We inhabit this world with large numbers of people who are very badly off through no fault of their own. The statistics are overwhelming: “Two out of five children in the developing world are stunted, one in three is underweight and one in ten is wasted.”1 Some 250 million children between 5 and 14 do wage work outside their family — often under harsh or cruel conditions: as soldiers, prostitutes, or domestic servants, or in agriculture, construction, textile or carpet production.2 (...) In 1998, out of a total of 5900 million human beings,3 some 2800 million lived below $2/day, and nearly 1200 million of these below the $1/day international poverty line.4 Some 799 million are undernourished, 1000 million lack access to safe water, 2400 million lack access to basic sanitation, and 876 million adults are illiterate.5 More than 880 million lack access to basic health services.6 Approximately 1000 million have no adequate shelter and 2000 million no electricity.7 Roughly one third of all human deaths, some 50,000 daily, are due to poverty-related causes, easily preventable through better nutrition, safe drinking water, vaccines, cheap re-hydration packs and antibiotics.8 “Worldwide 34,000 children under age five die daily from hunger and preventable diseases.”9.. (shrink)
Thomas Franck believes that the strict constraints imposed by the UN Charter on military intervention in other countries have become too constraining and that, so long as the Charter text remains unrevised, we should condone violations of these rules as legitimated by a jurying process. The relevant UN Charter constraints he seeks to subvert are two in particular. First, the Charter suggests that, outside the UN system, military force may be used across national borders only in “individual or collective (...) self-defense if an armed attack occurs against a Member of the United Nations, until the Security Council has taken measures necessary to maintain international peace and security” (Article 51). Apart from this, “All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations” (Article 2(4)). Second, regarding the use of force by the UN itself, the Charter proclaims that “Nothing contained in the present Charter shall authorize the United Nations to intervene in matters which are essentially within the domestic jurisdiction of any state or shall require the Members to submit such matters to settlement under the present Charter; but this principle shall not prejudice the application of enforcement measures under Chapter VII” (Article 2(7)).1.. (shrink)
For some thirteen years now, the World Bank (‘the Bank’) has regularly reported the number of people living below an international poverty line, colloquially known as ‘$1/day’.3 Reports for the most recent year, 1998, put this number at 1,175.14 million.4 The Bank’s estimates of severe income poverty — its global extent, geographical distribution, and trend over time — are widely cited in official publications by governments and international organizations and in popular media, often in support of the view that liberalization (...) and globalization have helped to reduce poverty worldwide. For instance, the President of the World Bank recently declared: “Over the past few years, these better policies have contributed to more rapid growth in developing countries’ per capita incomes than at any point since the mid-1970s. And faster growth has meant poverty reduction: the proportion of people worldwide living in absolute poverty has dropped steadily in recent decades, from 29% in 1990 to a record low of 23% in 1998. After increasing steadily over the past two centuries, since 1980 the total number of people living in poverty worldwide has fallen by an estimated 200 million — even as the world’s population grew by 1.6 billion.”. (shrink)
The second edition updates and expands the coverage to include developments in the field over the past decade, especially in the areas of international politics and global justice. New contributors include some of today’s most distinguished scholars, among them Thomas Pogge, Charles Beitz, and Michael Doyle Provides in-depth coverage of contemporary philosophical debate in all major related disciplines, such as economics, history, law, political science, international relations and sociology Presents analysis of key political ideologies, including new chapters on Cosmopolitanism and (...) Fundamentalism Includes detailed discussions of major concepts in political philosophy, including virtue, power, human rights, and just war. (shrink)
We citizens of the affluent countries tend to discuss our obligations toward the distant needy mainly in terms of donations and transfers, assistance and redistribution: How much of our wealth, if any, should we give away to the hungry abroad? Using one prominent theorist to exemplify this way of conceiving the problem, I show how it is a serious error — and a very costly one for the global poor.
The volume brings together a collection of original papers on some of the main tenets of Joseph Raz's legal and political philosophy: Legal positivism and the nature of law, practical reason, authority, the value of equality, incommensurability, harm, group rights, and multiculturalism.
Moral universalism centrally involves the idea that the moral assessment of persons and their conduct, of social rules and states of affairs, must be based on fundamental principles that do not, explicitly or covertly, discriminate arbitrarily against particular persons or groups. This general idea is explicated in terms of three conditions. It is then applied to the discrepancy between our criteria of national and global economic justice. Most citizens of developed countries are unwilling to require of the global economic order (...) what they assuredly require of any national economic order, for example, that its rules be under democratic control, that it preclude life-threatening poverty as far as is reasonably possible. Without a plausible justification, such a double standard constitutes covert arbitrary discrimination against the global poor. Key Words: contextualism corruption discrimination Rawls resource exports world poverty. (shrink)
In contrast to his own "freestanding" liberalism, Rawls has characterized the liberalism of Kant's Rechtslehre as comprehensive, i.e., as dependent on Kant's teachings about good will and ethical autonomy or on his transcendental idealism. This characterization is not borne out by the text. Though Kant is indeed eager to show that his liberalism is entailed by his wider philosophical worldview, he is not committed to the converse, does not hold that his liberalism presupposes either his moral philosophy or his transcendental (...) idealism. Rather, Kant bases the establishment and maintenance of Recht solely on persons' fundamental a priori interest in external freedom. His liberalism is then, if anything, more freestanding than Rawls's, central elements of which-such as his postulate of certain moral powers with corresponding higher-order interests-are justified by appeal to fundamental ideas he finds to be prevalent in the public culture of his society. (shrink)
Following the tradition of classical liberalism, Kant's political philosophy and theory of justice focus on the relation between individual freedom, as the central value of political life, and the state, whose primary normative function is both to restrain and protect individual liberty. In this accessible interpretation of Kant's political philosophy, Allen D. Rosen focuses on the relation among justice, political authority (the state), and individual liberty. He offers interpretations of the ethical bases of Kant's view of justice, of the structure (...) of his taxonomy of duties, and of his understanding of social welfare legislation. Arguing against the grain of much recent scholarly commentary, Rosen asserts that Kant's principles of justice are direct corollaries of the Categorical Imperative and that Kant does not support an absolute or even near-absolute duty of obedience to governments. He also maintains that Kant has principled and important reasons for repudiating a right of revolution and that Kant is not, as he is almost always taken to be, an advocate of the nightwatchman or minimal state. The Kant that emerges from Rosen's pages is an appealing and surprisingly modern philosopher, whose preoccupation with individual freedom still resonates in contemporary political and philosophical debates, and whose attempts to define the proper limits of individual liberty remain relevant even at the end of the twentieth century. (shrink)