As Christians, we are called to think about the fundamental values that shape and guide our economic behavior and the economic structures of our society. This article focuses on the ways in which the problem of predatory lending, or usury, allows us to examine our most basic Christian values and principles and think about how they might serve as a moral foundation for reshaping our economic structures and transactions.
This paper explores how the notion of distance works in the practice of interpretation by studying the philosophical underpinnings of the originalism debate in American constitutionalism. Focusing on some of its most important spokespeople, the paper shows that they start from the historicist presupposition that distance can in principle be overcome by a reconstruction of the original intentions of the framers of the Constitution. With the help of Hans-Georg Gadamer, who explicitly based his philosophical hermeneutics on the notion of distance, (...) this presupposition will be criticized. The paper concludes that the originalist and hermeneuticist positions do not mutually exclude each other, but can be synthesized if they are seen as different questions about the same text. The meaning of the Constitution is therefore not given but is dependent on the direction of the questions asked by the interpreter. From this question-dependency of meaning it follows that interpretation follows the law of acoustics: "Angle of incidence equates angle of reflection.". (shrink)
The Leibniz Center for Law is involved in the project Digitale Uitwisseling Ruimtelijke Plannen [DURP (http://www.vrom.nl/durp); digital exchange of spatial plans] which develops a XML-based digital exchange format for spatial regulations. Involvement in the DURP project offers new possibilities to study a legal area that hasn’t yet been studied to the extent it deserves in the field of Computer Science & Law. We studied and criticised the work of the DURP project and the Dutch Ministry of internal affairs on metadata (...) for regulatory documents, and made an inventory of issues related to legal knowledge representation that it felt were not sufficiently covered by current initiatives in the Geographic Information Systems (GIS) field. This inventory was an input to the DURP standardisation effort. In a second phase of the project we extended the METALex XML schema (cf. Boer et al. 2002; Boer et al. 2003) for ‚regular’ legal sources that we developed in the past for geospatial regulatory information, in order to support exchange of spatial regulations, including the associated geospatial information in the form of maps. We developed a prototype application and demonstrated how the spatial planning information in GML can be combined with XML with only minimal changes, using the Web Ontology Language (OWL). This paper describes our experiences. (shrink)
Abstract A Skinnerian scenario is first sketched of our moral malaise and the contours of its cure. Moral objections to it are not elaborated. Rather it is used to introduce Kohlberg's objection to a ?bag of virtues? approach and his distinction between moral learning and moral development. Kohlberg's account of development is criticized on three main grounds: (i) he never shows that his stages form a logically hierarchical sequence; (ii) his account of ?cognitive stimulation?, as the determinant of progression from (...) stage to stage is too vague; (iii) he includes, and must include, concern for human welfare as a fundamental principle along with justice, but gives no account of the development of consideration for others, that is fundamental to morality. Indeed he shows a general neglect of the affective side of moral development. The work of Hoffman, Peevers and Secord is used to sketch how Kohlberg's account might be supplemented by a developmental account of concern for others. Mention is also made of the importance of giving an account of the more negative emotions of shame and guilt. The critique ends with logical and practical considerations which indicate the importance of the content of morality, which Kohlberg summarily dismisses by his contemptuous references to a ?bag of virtues?. The overall purpose of the critique is to provide a constructive, if speculative, supplement to Kohlberg rather than to concentrate on negative criticisms. ? This paper was read at an international conference on moral education and moral development held at Leicester University, August 19th?26th 1977. (shrink)
Bambrough, R. Essay on man.--Quinton, A. Has man an essence?--Warnock, G. J. Kant and anthropology.--Honderich, T. On inequality and violence, and the differences we make between them.--Cherry, C. Agreement, objectivity and the sentiment of humanity in morals.--Gregory, I. Psycho-analysis, human nature and human conduct.--Gosling, J. The natural supremacy of conscience.--Scruton, R. Reason and happiness.--Wollheim, R. Needs, desires, and moral turpitude.--Hollis, M. My role and its duties.--Watkins, J. Three views concerning human freedom.--Letwin, S. R. Nature, history, and morality.--Passmore, J. Attitudes to (...) nature.--Benson, J. Hog in sloth, fox in stealth: man and beast in moral thinking.--Hare, R. Contrasting methods of environmental planning.--Self, P. Techniques and values in policy decisions. (shrink)