The article comprises a conceptual framework to analyze the strengths and weaknesses of a global health convention. The analyses are inspired by Lawrence Gostin's suggested Framework Convention on Global Health. The analytical model takes a starting-point in events tentatively following a logic sequence: Input (global health funding), Processes (coordination, cooperation, accountability, allocation of aid), Output (definition of basic survival needs), Outcome (access to health services), and Impact (health for all). It then examines to what degree binding international regulations can create (...) order in such a sequence of events. We conclude that a global health convention could be an appropriate instrument to deal with some of the problems of global health. We also show that some of the tasks preceding a convention approach might be to muster international support for supra-national health regulations, negotiate compromises between existing stakeholders in the global health arena, and to utilize WHO as a platform for further discussions on a global health convention. (shrink)
This paper explores the question of whether the United Nations should engage in preventive military actions. Correlatively, it asks whether UN preventive military actions could satisfy just war principles. Rather than from the standpoint of the individual nation state, the ethics of preventive war is discussed from the standpoint of the UN. For the sake of brevity, only the legitimate authority, just cause, last resort, and proportionality principles are considered. Since there has been disagreement about the specific content (...) of these principles, a third question also is explored: How should they be formulated? Moreover, these questions are addressed in the context of a particular issue: the goals of the non-proliferation and the abolition of weapons of mass destruction. (shrink)
To provide a way to understand warfare and debate military conduct, Michael Walzer's Just and Unjust Wars tries to show that civilians and soldiers are not separated by a barrier of violence as we might think, but rather inhabit the same moral world. While this view enables us to question and criticize our leaders during times of war instead of simply claiming ignorance, its success is gained by obscuring certain fundamental boundaries that exist between combatants and noncombatants. By comparing (...) Walzer's just war theory with the existential theories of Jean-Paul Sartre and Martin Heidegger, we can therefore find a more complete picture of what it means to declare war and what it means to engage in combat. This will allow us to see that what separates the soldier from the civilian is our everyday avoidance of death and anything associated with it. Through an investigation into the relationship between death and killing we can then ask, from an existential standpoint, whether we can call any war just so long as our evasion of death also results in our evasion of what soldiers must go through to protect us, thus preventing the soldier from being able to truly return home. (shrink)
In what circumstances is it legitimate to use force? How should force be used? These are two of the most crucial questions confronting world politics today. The Just War tradition provides a set of criteria which political leaders and soldiers use to defend and rationalize war. This book explores the evolution of thinking about just wars and examines its role in shaping contemporary judgements about the use of force, from grand strategic issues of whether states have a right (...) to pre-emptive self-defence, to the minutiae of targeting. Bellamy maps the evolution of the Just War tradition, demonstrating how it arose from a myriad of sub-traditions, including scholasticism, the holy war tradition, chivalry, natural law, positive law, Erasmus and Kant's reformism, and realism from Machiavelli to Morgenthau. He then applies this tradition to a range of contemporary normative dilemmas related to terrorism, pre-emption, aerial bombardment and humanitarian intervention. (shrink)
Recent work in the ethics of war has done much to challenge the collectivism of the convention-based, Walzerian just war theory. In doing so, it raises the question of when it is permissible for soldiers to resort to force. This article considers this issue and, in doing so, argues that the rejection of collectivism in just war should go further still. More specifically, it defends the ‘Individual-Centric Approach’ to the deep morality of war, which asserts that the justifiability (...) of an individual’s contribution to the war, rather than the justifiability of the war more generally, determines the moral acceptability of their participation. It then goes on to present five implications of the Individual-Centric Approach, including for individual liability to attack in war. (shrink)
Augustine famously defends the justice of killing in certain public contexts such as just wars. He also claims that private citizens who intentionally kill are guilty of murder, regardless of their reasons. Just as famously, Augustine seems to prohibit lying categorically. Analyzing these features of his thought and their connections, I argue that Augustine is best understood as endorsing the justice of lying in certain public contexts, even though he does not explicitly do so. Specifically, I show that (...) parallels between his treatments of killing and lying along with his “agent (auctor)–instrument (minister)” distinction, in which God is the true agent or “author” of certain acts and humans are merely God's instruments, together imply that he would regard certain instances of public lying as permissible and even obligatory. I buttress my argument by examining several key but neglected passages and by responding to various objections and rival interpretations. Throughout, I challenge standard interpretations of Augustine's ethics of killing and lying and seek to deepen our overall understanding of these dimensions of his thought. In so doing, I contribute to ongoing discussions of public and private lying and to the task of relating Augustine's thought to contemporary debate and deliberation on war, killing, and lying. (shrink)
The article provides an account of the unlikely revival of the medieval Just War Theory, due in large part to the efforts of Michael Walzer. Its purpose is to address the question: What is a just war theorist? By exploring contrasts between scholarly activity and forms of international activism, the paper argues that just war theorists appear to be just war criminals, both on the count of aiding and abetting aggression and on the count of inciting (...) troops to commit war crimes. (shrink)
Plato arguably stands as one of the precursors to what we today know as the Just War Tradition, and he has more to say about ethics and the use of force than what is often acknowledged. In this article I try to show, by analyzing selected passages and perspectives from the Republic, that Plato regards the role of military ethics as crucial in the construction of the ideal city, and he sees limitation of brutality and more generally a philosophical (...) approach to the use of force as crucial elements of the city’s approach to warfare. Military power and, indeed, harsh preparations for it do occupy a central position in Plato’s political thought, but use of armed force is at the same time closely linked to the virtue of justice as well as the other virtues. (shrink)
This article analyses current trends in and future expectations of nanotechnology and other key enabling technologies for security as well as dual use nanotechnology from the perspective of the ethical Just War Theory (JWT), interpreted as an instrument to increase the threshold for using armed force for solving conflicts. The aim is to investigate the relevance of the JWT to the ethical governance of research. The analysis gives rise to the following results. From the perspective of the JWT, military (...) research should be evaluated with different criteria than research for civil or civil security applications. From a technological perspective, the boundaries between technologies for civil and military applications are fuzzy. Therefore the JWT offers theoretical grounds for making clear distinctions between research for military, civil security and other applications that are not obvious from a purely technological perspective. Different actors bear responsibility for development of the technology than for resorting to armed force for solving conflicts or for use of weapons and military technologies in combat. Different criteria should be used for moral judgment of decisions made by each type of actor in each context. In addition to evaluation of potential consequences of future use of the weapons or military technologies under development, the JWT also prescribes ethical evaluation of the inherent intent and other foreseeable consequences of the development itself of new military technologies. (shrink)
In this chapter, I take up the question of whether one of the central principles of jus ad bellum – just cause – is relevant in a world in which cyberattacks occur. I argue that this principle is just as relevant as ever, though it needs modification in light of recent developments. In particular, I argue, contrary to many traditional just war theorists, that just cause should not be limited to physical attacks. In the process, I (...) offer an improved definition of cyberattack and show how some other principles of jus ad bellum constrain this widened notion of just cause. (shrink)
In his Just and Unjust Wars, Michael Walzer claims that his theory of just war is based on the rights of individuals to life and liberty. This is not the case. Walzer in fact bases his theory of jus ad bellum on the supreme rights of supra-individual political communities. According to his theory of jus ad bellum, the rights of political communities are of utmost importance, and individuals can be sacrificed for the sake of these communal rights. At (...) the same time, Walzer bases his theory of jus in bello on the supreme rights of individuals to life and liberty. According to his theory of jus in bello, the rights of individuals are of utmost importance, and political communities can never permissibly violate them in war. Thus, Walzer’s theory of just war is based on two incompatible theories of justice. This explains why Walzer’s theory produces incoherent practical prescriptions in cases of supreme emergencies. Furthermore, it is impossible for Walzer to base his theory of jus ad bellum on the rights of individuals as he conceives them. The theory of jus ad bellum holds that soldiers are obligated to obey the commands of their political superiors. However, this obligation violates the rights of individuals in a number of respects. This is why Walzer does not base the theory of jus ad bellum on individual rights, and produces an incoherent theory. (shrink)
Available Again! Long before the "shock and awe" campaign against Iraq in March 2003, debates swarmed around the justifications of the U.S.-led war to depose Saddam Hussein. While George W. Bush's administration declared a just war of necessity, opponents charged that it was a war of choice, and even opportunism. Behind the rhetoric lie vital questions: when is war just, and what means are acceptable even in the course of a just war? Originally published in 1991, in (...) the wake of the first war against Iraq, Just War Theory explores this essential dilemma. With a new preface by the editor, the essays in this indispensable collection move beyond the theoretical origins of just war theory to examine issues faced by military strategists, politicians, social theorists, and anyone concerned with the provocations and costs of military action. Popular wisdom once claimed that notions of just war would become obsolete with the onset of "total warfare," characterized by attacks on civilians and undiscriminating weapons of mass destruction. While the last decade has been ripe with brutality, just war theory is more critical than ever to the future of international relations and public discourse. This readable collection is an invaluable introduction to the debate. (shrink)
Introduction -- Just war theory -- Objections to just war theory -- Easy cases : Germany, Japan, Korea -- Harder cases : Serbia, Russia, Kosovo, Iraq -- Multiple reasons -- More problems with just war theory -- Prevention : Sri Lanka, Thailand -- Two just war theories -- Problems with just war theory I -- Problems for just war theory II -- Closing thoughts.
The usefulness of Just War Theory (JWT) has been called into question in recent years for two key reasons. First, military conflicts today less frequently fit the model traditionally assumed by JWT of interstate wars between regular armies. Second, there is a perception that JWT has lost its critical edge after its categories and principles have been co-opted by bellicose political leaders. This paper critically examines two responses to these concerns which shift the locus of responsibility for wars towards (...) either individual citizens or soldiers. Both attempts to revitalize JWT rely upon idealized conditions which preclude their pragmatic employment. I propose that, in order to arrive at a non-idealized JWT that individuals can apply in a critical fashion, an alternative focus upon a more basic question of political philosophy is required: Under what conditions, if any, are individual soldiers or citizens politically obligated to fight for their state? (shrink)
Drawing on Christopher Boorse's Biostatistical Theory (BST), Norman Daniels contends that a genuine health need is one which is necessary to restore normal functioning – a supposedly objective notion which he believes can be read from the natural world without reference to potentially controversial normative categories. But despite his claims to the contrary, this conception of health harbors arbitrary evaluative judgments which make room for intractable disagreement as to which conditions should count as genuine health needs and therefore which needs (...) should be met. I begin by offering a brief summary of Boorse's BST, the theory to which Daniels appeals for providing the conception of health as normal functioning upon which his overall distributive scheme rests. Next, I consider what I call practical objections to Daniels's use of Boorse's theory. Finally I recount Elseljin Kingma's theoretical objection to Boorse's BST and discuss its impact on Daniels's overall theory. Though I conclude that Boorse's view, so weakened, will no longer be able to sustain the judgments which Daniels's theory uses it to reach, in the end, I offer Daniels an olive branch by briefly sketching an alternative strategy for reaching suitably objective conclusions regarding the health and/or disease status of various conditions. (shrink)
In his widely influential statement of just war theory, Michael Walzer exempts conscripted soldiers from all responsibility for taking part in war, whether just or unjust (the thesis of the moral equality of soldiers). He endows the overwhelming majority of civilians with almost absolute immunity from military attack on the ground that they aren't responsible for the war their country is waging, whether just or unjust. I argue that Walzer is much too lenient on both soldiers and (...) civilians. Soldiers fighting for a just cause and soldiers fighting for an unjust one are not morally equal. A substantial proportion of civilians in a democracy are responsible, to a significant degree, for their country's unjust war. Moreover, under certain (admittedly rare) circumstances, some of them are legitimate targets of military attack. This has bearing on settling moral accounts in the wake of war and the issue of forgiving the wrongs done in its course: possible candidates for such forgiveness are much more numerous than is usually assumed. (shrink)
In this new book by the award-winning author of Just Healthcare, Norman Daniels develops a comprehensive theory of justice for health that answers three key questions: What is the special moral importance of health? When are health inequalities unjust? How can we meet health needs fairly when we cannot meet them all? The theory has implications for national and global health policy: Can we meet health needs fairly in aging societies? Or protect health in the workplace while respecting individual (...) liberty? Or meet professional obligations and obligations of justice without conflict? (shrink)
The use of private military companies (PMCs) has become increasingly prevalent, with such firms as Blackwater, MPRI, and DynCorp taking over a growing number of roles traditionally performed by the regular military. This article uses the framework of just war theory (JWT) to consider the central normative issues raised by this privatization of military force. In particular, I first examine the claim that private contractors are inappropriate actors to wage war because they contravene the JWT principle of right intention. (...) The next section asserts that the use of PMCs is largely consistent with the application of the principle of legitimate authority but undermines two of its central rationales. In the third section, I apply the jus in bello principle of discrimination to PMC personnel. Overall, I argue that JWT needs to be updated and extended to respond to the issues raised by the privatization of military force. (shrink)
Computer and information ethics, as well as other fields of applied ethics, need ethical theories which coherently unify deontological and consequentialist aspects of ethical analysis. The proposed theory of just consequentialism emphasizes consequences of policies within the constraints of justice. This makes just consequentialism a practical and theoretically sound approach to ethical problems of computer and information ethics.
One version of Moore’s Paradox is the challenge to account for the absurdity of beliefs purportedly expressed by someone who asserts sentences of the form ‘p & I do not believe that p’ (‘Moorean sentences’). The absurdity of these beliefs is philosophically puzzling, given that Moorean sentences (i) are contingent and often true; and (ii) express contents that are unproblematic when presented in the third-person. In this paper I critically examine the most popular proposed solution to these two puzzles, according (...) to which Moorean beliefs are absurd because Moorean sentences are instances of pragmatic paradox; that is to say, the propositions they express are necessarily false-when-believed. My conclusion is that while a Moorean belief is a pragmatic paradox, it is not just another pragmatic paradox, because this diagnosis does not explain all the puzzling features of Moorean beliefs. In particularly, while this analysis is plausible in relation to the puzzle posed by characteristic (i) of Moorean sentences, I argue that it fails to account for (ii). I do so in the course of an attempt to formulate the definition of a pragmatic paradox in more precise formal terms, in order to see whether the definition is satisfied by Moorean sentences, but not by their third-person transpositions. For only an account which can do so could address (ii) adequately. After rejecting a number of attempted formalizations, I arrive at a definition which delivers the right results. The problem with this definition, however, is that it has to be couched in first-person terms, making an essential use of ‘I’. Thus the problem of accounting for first-/third-person asymmetry recurs at a higher order, which shows that the Pragmatic Paradox Resolution fails to identify the source of such asymmetry highlighted by Moore’s Paradox. (shrink)
Weak emergence is the view that a system’s macro properties can be explained by its micro properties but only in an especially complicated way. This paper explains a version of weak emergence based on the notion of explanatory incompressibility and “crawling the causal web.” Then it examines three reasons why weak emergence might be thought to be just in the mind. The first reason is based on contrasting mere epistemological emergence with a form of ontological emergence that involves irreducible (...) downward causation. The second reason is based on the idea that attributions of emergence are always a reflection of our ignorance of non-emergent explanations. The third reason is based on the charge that complex explanations are anthropocentric. Rather than being just in the mind, weak emergence is seen to involve a distinctive kind of complex, macro-pattern in the mind-independent objective micro-causal structure that exists in nature. The paper ends by addressing two further questions. One concerns whether weak emergence applies only or mainly to computer simulations and computational systems. The other concerns the respect in which weak emergence is dynamic rather than static. (shrink)
The traditional requirements upon the waging of a just war are ostensibly independent, but in actual practice each tenet is subject ultimately to the interpretation of a legitimate authority, whose declaration becomes the necessary and sufficient condition. While just war theory presupposes that some acts are absolutely wrong, it also implies that the killing of innocents can be rendered permissible through human decree. Nations are conventionally delimited, and leaders are conventionally appointed. Any group of people could band together (...) to form a nation, and any person could, in principle, be appointed the leader of any nation. Because the just war approach assumes absolutism while implying relativism, the stance is paradoxical and hence rationally untenable. (shrink)
Most of us accept that all persons have a right not to be killed, unless they forfeit or, perhaps, waive it. According to the currently dominant understanding of the just war, civilians retain the protection of this right in conditions of war but combatants do not. On one view, combatants forfeit the right by posing a threat to others; on another view, they waive it when they accept combatant status, which requires that they identify themselves visually and in other (...) ways as legitimate targets. Yet people who fight in a just war (“just combatants”) and fight only by permissible means, are simply defending themselves and other innocent people against a wrongful attack or some other serious wrong. They do not, it seems, either forfeit their right not to be killed or grant their enemies permission to try to kill them. I believe, therefore, that the blanket permission that those who fight without a just cause (“unjust combatants”) have to kill just combatants is a legal permission only, not a moral permission. The law of war, I suggest, diverges quite radically on this issue from the morality of war. Although just combatants retain their moral right not to be killed, and although their right is seldom overridden, it is nonetheless best, for a variety of contingent and largely pragmatic reasons, not to hold unjust combatants legally liable for killing them. The moral right of just combatants not to be killed is not protected by a legal right in wartime. This is, however, not the common view of the permissibility of killing just combatants in war. Most people, including most moral theorists in the just war tradition, believe that the morality of war and the law of war coincide on this point. They believe, 2 as I noted, that all combatants lose their moral right not to be killed by enemy combatants in conditions of war. But what is the reason for thinking that the right they have in peacetime no longer protects them in war? I have argued at length elsewhere against the view that just combatants forfeit their right not to be killed by posing a lethal threat to others, as well as against the view that they consent to become legitimate targets and thus waive their right not to be killed.1 If my arguments are right, we must, if we wish to preserve the traditional view, explore other possible ways of defending it.. (shrink)
I believe that Tom is the proud father of a baby boy. Why do I think his child is a boy? A natural answer might be that I remember that his name is ‘Owen’ which is usually a boy’s name. Here I’ve given information that might be part of a causal explanation of my believing that Tom’s baby is a boy. I do have such a memory and it is largely what sustains my conviction. But I haven’t given you (...) class='Hi'>just any causally relevant information, I’ve given my grounds for my belief. I’ve given reasons that might justify me in supposing that Tom’s baby is a boy. Less naturally, the question might be taken as a request for a broader causal explanation of my holding this belief. Appropriate answers might cite all manner of facts concerning the evolution of the human race, why I chose to pursue philosophy and hence came to know Tom, the mechanisms of email transmission, the firing of various neurons, the circumstances of concept formation as a result of which I’m able to grasp the thought that Tom’s baby is a boy, and so on. It is an interesting question what distinguishes the narrower set of answers that I first suggested. I won’t pursue that here. I assume you have a good enough sense of the distinction I’m drawing. We might call the narrower set of answers justifying reasons, the kind of reasons I might cite in justifying my belief. Answers of the first sort are clearly relevant to epistemological evaluation. In assessing whether you know p or are rational in believing it to the degree you do, I will naturally want to consider what reasons you have for your belief. In deliberating myself about whether to believe p, in seeking an answer to the question of whether p, I will naturally consider what reasons or grounds I have to suppose that p. But what I want to focus on here is how explanations of the broader sort bear on such questions as whether to believe p. From a third-person perspective we can ask, ‘In assessing the epistemic status of S’s belief that p, what is the relevance of causal information that lies outside of the realm of justifying reasons?’ From the first-person standpoint we can ask ‘In seeking to answer whether p, how should such causal information affect my deliberations?’ At first it might seem that such broader causal information could have little relevance if any. Like any belief my belief that p can be traced back to innumerable causes from far and wide.. (shrink)
A survey of just war theory literature reveals the existence of quite different lists of principles. This apparent arbitrariness raises a number of questions: What is the relation between ad bellum and in bello principles? Why are there so many of the former and so few of the latter? What order is there among the various principles? To answer these questions, I first draw on some recent work by Jeff McMahan to show that ad bellum and in bello principles (...) are not, as often portrayed, independent—the justice of conduct in war largely presupposes the justice of the recourse to war. Undermining this independence claim is one important step toward revealing the unified logical structure of just war theory. I then argue that we can see the dependence of the jus in bello upon the jus ad bellum , not just in the content of certain principles, but also in the structure of the two sets of principles: I construct a one-to-one mapping between ad bellum and in bello principles. In doing so, I argue also that the shared structure successfully finds place for the questions central to the evaluation of the morality of war: what is a sufficient provocation to use force, what objectives may be sought by force, why or for what ends, who has authority to decide to use force, and when or in what circumstances? Despite variations in expression, the theory allows for a coherent and comprehensive evaluation of morality in warfare. (shrink)
Drawing upon John Rawls’s framework in The Law of Peoples, this paper argues that MNEs have a responsibility to promote well-ordered social and political institutions in host countries that lack them. This responsibility is grounded in a negative duty not to cause harm. In addition to addressing the objection that promoting well-ordered institutions represents unjustified interference by MNEs, the paper provides guidance for managers of MNEs operating in host countries that lack just institutions. The paper argues for understanding corporate (...) responsibility in relation to the specific institutional environment in which MNEs operate. (shrink)
Just wars are supposed to be proportional responses to aggression: the costs of war must not greatly exceed the benefits. This proportionality principle raises a corresponding ‘interpretation problem’: what are the costs and benefits of war, how are they to be determined, and a ‘measurement problem’: how are costs and benefits to be balanced? And it raises a problem about scope: how far into the future do the states of affairs to be measured stretch? It is argued here that (...) weapons innovation always introduces costs, and that these costs cannot be determined in advance of going to war. Three examples, the atomic bomb, the AK-47 and the ancient Greek catapult, are given as examples. It is therefore argued that the proportionality principle is inapplicable prospectively. Some replies to the argument are discussed and rejected. Some more general defences of the proportionality principle are considered and also rejected. Finally, the significance of the argument for Just War Theory as a whole is discussed. (shrink)
In his multi-faceted attack on Rawls’s account of justice, G.A. Cohen has argued that the notion of basic structure is necessarily insensitive to the importance of informal social norms to social justice. The paper argues that the most plausible account of the basic structure is not blind to informal social norms in any meaningful sense. Whereas informal, non-legally coercive institutions are not part of the basic structure as such, their careful consideration is necessary for the assessment of whether the basic (...) structure itself is indeed just. This claim is based on an account of what it means for normative principle to apply to institutions, which I expound in detail throughout the paper. Principles apply to institutions, I argue, not in that they restrain their conduct, but in that they indicate which social conditions they should bring about. (shrink)
Given the close relationship between the modern arms industry and the military, engineers and other professionals who work in the arms industry should be held accountable to the principles of just war theory. While they do not deploy weapons on the battlefield and are not in the military chain of command, technical professionals nonetheless have a moral duty to abide by principles of jus ad bellum and jus in bello. They are morally responsible both for choosing the companies that (...) employ them (and to whom these companies sell arms) and a well as what types of arms they develop. (shrink)
The traditional theory of the just war comprises two sets of principles, one governing the resort to war (jus ad bellum) and the other governing the conduct (...) class='Hi'> of war (jus in bello). One of the central pillars of the traditional theory is that the two set of principles are, in Michael Walzer’s words, “logically independent. It is perfectly possible for a just war to be fought unjustly and for an unjust war to be fought in strict.. (shrink)
Is evil a distinct moral concept? Or are evil actions just very wrong actions? Some philosophers have argued that evil is a distinct moral concept. These philosophers argue that evil is qualitatively distinct from ordinary wrongdoing. Other philosophers have suggested that evil is only quantitatively distinct from ordinary wrongdoing. On this view, evil is just very wrong. In this paper I argue that evil is qualitatively distinct from ordinary wrongdoing. The first part of the paper is critical. I (...) argue that Luke Russell’s attempt to show that evil is only quantitatively distinct from ordinary wrongdoing fails. Russell’s argument fails because it is based on an implausible criterion for determining whether two concepts are qualitatively distinct. I offer a more plausible criterion and argue that based on this criterion evil and wrongdoing are qualitatively distinct. To help make my case, I sketch a theory of evil which makes a genuinely qualitative distinction between evil and wrongdoing. I argue that we cannot characterize evil as just very wrong on plausible conceptions of evil and wrongdoing. I focus on act-consequentialist, Kantian, and contractarian conceptions of wrongdoing. (shrink)
Evolutionary psychology is a science in the making, working toward the goal of showing how psychological adaptation underlies much human behavior. The knee-jerk reaction that sociobiology is unscientific because it tells just-so stories has become a common charge against evolutionary psychology as well. My main positive thesis is that inference to the best explanation is a proper method for evolutionary analyses, and it supplies a new perspective on the issues raised in Schlinger's (1996) just-so story critique. My main (...) negative thesis is that, like many nonevolutionist critics, Schlinger's objections arise from misunderstandings of the evolutionary approach.Evolutionary psychology has progressed beyond telling just-so stories. It has found a host of ingenious special techniques to test hypotheses about the adaptive significance and proximate mechanisms of behavior. Naturalistic data using the comparative method combined with controlled tests using statistical analyses of data provide good evidence for a variety of hypotheses about behavioral control mechanisms — whether in nonhumans or in humans. For instance, the work of Gangestad and Thornhill on evolved mate preferences and fluctuating asymmetry of body type (FA) is a model of success. As the quantity and quality of evidence increase, we are entitled not just to regard such evolutionary hypotheses as preferable, but also as true. Such studies combine to show that the best explanation of the psychic unity of humankind — common patterns across societies, history, and cultures exposed by evolutionists — is the gendered, adapted, evolved species-typical design of the mind. (shrink)
Is there any sense to the idea of an ``ought''''that is not relative to any particularnormative framework? This ``ought'''' would not bea moral, prudential, legal, aesthetic, orreligious ``ought,'''' but rather an unqualified or just plain ``ought.'''' Thispaper (i) argues for the existence andusefulness of just plain ``ought''''; (ii) locatesthe concept of just plain ``ought'''' within amajor strand in the history of ethics (namely,the perennial attempt to demonstrate thatmorality and prudence are in harmony); and(iii) challenges David Copp''s recent (...) attempt toshow that in fact there is no such thing asjust plain ``ought.'''' A theory of just plain``ought'''' emerges along the way. (shrink)
"Symbol Grounding" is beginning to mean too many things to too many people. My own construal has always been simple: Cognition cannot be just computation, because computation is just the systematically interpretable manipulation of meaningless symbols, whereas the meanings of my thoughts don't depend on their interpretability or interpretation by someone else. On pain of infinite regress, then, symbol meanings must be grounded in something other than just their interpretability if they are to be candidates for what (...) is going on in our heads. Neural nets may be one way to ground the names of concrete objects and events in the capacity to categorize them (by learning the invariants in their sensorimotor projections). These grounded elementary symbols could then be combined into symbol strings expressing propositions about more abstract categories. Grounding does not equal meaning, however, and does not solve any philosophical problems. (shrink)
Frequently, the just war principle of noncombatant immunity is interpreted as morally prohibiting the intentional targeting of noncombatants. Apparently, many just war theorists assume that to target means to (intend to) kill. Now that effective nonlethal weapons have been envisaged, it should be evident that there is no conceptual connection between intentionally targeting and intentionally killing. For, using nonlethal weapons, there could be intentional targeting without intentional killing. This paper explores the question of whether the noncombatant immunity principle (...) should be revised, so as to allow uses of nonlethal weapons. Preliminary to answering this question, some other questions are explored, among which are the following. Why should a noncombatant immunity principle be accepted? Why is it morally permissible to intentionally target enemy combatants? Are noncombatants grievously harmed when they are incapacitated by nonlethal weapons? Is it morally permissible to intentionally incapacitate enemy combatants with nonlethal weapons, while knowingly but not intentionally incapacitating noncombatants? In order to focus on moral questions involving nonlethal weapons, questions about their effectiveness or legality are set aside. Instead of the idea of noncombatant immunity as expressed above, a delimited principle of noncombatant immunity is proposed—namely, that, in the conduct of war, the intentional grave injuring or killing of noncombatants is morally prohibited. Also proposed is a principle of noncombatant targeting, which would allow some uses of nonlethal weapons to intentionally incapacitate noncombatants. (shrink)
Any attempt to justify war in the fashion of just war theories risks underestimating its morally problematic nature. This becomes clear if we ask how the individual soldier or citizen is supposed to use just war theory in his own thinking. Michael Walzer's recent book, Just and Unjust Wars, illustrates the problem nicely. Walzer's view is that whether a state is justified in going to war is not a matter for the citizen to judge, and with regard (...) to the way the war is conducted the individual soldier can have only minimal moral responsibility for what is done. Walzer's position is criticized in detail and the conclusion drawn that such an understanding of just war theory undermines the theory's significance as a moral outlook on war. It is also argued that a more pertinent version of just war theory must have strong implications for social change. (shrink)
Just Business provides the first comprehensive, reasoned framework for resolving questions of business ethics and corporate governance. Innovative, accessible, and global in scope, its powerful Ethical Decision Model can be used to manage the ethical problems of business as they arise in all their complexity and variety. Just Business combines business realism with philosophical rigor, and demonstrates that it is not necessary to emasculate or to adulterate business for business to be ethical. The book benefits from Elaine Sternberg's (...) extensive experience as an academic philosopher, an international investment banker, and head of successful businesses. She is now Principal of a London-headquartered consultancy firm, and Research Fellow in Philosophy at the University of Leeds. (shrink)
The main premise of this article is that contemporary just-war theory offers only a weak response to its two main rivals: realism and pacifism. These alternativeperspectives on the ethics of war and peace are dismissed too readily by just-war theory, often for the wrong reasons. In light of this deficiency, this paper seeksto forward the debate in two ways: 1) by reconstructing realism and pacifism in a rigorous and charitable fashion; and 2) by contending that, even in the (...) face of such formidable rivals, just-war theory remains the most plausible and principled account of the deep moral and political problems associated with the momentous issue of armed conflict. (shrink)
In this essay, Denike assesses the appropriation of international human rights by humanitarian law and policy of "security states." She maps representations of the perpetrators and victims of "tyranny" and "terror, " and their role in providing a "just cause" for the U.S.–led "war on terror. " By examining narratives of progress and human rights heroism Denike shows how human rights discourses, when used together with the pretense of self-defense and preemptive war, do the opposite of what they claim—entrenching (...) the sovereignty of Western imperialist states while eroding the conditions necessary for the recognition of the human rights of others. (shrink)
This essay explores the idea of just war in two ways. Part I outlines the formation, early development, and substantive content of just war tradition in its classic form, sketches the subsequent development of this idea in the modern period, and examines three benchmarks in the recovery of just war thinking in American thought over the last four decades. Part II identifies and critiques several prominent themes in contemporary just war discourse, testing them against the context, (...) purpose, and content of the just war idea in its classic form. My argument throughout is that the historical substance of just war tradition needs to be respected in contemporary just war discourse, both to discipline that discourse and to engage contemporary moral reflection with the values embodied in just war tradition. (shrink)
This essay argues that the ambiguities of the just war tradition, sifted through a feminist critique, provides the best framework currently available for translating the ethical entitlement to human dignity into concrete feminist political practices. It offers a gendered critique of war that pursues the just war distinction between legitimate and illegitimate targets of wartime violence and provides a gendered analysis of the peace which the just war tradition obliges us to preserve and pursue.
Some recent authors have argued that Aquinas deliberately integrated a pacifist outlook into his just war theory. Others, by contrast, have maintained that his rejection of pacifism was unequivocal. The present article attempts to set the historical record straight by an examination of Aquinas's writings on this topic. In addition to Q. 40, A. 1 of Summa theologiae II–II, the text usually cited in this connection, this article considers the biblical commentaries where Aquinas explains how the Gospel “precepts of (...) patience,” especially Matthew 5:39, “Do not resist evil,” should be interpreted in light of the doctrine of just war. The article concludes that Aquinas formulated a two-stage theory whereby pacifism was rejected as a suitable form of agency for the state (respublica), while it was affirmed as the appropriate response to evil for the agency of the church (ecclesia). (shrink)
This article outlines the structure of a Rawlsian theory of justice in the employment relationship. A focus on this theory is motivated by the role it plays in debates in business ethics. The Rawlsian theory answers three central questions about justice and the workplace. What is the relationship between social justice and justice at work? How should we conceive of the problem of justice in the economic sphere? And, what is justice in the workplace? To see fully what demands justice (...) makes on the workplace, we should first spell out the implications that domestic justice has for working conditions. When this is done, we can develop a conception of workplace justice and investigate what content such local justice should have. John Rawls’s political liberalism was constructed for the specific problem of a just basic structure; in order to apply it to another problem the key theoretical concepts must be revised. Reasons for a specific construction of a local original position are given and arguments are presented in support of a principle of local justice, which takes the form of a choice egalitarian local difference principle. (shrink)
..............................................................................................101 I. The Idea of a Noncombatant ........................................................104 II. The Moral Shield Protecting Noncombatants.............................106 A. Accommodation.......................................................................107 B. Guilty Past ...............................................................................107 C. Guilty Bystander Trying to Inflict Harm .................................109 D. Guilty Bystander Disposed to Inflict Harm .............................109 E. Guilty Bystander Exulting in Anticipated Evil ........................109 F. Fault Forfeits First Doctrine in Just Warfare ...........................110 III. Noncombatants as Wrongful Trespassers ...................................110 IV. The Noncombatant Status of Captured Soldiers ........................111 V. Guerrilla Combat ..........................................................................116 VI. Morally Innocent Unjust Combatants.........................................118 VII. Should Rights Reflect (...) What We Can Know? ............................121 VIII. Absolute and Moderate Construction of the Revised Right.. (shrink)
Hume’s mysterious words, “we must distinguish betwixt personal identity, as it regards our thought or imagination, and as it regards our passions or the concern we take in ourselves” have been the focus of a variety of different interpretations, some more creative than others. But the solution to this interpretative problem is indeed very simple, too simple to occur to most readers. What Hume has in mind is actually nothing but the different ways association works with regard to, on the (...) one hand, imagination, and, on the other hand, passion. Hence, one may easily read the entire Treatise as containing just one idea of self, that is, the bundle of perceptions discussed in “On personal identity.” Contrary to what many scholars have recently suggested, this idea may very well be “the idea, or rather impression” of self at play in the mechanism of sympathy, as well as the object of pride and humility. This faithful but dull reading makes Hume coherent, probably more coherent than any two-ideas interpretation does. (shrink)
Whether we think of the routine conviction or acquittal of suspects on the basis of scientific evidence in the law courts, the trust placed in scientific medicine and the extraordinary interventions it makes possible, or the importance that policy makers attach to the opinions of scientists, it is clear that those making up our scientific institutions are among the most authoritative and respected people that there are. Among intellectual endeavours science has an unrivalled dominance in terms of funding, status and (...) influence on practical affairs. However, the days when natural science was widely considered to be a model for the study of the arts and the humanities already seem distant. Indeed the influence of science even within subjects which were conceived of as scientific from their very inception, such as political science and sociology, has waned considerably. Perhaps in economics scientism is still dominant but elsewhere in academia a widespread disillusionment with science has taken hold. Perhaps this is understandable given what were with hindsight the obviously foolish attempts to study everything with the same methodology as is employed in physics. Yet the backlash against a misconceived scientism and reductionism in the study of social life and culture has amounted to more than just a defence of disciplinary boundaries, for critics of science now assail it in its own castles (which they allege are built in the air). (shrink)
Just one damn thing after another Content Type Journal Article DOI 10.1007/s11016-010-9485-1 Authors Dean Rickles, Unit for History and Philosophy of Science, The University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW 2006, Australia Journal Metascience Online ISSN 1467-9981 Print ISSN 0815-0796.
Acts of civil disobedience and conscientious objection provide valuable indications of the congruence of political outcomes with citizens’ conceptions of justice and the good. As their primary concern is substantive, their logic seems extraneous to procedural approaches to justice. Accordingly, it has often been argued that these latter condemn citizens to a ‘deaf-and-blind’ acceptance of the outcomes of agreed procedures. A closer analysis of such acts of contestation shall reveal that although, for proceduralism, the outcomes of just procedures cannot (...) be contested as unjust , they may be contested on the ground of values other than justice, such as someone’s religious/ethical allegiances. Proceduralism about justice will be thus shown to be consistent with the commitment to realising certain outcome-oriented values. (shrink)
This article explores Karl Barth's early and later understanding of the incarnation with a view toward answering two very important theological questions: did Barth so historicize his Christology in his doctrine of Reconciliation that he could no longer accept his own earlier view that “His Word would still be His Word apart from this becoming [incarnate], just as Father, Son and Holy Spirit would be none the less eternal God, if no world had been created”? Or did his earlier (...) view enable him to present a more powerful understanding of how God himself was at work in the history of Jesus of Nazareth and in human history effecting the reconciliation of the world both from the side of God and from the human side? This article argues that Barth never historicized his Christology to such an extent that he ever would have espoused the idea that Jesus' human history “constituted” his being as the second person of the Trinity, since any such thinking undermines Barth's belief that Jesus' divinity must be recognized as “definitive, authentic and essential” if it is to be truly recognized at all. It is further argued that those who do espouse this view have confused epistemology and ontology by mistakenly assuming that since we cannot know the eternal Trinity except through the human history of Jesus as the incarnate Word, that must mean that the eternal Word never existed without that human history so that, strictly speaking, we can no longer distinguish between the immanent and the economic Trinity and the logos asarkos and logos incarnandus . This article suggests that those who hold that God realizes his own eternal being by suffering and dying for us have missed a crucial point of Barth's trinitarian doctrine which is that God realizes his purposes for us in the suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus, but that he did not thereby realize his own being as the triune God, since God's eternal being and act does not need any realization by virtue of the fact that God is perfect and acts toward us in the overflow of that perfect love in perfect freedom. (shrink)
The issue of just savings between generations presents an important,and for the most part unappreciated, problem for Rawls's theory ofdistributive justice. This paper argues that the just savingsprinciple, as Rawls formulates it in his recent work, standsin tension with the difference principle. When thought through,the just savings principle – and more precisely the foundationon which it rests – give us reason to reject the differenceprinciple in favor of a less egalitarian principle ofdistributive justice.
In the practice of education and educational reforms today ‘meritocracy’ is a prevalent mode of thinking and discourse. Behind political and economic debates over the just distribution of education benefits, other kinds of philosophical issues, concerning the question of democracy, await to be addressed. As a means of evoking a language more subtle than what is offered by political and economic solutions, I shall discuss Ralph Waldo Emerson's idea of perfectionism, particularly his ideas of the ‘gleam of light’ and (...) ‘genius’, as an alternative mode of thinking of human power. Through this Emersonian lens, a provocative shift will be made from meritocracy and ‘mediocracy’ to aristocracy. Emersonian aristocracy destabilizes balanced measures and prevailing discourse about fairness and justice, and makes us reconsider how to achieve a just society in democracy. As an educational implication, I shall propose the idea of citizenship without inclusion—a vision of education for a democratic society in which we learn to live as and with the Great Man. (shrink)
As it is traditionally conceived, Just War Theory is not well suited for dealing with nation vs non-nation wars. It thus makes sense to create a second Just War Theory to deal with these wars. This article explores the differences and similarities between the two theories.
Roy Sorensen advances an evolutionary explanation of our capacity for thought experiments which doubles as a naturalized epistemological justification. I argue Sorensens explanation fails to satisfy key elements of environmental-selectionist explanations and so fails to carry epistemic force. I then argue that even if Sorensen succeeds in showing the adaptive utility of our capacity, he still fails to establish its reliability and hence epistemic utility. I conclude Sorensens account comes to little more than a just-so story.
The view that lying is morally worse than merely misleading is a very natural one, which has had many prominent defenders. Nonetheless, here I will argue that it is misguided: holding all else fixed, acts of mere misleading are not morally preferable to acts of lying, and successful lying is not morally worse than merely deliberately misleading. In fact, except in certain very special contexts, I will suggest that – when faced with a felt need to deceive – we might (...) as well just go ahead and lie. (shrink)
To speak of “inferences,” “interpretations,” and so forth is just folk psychology. It creates new homunculi, and it is also implausible from a purely phenomenological perspective. Phenomenal volition must be described in the conceptual framework of an empirically plausible theory of mental representation. It is a non sequitur to conclude from dissociability that the functional properties determining phenomenal volition never make a causal contribution.
Patriotism is subject to searing moral criticism, but is it necessarily a vice? The article offers a conditional defense of patriotism. It acknowledges that even at its best, patriotism is a dangerous virtue and prone to abuse. Nevertheless, we ought to acknowledge the truth that a just patriotism is possible, and we should seek to specify and bring about its conditions. Just as it is permissible to form deep attachments to imperfect others, so, too, it is not always (...) wrong to feel a special attachment to and responsibility for one’s own country. Even so, addressing patriotism’s manifest dangers requires enacting practical institutional reforms. These include greater protections for rights of political dissent and contestation, insulating the school curriculum from politicization and bringing more attention to the nation’s shortcomings, and greatly expanding the role of international institutions and perspectives which furnish a salutary check on national self-preference. (shrink)
which I will argue must ultimately be ment that there be a good or compelling assessed by reference to the moral plausireason to go to war—and then to observe bility both of these implications and of that, at least until quite recently, contemthe larger understanding of a just war in porary just war theory and international which the conception is embedded. As I law have recognized only one just cause..
U.S. politicians and policymakers have been preoccupied with how to pay for health care. Hardly any thought has been given to what should be paid for?as though health care is a commodity that needs no examination?or what health outcomes should receive priority in a just society, i.e., rationing. I present a rationing proposal, consistent with U.S. culture and traditions, that deals not with ?health care,? the terminology used in the current debate, but with the more modest and limited topic (...) of medical care. Integral to this rationing proposal?which allows scope to individual choice and at the same time recognizes the interdependence of the individual and society?is a definition of a ?decent minimum,? the basic package of medical treatments everyone should have access to in a just society. I apply it to a specific example, diabetes mellitus, and track it through a person's life span. (shrink)
This paper highlights the relevance of moral authority, and the role that egoistic ethical claims have in waging war. This is done, in view of the just war tradition, by drawing a parallel between the crusades in the 'kingdom of heaven' proclaimed in 1095, and the present Islamic jih d , as well as the Bush administration's declaration of a war on terror. It maintains that the role of self-legitimized leaders is crucial in shaping the order of the jus (...) ad bellum criteria, in both Christian and Muslim societies, and that the indiscriminate usage of just war rhetoric proves to be a formidable weapon. Moral authority is described as a power resource, capable of capsizing the relevance of ethics, subjecting the interpretation of justice to declare war to the self-proclaimed authorities, and moving masses on the grounds of enthusiasm. (shrink)
This essay challenges a "meta-theory" in just war analysis that purports to bridge the divide between just war and pacifism. According to the meta-theory, just war and pacifism share a common presumption against killing that can be overridden only under conditions stipulated by the just war criteria. Proponents of this meta-theory purport that their interpretation leads to ecumenical consensus between "just warriors" and pacifists, and makes the just war theory more effective in reducing recourse (...) to war. Engagement with the new meta-theory reveals, however, that these purported advantages are illusory, made possible only by ignoring fundamental questions about the nature and function of political authority that are crucial to all moral reflection on the problem of war. (shrink)
: Decisions about funding health services are crucial to controlling costs in health care insurance plans, yet they encounter serious challenges from intellectual property protection—e.g., patents—of health care services. Using Myriad Genetics' commercial genetic susceptibility test for hereditary breast cancer (BRCA testing) in the context of the Canadian health insurance system as a case study, this paper applies concepts from social contract theory to help develop more just and rational approaches to health care decision making. Specifically, Daniels's and Sabin's (...) "accountability for reasonableness" is compared to broader notions of public consultation, demonstrating that expert assessments in specific decisions must be transparent and accountable and supplemented by public consultation. (shrink)
Computation is interpretable symbol manipulation. Symbols are objects that are manipulated on the basis of rules operating only on theirshapes, which are arbitrary in relation to what they can be interpreted as meaning. Even if one accepts the Church/Turing Thesis that computation is unique, universal and very near omnipotent, not everything is a computer, because not everything can be given a systematic interpretation; and certainly everything can''t be givenevery systematic interpretation. But even after computers and computation have been successfully distinguished (...) from other kinds of things, mental states will not just be the implementations of the right symbol systems, because of the symbol grounding problem: The interpretation of a symbol system is not intrinsic to the system; it is projected onto it by the interpreter. This is not true of our thoughts. We must accordingly be more than just computers. My guess is that the meanings of our symbols are grounded in the substrate of our robotic capacity to interact with that real world of objects, events and states of affairs that our symbols are systematically interpretable as being about. (shrink)
The paper considers acts of private (in the sense of individually motivated and extra-legal) revenge, and draws attention to a special kind of judgement we may make of such acts. While endorsing the general view that an act of private revenge must be morally wrong, it maintains that under certain special conditions (which include its being just) it is susceptible of a rational respect from others which is based on its standing outside morality, as a choice by the revenger (...) not to act morally but to obey other compelling motives. This thesis is tested against various objections, notably those which doubt the intelligibility or application of such non-moral 'respect,' or would assimilate it to moral approval; and it is distinguished from various positions with which it might be confused, such as the 'admirable immorality' of Slote, or the Nietzschean critique of morality. (shrink)
Andy Clark and David Chalmers have recently argued that the world beyond our skin can constitute part of the mind. That is, our minds can and sometimes do extend beyond our heads and bodies. Clark and Chalmers refer to this claim as the 'Extended Mind'. After illustrating the Extended Mind via a thought-experiment I turn to consider a criticism made by Lawrence Shapiro. After outlining Shapiro's claim I will show that in fact this does little to call into to doubt (...) the Extended Mind. However, Clark holds that the Extended Mind does face a serious criticism from the threat of 'Mental Bloat'; the worry here is that arguing that the mind extends beyond the skin quickly leads to absurdities. I consider Clark's response to this worry but find it to be unconvincing. However, I go on to show that there is in fact little to fear from Mental Bloat. Therefore, it will be my conclusion that there is some reason to hold that the mind ain't just in the head. (shrink)
I offer an argument for why torture, as an act of state-sponsored force to gain information crucial to the well-being of the common good, should be considered as a tactic of war, and therefore scrutinized in terms of just war theory. I argue that, for those committed to the justifiability of the use of force, most of the popular arguments against all acts of torture are unpersuasive because the logic behind them would forbid equally any act of mutilating or (...) killing in battle. I will also argue that looking at torture through the perspective of the just war tradition forces us to place strictures on the practice that make it hard to justify, helps us to see why torture should never be legalized, helps us to clarify when circumstances might justify torture, and suggests what sort of character is required to recognize when those circumstances have occurred. (shrink)
What does it mean to be a “just” and “caring” society in meeting the health care needs of the terminally ill when we have only limited resources to meet virtually unlimited health care needs? That question is the focus of this essay. Put another way: relative to all the other health care needs in our society, especially the need for lifesaving or life-prolonging health care, how high a priority ought the health care needs of persons who are terminally ill (...) have? On the one hand, we might see the terminally ill as being among the “medically least well off” and therefore deserving very high priority. On the other hand, we might see them as squandering vast medical resources for marginal medical benefits, thereby denying needed resources to others who would benefit much more. We begin the essay by making a number of morally relevant distinctions with regard to the category of “being terminally ill.” We note, given contemporary medicine, that individuals may be terminally ill several times in the course of a life. Not all such circumstances make equal just claims to needed health care. We also note that our conceptions of health care justice are ultimately incapable of making very fine-grained, morally justified rationing judgments in complex medical circumstances. We conclude that we must finally rely upon fair processes of rational democratic deliberation to articulate such judgments for our own future, possibly terminally ill selves, thereby undercutting the rhetoric of “death panels.”. (shrink)
This paper questions the moral foundations of the equal war-right to kill in international law. Although there seems to be a moral difference between fighting a just and unjust war, this need not reflect on our moral assessment of soldiers, since unjust combatants can be non-culpable by virtue of excuse. Under the aspect of immunity from blame, an equal war-right to kill is upheld, and belligerent equality restored among innocents. It must therefore be proven that innocent threats can be (...) justifiably killed. If this fails, there is nothing about the people who kill and are killed in war that justifies their killing. This leads to a strong presumption against war and to question the notion of just war. Further, there should be an incentive to increase protection of combatants in war. (shrink)
In this essay, Robin May Schott criticizes leading proponents of just war theory and introduces the notion of justifiable but illegitimate violence. Instead of legitimating some wars as just, it is better to acknowledge that both the situation of war and moral judgments about war are ambiguous. Schott raises the questions: What are alternative narratives of war? And what are alternative narratives to war? Such narratives are necessary for addressing the concepts of evil and of witnessing in the (...) ethical discourse after Auschwitz. (shrink)
Norman Daniels, in applying Rawls’ theory of justice to the issue of human health, ideally presupposes that society exists in a state of moderate scarcity. However, faced with problems like climate change, many societies find that their state of moderate scarcity is increasingly under threat. The first part of this essay aims to determine the consequences for Daniels’ theory of just health when we incorporate into Rawls’ understanding of justice the idea that the condition of moderate scarcity can fail. (...) Most significantly, I argue for a generation-neutral principle of basic needs that is lexically prior to Rawls’ familiar principles of justice. The second part of this paper aims to demonstrate how my reformulated version of Daniels’ conception of just health can help to justify action on climate change and guide climate policy within liberal-egalitarian societies. (shrink)
I articulate and defend a principle governing enforcement rights in response to a non-culpable non-just rights-intrusion (e.g., wrongful bodily attack by someone who falsely, but with full epistemic justification, believes that he is acting permissibly). The account requires that the use of force reduce the harm from such intrusions and is sensitive to the extent to which the intruder is agent-responsible for imposing intrusion-harm.
Abstract Susan Moller Okin has criticized Michael Sandel's view that the family is an example of an institution that is sometimes ?above? or ?beyond? justice, and for which justice is not, under the best conditions, a virtue. She argues that he both misses the point of justice as a virtue of social institutions and that he idealizes the family, and after undertaking this ?ground-clearing?, goes on to argue that families should be just. This paper offers a qualified defense of (...) Sandel. I argue, first, that Sandel has not missed the point of justice as a virtue of social institutions. But I go on to argue, more centrally, that if we distinguish between what I call ?internal? and ?social? justice of the family, and look carefully at the conclusions of Okin's own arguments, we see that she has really argued for the social justice of the family, and that this can be maintained alongside Sandel's vision of the family as an institution within which considerations of justice are neither central, nor necessarily appropriate. I try to carve out space both for Sandel's vision of the family, and for Okin's substantive feminist conclusions about family-based gender injustice. (shrink)
"In 'I Don't Know, Just Wait: Remembering Remarriage in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind', William Day shows how Kaufman's Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind should be considered part of the film genre known as remarriage comedy; but he also shows how Kaufman contributes something new to the genre. Day addresses, in particular, how the conversation that is the condition for reunion involves discovering 'what it means to have memories together as a way of learning how to be (...) together'. One of the most innovative aspects of Kaufman's filmic representation of such a conversation is its effect on the audience: how the narrative structure 'replicates for the viewer the felt contingency of memory that we attribute' to the characters we see onscreen - a couple contending with the interrelated experiences of remarriage and remembering." --David LaRocca, Introduction to The Philosophy of Charlie Kaufman, 12. (shrink)
In this short article I call into question the view that the current United States war in Afghanistan is a war of necessity. In this effort I am primarily engaged with the thought of the famous just war theorist Michael Walzer as it has developed from 1977 until 2009.
This paper explores the role of empathy and detachment in historical explanation by comparing Collingwood and Hume's philosophies of history to Brecht and Stanislavki's theories of theatre. I argue that Collingwood's notion of re-enactment shares much more with Hume and Brecht than it does with Stanislavski. This enables a just medium between rationalistic and empathetic accounts of historical understanding, as recently put forth by Mark Bevir and Karsten Stueber respectively.
Many competing ideas exist around teaching ‘standard’ high school social studies subjects such as history, government, geography, and economics. The purpose of this paper is to explore the potential of social studies teaching and learning as a moral activity. I first propose that current high school curriculum standards in the United States often fail in focusing on the kinds of sustained discourse and ideas necessary for students to develop an awareness and commitment to justice in a pluralistic society. I then (...) make the argument that understanding social studies as an inherently moral activity creates a space for transformative and meaningful learning to occur. Lastly, I contend that public schools are inextricably linked to understanding and creating elements of a just society and as such, hold equal potential to both support and severely hinder its development. (shrink)
In the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, members of the Salamanca School engaged in a sustained and sophisticated discussion of the issue of just prices. This article uses their contribution as a point of departure for a consideration of justice in pricing which will be relevant to current-day circumstances. The key theses of members of this school were that fairness of exchanges should be assessed objectively, that the fair price of an article is one equal to its ‘value’, and that (...) the best indicator of that value is the price that article commonly fetches in an open market. This article tries to bring to light the attractiveness of those views in order to guide current practice by contrasting them with alternative views, showing their connection with intuitively attractive basic standards, and linking them to commonly shared intuitions. (shrink)
What is, or should be, the role of defense in thinking about the justification of use of armed force? Contemporary just war thinking prioritizes defense as the principal, and perhaps the only, just cause for resorting to armed force. By contrast, classic just war tradition, while recognizing defense as justification for use of force by private persons, did not reason from self-defense to the justification of the use of force on behalf of the political community, but instead (...) rendered the idea of just cause for resort to force in terms of the sovereign's responsibility to maintain justice, vindicating those who had suffered from injustice and punishing evildoers. This paper moves through three major stages in the historical development of just war thinking, first examining a critical phase in the formation of the classical idea of just cause as the responsibility to maintain justice, then discussing the shift, characteristic of the modern period, to an idea of sovereignty as connected to the state and the prioritization of defense of the state as just cause for use of force, and lastly showing how this conception of the priority of defense became part of the recovery of just war thinking in the latter part of the twentieth century. The paper concludes by noting recent changes in thought on international law that tend to emphasize justice at the expense of the right of self-defense, suggesting that the roots of just war thinking imply the need for a similar rethinking of contemporary just war discourse. (shrink)
The concept of jus post bellum deals with moral considerations in the aftermath of conflict and is concerned with how a just peace should look like. This paper analyses the concept of jus post bellum as developed by contemporary Just War theorists. Its aim is to provide a critical perspective on the proposed substantial scope of this concept. In other words, it will consider the question: in restoring peace after war, is it justified for just combatants to (...) change the political structure of a defeated aggressor? The piece will be divided into two main parts. First, through a review of the literature, I define the current state of the art on jus post bellum thinking in relation to a number of key aspects of this concept. What does241 it entail? Which principles is it made of? What sort of activities do just war theorists speak about when they speak of creating a just peace? Second, I focus on the principle of ?political rehabilitation? of the defeated state: is it permissible? Under what circumstances? While considering these questions and authors' views on this matter, the paper will provide a critical reappraisal of the current debate on the justifiability of political reconstruction in post-conflict states. (shrink)
Pulvermüller assumes that words are represented as associations of two cell assemblies formed according to Hebb's coincidence rule. This seems to correspond to the linguistic notion that words consist of lexemes connected to lemmas. Standard examples from theoretical linguistics, however, show that lemmas and lexemes have properties that go beyond coincidence-based assemblies. In particular, they are inherently disposed toward combinatorial operations; push-down storage, modelled by decreasing reverberation in cell assemblies, cannot capture this. Hence, even if the language capacity has an (...) associationist characterization at some level, it cannot just be co-occurrence-based assembly formation. (shrink)
Many just war theorists (call them traditionalists) claim that just as people have a right to personal self-defense, so nations have a right to national-defense against an aggressive military invasion. David Rodin claims that the traditionalist is unable to justify most defensive wars against aggression. For most aggressive states only commit conditional aggression in that they threaten to kill or maim the citizens of the nation they are invading only if those citizens resist the occupation. Most wars, then, (...) claimed to be justified by the traditionalist fail to meet the proportionality criterion. Thus, a just war, for Rodin, is best conceived of as a punitive war of law enforcement, not as a war of national-defense. I argue that Rodin does not have a case against the traditionalist. If national-defense is a disproportionate response to conditional aggression, then punitive war is a disproportionate response as well. Furthermore, the belief that punitive war is a proportionate response to conditional aggression underscores the traditionalist’s view that self-determination, cultural identity and the like are of sufficient value to defend by means of lethal force. I end the paper by very briefly sketching an account, different from that of Rodin’s, of how individual nations can be justified in waging wars of law enforcement. (shrink)
What should be the content of a package of health care services that we would want to guarantee to all Americans? This question cannot be answered adequately apart from also addressing the issue of fair health care rationing. Consequently, as I argue in this essay, appeal to the language of "basic," "essential," "adequate," "minimally decent," or "medically necessary" for purposes of answering our question is unhelpful. All these notions are too vague to be useful. Cost matters. Effectiveness matters. The clinical (...) circumstances of a patient matters. But what we must ultimately determine is what we mutually agree are the just claims to needed health care of each American in a relatively complex range of clinical circumstances. Answering this question will require a public moral conversation, a fair process of rational democratic deliberation aimed at defining both just claims to needed health care and just limits. (shrink)
Although the use of military force for humanitarian ends seems utterly divorced from the use of such force to combat terrorism, both uses answer to similar descriptions. Both appear to encourage nations that are not necessarily themselves under attack to set aside the reigning conventions of national sovereignty and territorial integrity for the overriding purposes of international law enforcement and protection of vulnerable noncombatants. Both involve offensive rather than purely defensive uses of military force. Both answer to criteria of justification (...) that can be derived more readily from the normative moral principles of the classical just war tradition than from purely descriptive revisions of the 'legalist paradigm' in international relations, because the latter is deeply wedded by precedent to notions of sovereignty, territorial integrity, and a purely defensive use of military force. Most significantly, the justification for both kinds of military action depends essentially upon a notion of 'the international community' that is inchoate and urgently in need of rigorous reformulation. In this paper, I attempt to formulate criteria for the justifiable use of military force for these non-defensive purposes, with attention to the nuances of internationalism that several of the resulting criteria entail. Challenges to the de facto role of the United Nations as the sole authoritative representative of this community, and alternatives to its authority in legitimating the use of military force for purposes of international law enforcement, are considered. (shrink)
Recently a number of liberal political theorists, including Rawls and Walzer, have argued for a 'supreme emergency exemption' from the traditional just war principle of discrimination which absolutely prohibits direct attacks against innocent civilians, claiming that a political community threatened with destruction may deliberately target innocents in order to save itself. I argue that this 'supreme emergency exemption' implies that individuals too may kill innocents in supreme emergencies. This is a significant theoretical cost. While it will not constitute a (...) decisive refutation of all arguments for a supreme emergency exemption, my hope is that many will see this cost of endorsing the exemption as unacceptable. (shrink)
With regard to the morality of war, political philosophers have defended one of two basic positions, just war theory or absolute pacifism, but between thesetwo opposing views are various moderate positions. Throughout its long history, the Catholic Church has taken various stances, some strong and others more moderate, on the question of war. Unfortunately, the most recent formulation of the Church’s position is a moderate position without clear guidelines. In this paper I argue that if one wishes to maintain (...) that war is permissible in certain circumstances, it is important to have a position which rules out certain other types of wars as wrong in principle. Neither conditional pacifism nor the modern formulation of just war theory provides such a principled position; instead, the most plausible attempt to place the appropriate limits on war ought to begin from traditional just war theory. This view, which I refer to as strict just war theory, emphasizes particular aspects of traditional just war theory. (shrink)
The primary purpose of government is to secure public goods that cannot be achieved by free markets. The Coordination Principle tells us to consolidate sovereign power in a single institution to overcome collective action problems that otherwise prevent secure provision of the relevant public goods. There are several public goods that require such coordination at the global level, chief among them being basic human rights. The claim that human rights require global coordination is supported in three main steps. First, I (...) consider Pogge's and Habermas's analyses as alternatives to Hobbesian conceptions of justice. Second, I consider the core conventions of international law, which are in tension with the primacy of state sovereignty in the UN system. Third, I argue that the just war tradition does not limit just causes for war to self-defense; it supports saving innocent third parties from crimes against humanity as a just reason for war. While classical authors focused less on this issue, the point is especially clear in twentieth-century just war theories, such as those offered by the American Catholic bishops, Jean Elshtain, Brian Orend, and Michael Walzer. Against Walzer, I argue that we add intractable military tyranny to the list of horrors meriting intervention if other ad bellum conditions are met. But these results require us to reexamine the “just authority” of first resort to govern such interventions. The Coordination Principle implies that we should create a transnational federation with consolidated powers in place of a treaty organization requiring near-unanimity. But to be legitimate, such a global institution must also be directly answerable to the citizens of its member states. While the UN Security Council is inadequate on both counts, a federation of democracies with a directly elected executive and legislature could meet both conditions. (shrink)
Few in our society believe that access to health care should be determined primarily by ability to pay. We believe instead that society has an obligation to assure access to adequate health care for all. This is the view explicitly endorsed in the President's Commission Report Securing Access to Health Care. But there is an important moral ambiguity here, for this obligation may be construed as being either beneficence-based or justice-based. A beneficience-based construal would yield a much weaker obligation (...) with respect to the distribution of health care. In the first section of this paper I argue that the President's Commission is committed only to this weaker construal of this obligation. In the second section I argue that such a beneficence-based obligation is really rooted in a libertarian conception of justice, similar to that recently articulated by Engelhardt, and that this conception is seriously flawed when it comes to effecting a just distribution of health care. (shrink)
Usury is a concept often associated more with religiously based financial ethics, whether Christian or Islamic, than with the secular world of contemporary finance. The problem is compounded by a tendency to interpret riba, prohibited within Islam, as both usury and interest, without adequately distinguishing these concepts. This paper argues that in Christian tradition usury has always evoked the notion of money demanded in excess of what is owed on a loan, disrupting a relationship of equality between people, whereas interest (...) was seen as referring to just compensation to the lender. Although it is often claimed that hostility towards ‘usury’ has been in retreat in the West since the protestant Reformation, we would argue that the crucial break came not with Calvin, but with Jeremy Bentham, whose critique of the arguments of Adam Smith, upholding the reasonableness of the laws against usury, led to the abolition of the usury laws in England in 1854. There has to be a role for law, whether Islamic or secular, in regulating financial relationships. We argue that by retrieving the necessary distinction between demanding usury as illegitimate predatory lending and interest as legitimate compensation, we can discover common ground behind the driving principles of financial ethics within both Islamic and Christian tradition that may still be of relevance today. By re-examining past ethical discussions of the distinction between usury and just compensation, we argue that the world’s religious traditions can make significant contributions to contemporary debate. (shrink)
The information revolution has fostered the rise of new ways of waging war, generally by means of cyberspace-based attacks on the infrastructures upon which modern societies increasingly depend. This new way of war is primarily disruptive, rather than destructive; and its low barriers to entry make it possible for individuals and groups (not just nation-states) easily to acquire very serious war-making capabilities. The less lethal appearance of information warfare and the possibility of cloaking the attacker''s true identity put serious (...) pressure on traditional just war doctrines that call for adherence to the principles of right purpose, duly constituted authority, and last resort. Age-old strictures about noncombatant immunity are also attenuated by the varied means of attack enabled by advanced information technologies. Therefore, the nations and societies leading the information revolution have a primary ethical obligation to constrain the circumstances under which information warfare may be used -- principally by means of a pledge of no first use of such means against noncombatants. (shrink)
The paper analyses the role played by the concept of ‘common ground’ in argumentation theories. If a common agreement on all the rules of a discursive exchange is required, either at the beginning or at the end of an argumentative practice, then no violation of the rules is possible. The paper suggests an alternative understanding of ‘common ground’ as something that can change during the development of the argumentative practice, and in particular something that can change without the practice being (...) stopped, just as one sometimes violates the rule of a game without stopping playing. The analysis of some historical examples shows that the violation of rules sometimes leads to a consensual change of a set of beliefs and values. The argumentative rationality thus needs to be reconsidered in the light of the analysis of the conditions under which it would be legitimate to change the rules of an argumentative practice: ‘common ground’ and the right to disagreement, even radical or violent, could then be defended as essential components of argumentative rationality. (shrink)
In this paper I provide a semantic analysis of non-specific uses of indexical expressions, such as "you" in typical utterances of "you just can't tell". My treatment employs independently motivated conceptual tools, such as the treatment of generics within Discourse Representation Theory, and the distinction between context of utterance and context of interpretation.
Abstract In 1975, the first author became director of a group home for ten delinquent boys. Prior to this time, the home operated on a behaviour?modification philosophy. But during the first author's directorship, the home operated on the ?just community? philosophy stressing moral discussion and participatory democracy in making and enforcing rules and in resolving interpersonal conflicts. During this ?just community? period, residents moved up an average of one?third of a stage in their reasoning on the Kohlberg moral (...) judgement interview. This advance in stage was comparable to that found in good developmental moral education programmes for non?delinquent high school youth. Comparison groups of offenders were studied in a secure behaviour modification programme and a secure transaction analysis programme. Insignificant increase in residents? moral reasoning was found in these programmes. A moral atmosphere interview was also administered to residents in each of the programmes. The just community programme was perceived as highest on the following dimensions: 1. Amount of moral discussion and dialogue 2. Amount of resident power and responsibility for rules and decisions 3. Amount of concern about fairness of rules and policies 4. Amount of self?perceived moral behaviour change The transaction analysis programme was intermediate between the just community programme and the behaviour modification programme on these dimensions. Tentative conclusions are advanced with regard to policies for institutionalized youthful offenders. (shrink)
If women are not yet accorded the full rights of citizenship internationally and especially in the military context, a feminist position on just war may have to be provisional. Drawing on Virginia Woolf's argument referenced in the title, Eide suggests in this essay that feminist theory develop its principles from women's exclusion from national privileges and argues that jus post bellum or justice after war be central to feminist theories of just war.
The efficiency of engineering applied to civilian projects sometimes threatens to run away with the social agenda, but in military applications, engineering often adds a devastating sleekness to the inevitable destruction of life. The relative crudeness of terrorism (e.g., 9/11) leaves a stark after-image, which belies the comparative insignificance of random (as opposed to orchestrated) belligerence. Just as engineering dwarfs the bricolage of vernacular design—moving us past the appreciation of brush-strokes, so to speak—the scale of engineered destruction makes it (...) difficult to focus on the charred remains of individual lives. Engineers need to guard against the inappropriate military subsumption of their effort. Fortunately, the ethics of warfare has been an ongoing topic of discussion for millennia. This paper will examine the university core class I’ve developed (The Moral Dimensions of Technology) to meet accreditation requirements in engineering ethics, and the discussion with engineering and non-engineering students focused by the life of electrical engineer Vannevar Bush, with selected readings in moral philosophy from the Dao de Jing, Lao Tze, Cicero, Aurelius Augustinus, Kant, Annette Baier, Peter Singer, Elizabeth Anscombe, Philippa Foot, and Judith Thomson. (shrink)
While the origin and development of the just war tradition until the early modern period blended concerns, ideas, and practices from the moral, legal, political, and military spheres, from the mid-seventeenth century until the mid-twentieth it largely disappeared as a conscious source of moral reflection about war and its restraint. Beginning in the 1960s, however, American theologian Paul Ramsey initiated a recovery of just war thinking in a series of writings applying the principles of discrimination and proportionality, ideas (...) he traced both to Augustinian theology and to natural law, to the debate over nuclear weapons and later to the Vietnam War. Ramsey's work directly engaged both theological and policy debate over military force, initiating lines of reflection that have since developed further and become increasingly institutionalized. This brief essay examines the nature of Ramsey's just war thought and its influence over the last 40 years. (shrink)
Debates about scientific (though rarely about otherforms of) knowledge, research policies or academic trainingoften involve a controversy about whether scientificknowledge possesses just “instrumental” value or also “intrinsic” value. Questioning this common simpleopposition, I scrutinize the issues involved in terms of agreater variety of structural types of values attributableto (scientific) knowledge. (Intermittently, I address thepuzzling habit of attributing “intrinsic” value to quitedifferent things, e.g. also to nature, in environmentalethics.) After some remarks on relevant broader philosophicaldebates about scientific knowledge, I pave (...) a path throughthe (terminological) thicket of structural types of values. Our initial simple opposition is shown to conflate thedistinctions intrinsic/extrinsic and instrumental (or justuseful)/final. Next, I consider the value(s) of knowledgeand knowing in general and their possible value components(like the values of truth and justifiedness). After havingdiscussed the types of value of everyday knowledge,especially its functional and constitutive value (notionsintroduced earlier), I argue that these can or should alsobe attributed to scientific knowledge, thus departing fromboth objectivist and sociological views of science. One could say that I offer a certain defense of theintrinsic value of scientific knowing (and the inherentvalue of scientific knowledge) and some importantdifferentiations of its “instrumental values”. I alsocaution (in relation with my puzzle) against drawing hastymoral conclusions. (shrink)