of democratic egalitarianism to complement, rather than compete against, luck egalitarianism. The concepts of autonomy and domination are used to elaborate democratic equality, and I suggest a broadening in the understandings of distributivejustice; of why distributivejustice matters; and of the concepts of grounding and substantive principles (in relation to distributivejustice).
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This book argues that moral desert should be excluded as a consideration in normative and applied ethics, as it is likely that no-one ever morally deserves anything for their actions and, if they do, it is in most cases impossible to know what. I also explain how moral deliberation in relation to punishment, distributivejustice and personal morality can proceed without appeals to moral desert.
Justice makes demands upon us. But these demands, important though they may be, are not the only moral demands that we face. Our lives ought to be responsive to other values too. However, some philosophers have identified an apparent tension between those values and norms, such as justice, that seem to transcend the arena of small-scale interpersonal relations and those that are most at home in precisely that arena. How, then, are we to engage with all of the (...) values and norms that we take to apply to us? In this article, I discuss one way that we might hope to resolve the tension and its relation to John Rawls's `basic structure restriction'. The prospect of resolution is offered by the idea of a `division of moral labour', according to which the pursuit of certain values is assigned to institutions and not to individuals. According to Rawls's basic structure restriction, principles of justice are applicable only to the institutions of the basic structure of society. The possibility of a connection between the division of moral labour and the basic structure restriction readily suggests itself. Taking G.A. Cohen's well-known `incentives' critique of the basic structure restriction as a starting point, I consider five ways in which that restriction might be defended by appeal to the division of moral labour. I conclude that none of these defences succeeds, for none convinces that the conditions in which it makes sense to apply the division of moral labour idea obtain for Rawls's conception of distributivejustice. Although the division of moral labour is an attractive proposal, it can do no work in a Rawlsian context. Key Words: Cohen • distributivejustice • egalitarian ethos • equality • Rawls. (shrink)
This paper has a threefold purpose: to question the adequacy of two familiar proposals for explaining the permissibility of harming others in self-defense, to suggest an alternative explanation, and to answer some objections to this latter explanation. By and large, discussions of the proposals whose adequacy I will question focus on what they imply about the permissibility of self-defense in controversial cases. I will argue here that the proposals themselves contain large and significant theoretical gaps. Accordingly, examining their implications for (...) controversial cases is premature, since they don’t adequately explain permissible self-defense in even the clearest cases—that is, those in which people defend themselves against “culpable attackers”. (shrink)
This interdisciplinary paper identifies principles of an affluent country (im)migration policy that avoids: (1) the positivist inclusion/exclusion mechanism of liberalism and communitarianism; and (2) the idealism of most cosmopolitan (im)migration theories. First, I: (a) critique the failure of liberalism and communitarianism to consider (im)migration under distributivejustice; and (b) present cosmopolitan (im)migration approaches as a promising alternative. This paper’s central claim is that cosmopolitan (im)migration theory can determine normative shortcomings in (im)migration policy by coupling elements of Frankfurt School (...) methodology to case studies of (im)migration regimes. Lastly, I apply this analytical procedure to recent special changes in Spanish and UK immigration law. (shrink)
This study addresses whether businesses discriminate against employees who smoke, which for the purposes of this study is called smokism. It began with a description of the employers' costs which led to the development of these smoking bans and examined several company policies as a result of these costs. The viewpoints from several perspectives toward these policies and their perceptions about smokers were also reviewed. This was followed by surveying the corporate smoking policies of 76 companies representing 287 employees in (...) the New York City metropolitan, as well as the viewpoints of these employees on these smoking policies. Several laws regarding the rights of smokers and nonsmokers were discussed and along with the company smoking policies described earlier were compared to those firms surveyed. Next, the philosophies of Locke, Kant, Rawls, and Nozick were examined to determine whether the current smoking policies would be deemed just or discriminatory. Conclusions and implications of this research then followed the analysis of these philosophical and legislative findings. (shrink)
Desert plays an important role in most contemporary theories of retributive justice, but an unimportant role in most contemporary theories of distributivejustice. Saul Smilansky has recently put forward a defense of this asymmetry. In this study, I argue that it fails. Then, drawing on an argument of Richard Arneson’s, I suggest an alternative consequentialist rationale for the asymmetry. But while this shows that desert cannot be expected to play the same role in distributivejustice (...) that it can play in retributive justice, it does not fully vindicate the asymmetry, since desert can still play an important role in the former. (shrink)